Liberal MP Ken Hardie, who earlier said he stood by his comment, apologized after House Leader Karina Gould said his actions were not appropriate.
Liberal MP Ken Hardie has apologized for linking Conservative Party Leader Pierre Poilievre to a shooting in Winnipeg.
“It was unacceptable on my part to leave any suggestion of a direct link to the tragedy in Winnipeg. There was not. For that, I apologize,” Mr. Hardie wrote
on X Nov. 28.
Earlier in the day, he had reportedly told The Canadian Press he stood by his comment. His apology came after Government House Leader Karina Gould said she would tell Mr. Hardie his actions were not appropriate.
“It is absolutely inappropriate and that’s not something that anyone should be suggesting, from any political party,” Ms. Gould told reporters on Nov. 28.
Mr. Hardie, who represents a B.C. riding, asked on Nov. 27 if a shooting in Winnipeg
earlier this week that killed four people might be related to the “anti-social ‘burn everything down’ far-right attitude we’re seeing creeping in from the U.S.?”
“And the ‘creep’ on the Canadian side? Pierre Poilievre?” he wrote
on the X platform.
Ms. Gould, whose role is to coordinate the government’s day-to-day business in the House, said she would talk to Mr. Hardie and repeat to him what she told reporters.
Mr. Hardie made other related posts on X, saying that Conservatives are “rage farming” and that it “leads to rage.”
“The Conservatives’ crop is poisoning the country,” he wrote
on Nov. 27.
He also defended his own tweet by posting
what Mr. Poilievre wrote on X in April following multiple stabbings.
“To those who’ve taken exception to the post calling out Pierre Poilievre for spreading rage and creating an environment that some take as permission to take anti-social acts,” commented Mr. Hardie, above the retweet of Mr. Poilievre’s post.
The April post from the Tory leader reads:
“Canada after 8 years of Trudeau. Four more people stabbed and assaulted in one day in one of our cities. People never used to be afraid in their own communities.”
Along with highlighting the loss of standard of living for Canadians in recent years, Conservatives have also pointed out that crime has risen since the Liberals took power in 2015. Statistics Canada said
in July that, in 2022, the Violent Crime Severity Index had reached its highest point since 2007.
Conservative Party Deputy Leader Melissa Lantsman reacted to Mr. Hardie’s initial post.
“This is the same Ken Hardie who tweeted comparisons of Canadian Parliamentarians to Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels. Unhinged then. Unhinged now,” she wrote
Mr. Hardie’s post came as Liberals in recent days have accused the Conservatives of being influenced by the American “right-wing.”
Ms. Gould suggested on Nov. 27 that the Conservative Party doesn’t support her government’s Canada-Ukraine free trade bill because some of its MPs support Russia. “Is that what is going on? Is right-wing American extremism going into Canadian politics?” she said
in the House.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also blamed
the “rise of a right-wing American MAGA influence thinking” inside the Tories for them not supporting the bill after the Canada-EU Leaders’ Summit on Nov. 24. “MAGA” refers to former U.S. president Donald Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again.”