Jagmeet Singh’s “We don’t respect Conservatives” remark further divides an already angry nation
One of the reasons for Jagmeet Singh’s rising popularity has been how he handled some difficult moments on the campaign trail.
Singh responded well to Trudeau’s blackface debacle and demonstrated a level of empathy that is rarely seen in a politician.
Singh also speaks in a way that makes him sound much more like a regular person, rather than the obviously scripted and over-practiced cadences of Trudeau and Scheer.
However, Singh has undone much of the goodwill he generated and has sadly revealed himself to be yet another divisive politician who has contempt for those who disagree with him.
During a recent press conference, Jagmeet Singh straight-up said: “We don’t respect Conservatives.”
“Good to know @theJagmeetSingh doesn’t respect conservatives. It’s why I won’t vote for him. #cdnpoli I’d want a PM to respect all Canadians.”
Now, if Singh had said “we disagree with Conservatives,” or we will “campaign against Conservatives,” that wouldn’t be a problem.
After all, Singh is a socialist, and socialists generally aren’t big fans of Conservatives.
However, for Singh to go beyond opposition and disagreement, and to instead say he doesn’t “respect Conservatives,” is a disgrace.
A democracy cannot survive with some level of mutual respect. After all, we all have to live together after the election, and somehow find a way to keep our nation united after a divisive campaign.
Yet, with so many Canadians already rightfully outraged, and with our nation already dangerously divided, Singh’s comments are like throwing gasoline on the fire of those divisions.
If Singh doesn’t respect Conservatives, he’s actually saying he doesn’t respect millions of Canadians.
And if Singh doesn’t respect millions of Canadians, then why should Canadians respect him?
Really, if Singh doesn’t show respect, why should he get respect?
Making this even worse is that many Conservatives have spoken out favourably about Singh when he’s faced racism or prejudice. Singh has repaid that kindness and non-partisanship by saying that Conservatives aren’t worthy of his respect.
So, the next time Singh faces discrimination, millions of Canadians who would have otherwise defended him will justifiably say, “well, if he doesn’t respect us, then nobody should respect him, and he doesn’t deserve to be defended any longer.”
Singh had an opportunity to transcend some of Canada’s deepening partisan divisions, and help tamp down the growing anger and division in Canada. Instead, he has squandered that opportunity and made those divisions even worse.
Eric Duncan, a newly-elected Conservative MP, says his party should change its approach to LGBTQ issues to resonate with more of the electorate.
“I think we need to work on how we make ourselves a modern Conservative party, and that includes being more inclusive on that issue,” said the new MP for Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry to CTV.
“I’m looking forward to playing a role in that and helping shape that a little bit more in the coming months and years,” said the Conservative MP, who is gay himself.
Numerous political pundits have said that CPC leader Andrew Scheer’s ambiguity on issues such as same-sex marriage hindered his chances of election.
Kory Teneycke, a former director of communications for former prime minister Stephen Harper and campaign manager for Ontario Premier Doug Ford, said that Scheer will have “big problems” with voters if his position on same-sex marriage remains unclear and “associated with bigotry.”
“In terms of actually being successful in being elected to be the prime minister of the country, I think it’s a deal-stopper,” he said.
Former Conservative minister Peter MacKay said many women turned away from the Conservatives because of Scheer’s “social conservatism.”
When asked if he still supports Scheer remaining as party leader, Duncan said he wants to hear Scheer’s explanation of the election results and how the Conservatives can gain power.
Erin O’Toole and Peter MacKay are looking at runs for the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada, according to a well-connected source within the party who’s close to prominent figures of the CPC.
“O’Toole is waiting for the dust to settle” to launch his leadership bid, “I assume he is waiting for the caucus meeting next week,” said the source to The Post Millennial.
O’Toole currently serves as the Official Opposition Critic of Foreign Affairs and ran for the Conservative Party leadership in 2017, finishing third behind Maxime Bernier and Andrew Scheer.
Multiple CPC sources spoke to The Post Millennial on the condition of confidentiality.
MacKay, a former minister in the Harper government, has also been establishing the foundations of a leadership bid according to the one source. “MacKay has had top organizers in Toronto for a meeting last week,” said the one source to The Post Millennial.
“Its categorically false,” said MacKay to The Post Millennial. “I met with former candidates that I supported during the campaign. I met with a group who were putting together a lecture series on [former Nova Scotia premier] Robert Stanfield.”
Earlier this week MacKay criticized Scheer for his stance on social conservatism, telling reporters that issues like abortion and immigration “hung round [Scheer’s] neck like a stinking albatross.” MacKay added that Scheer’s failure to defeat Trudeau “was like having an open net and missing the net.”
After MacKay had made these comments, he soon backtracked, stating on Twitter that his recent comments only had to do with addressing Conservative policy rather than the party’s leadership.
“We’ve been discussing what happened in the campaign and how we can improve our showing in the next election,” MacKay said.
“My open net comment was in response to what the Conservatives did to lose the election with all the ammunition that we had: SNC, blackface, India, all of the vulnerabilities of Justin Trudeau and the Liberals, and how did we manage to lose?” continued MacKay. “I made probably what was a flippant remark, but nevertheless, it seemed to encapsulate that it was like shooting a breakaway on an open net and missing.”
“[My comments were aimed at] the collective, the party, the election. It was not aimed at Andrew Scheer. Of course, a lot of people want to interpret it that way and want to use it as a cudgel to beat Andrew Scheer over the head with. Andrew Scheer is the leader, I supported him during the campaign, I continue to support him,” MacKay said when asked if the buck stops at the leader for the election loss.
“I worked my tail off away from my job and family to do everything in my power to help him become the PM of Canada and I would do it again. So I take some umbrage when I get questioned as to my loyalty— you know, somebody said that ‘MacKay wasn’t on the ice’, well I was on the ice for 18 years, I campaigned in 50 ridings last campaign, and I helped put the party together, I have a vested interest in seeing a Conservative government.”
Mackay previously served as the leader of the Progressive Conservative party before it merged with the Canadian Alliance, before Harper took over the united party.
During the 2017 Conservative leadership election, O’Toole received similar support to Scheer within the party’s caucus.
Sources within the party say as many as 50 caucus members, including senators, are entertaining the idea of pushing for a leadership confidence vote at next Wednesday’s caucus meeting. At least 25 MPs—20 percent—need to sign a notice to trigger the confidence vote.
Scheer’s office didn’t immediately respond to request for comment.
The Post Millennial could not reach O’Toole for comment.
New Democrat Leader Jagmeet Singh made a bold statement directed at Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer on Wednesday, stating that the federal election was proof that you can’t be both a social conservative and serve as prime minister.
Singh told reporters that abortion is “between a person and their health care provider and no one else has any business being involved in that,” going on to criticize Scheer for his personal views on gay marriage rights, according to HuffPo Canada.
“You cannot have Mr. Scheer’s beliefs and be the prime minister of Canada. It’s pretty clear,” Singh said.
Singh made the comments during the NDP’s first post-election caucus meeting, a meeting which had 15 less familiar faces than at this time last year. The New Democrats went from 39 seats to 24 in the last federal election, a result that Singh says he isn’t satisfied with. “I’m not going to be satisfied until we form a New Democratic government. … If Mr. Trudeau wants to deliver something that’s national and that’s progressive, he needs to work with us.”
Scheer’s stance on the matter, of course, contrasts Singh’s. Scheer told the Canadian Press that it’s indeed possible to hold socially conservative values and also lead the country as prime minister.
“I believe you can have both of those positions: you can have a personal view and you can acknowledge that in Canada, the prime minister does not impose a particular viewpoint on Canadians,” he said. The Conservatives, while increasing their seats from 95 to 121, failed to form government in 2019, leading to murmurs from Conservative MPs as to whether the leader is fit to lead the party.
During a scrum at the Alberta legislature, Justice Minister Doug Schweitzer showed the way Conservatives need push back on loaded, biased questions shot their way by left-wing journalists.
“Why did you call [Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi] a Liberal mayor? Or Trudeau’s Liberal mayor?” said a journalist, with an accusatory tone, as if it weren’t true he’s allied with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and has similar overspending tendencies. Another journalist jumped in to help ask the question.
“Let me read some of your own headlines,” Schweitzer responded, turning the journalists’ question implying dishonesty against them.
“‘Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Allison Redford willing to help Trudeau’, ‘Trudeau gets offer for help in Calgary from mayor’, ‘Mayor Naheed Nenshi, former premier willing to help PM bridge western divide’,” Schweitzer continued, showing how these same journalist have written about how Nenshi and Trudeau are allied. As he was listing off the headlines one of the journalists asked if it was “helpful”.
When journalists show a double-standard it really is the job of politicians to expose it by pushing back instead of kowtowing.
“I am sorry Mayor Nenshi, Albertans spoke loud and clear, 70 percent of Albertans voted for [a] Conservative government, a government that is going to fight for them. And that’s what we’re going to do.”
Nenshi and Trudeau have long had a cozy relationship, despite the Calgary mayor claiming he’s nonpartisan simply because he’s self-branded his own past election campaign as the “Purple Revolution” since he’s adopted both Conservative and Liberal policies. In reality he’s shown himself to be a tax-and-spend Liberal. His own campaign manager was courted to run for the federal Liberals back in 2015. Nenshi also wrote a whitewash defence of Trudeau during the 2019 election.
More Conservative politicians need to call a spade a spade instead of accepting the often disingenuous and false premises of left-wing journalists’ questions.
Conservative Party of Canada Leader Andrew Scheer take note.