Earlier this week the PCP Ontario voted to allow for more debate on a policy which rejected gender identity theory.
— Global News Toronto (@globalnewsto) November 17, 2018
Policy Resolution R4, which was proposed by failed leadership candidate Tanya Granic Allen, says “gender identity theory” is a “highly controversial, unscientific ‘liberal ideology’” and calls on the Ford government to remove the teaching and promotion of it in schools.
While the story was poorly reported as the resolution did not officially reject gender identity theory, only open up a second reading next year for debate, it did cause massive backlash and for good reason.
Story is not technically true. The motion was accepted to be debated and voted on at next year’s policy convention. Because it wasn’t in the list of resolutions sent out to members it can’t be adopted as policy based on today’s vote. https://t.co/PXjzClAhKs
— Andrew Lawton (@AndrewLawton) November 17, 2018
Policy alienates progressives and moderate Conservative voters
As stated by Josh Lieblein in a recent article for the Raving Canuk:
“IF A GROUP OF PEOPLE SAY THAT THEY ARE SOMETHING, YOU, AS A POLITICAL PARTY THAT MIGHT (OR ACTUALLY DOES) GOVERN THOSE PEOPLE, CANNOT, CANNOT, CANNOT, CANNOT, AND CANNOT TELL THEM THAT YOU DO NOT RECOGNIZE THAT THEY ARE THAT THING.”
The truth is fairly simple, you cannot outright reject the identities of so many individuals, and the movement to debate that issue will in the long-term seriously harm the PC brand with centre-right and moderate voters.
Already you have had groups like LGBTory come out opposing the resolution, representing a serious split between LGBT members and the party they would like to vote for.
— LGBTory Canada (@LGBToryCanada) November 17, 2018
Social conservatives are a “natural cleavage point” in the party
Wilfrid Laurier political science professor Barry Kay said the divide between social conservatives and progressives in Ontario’s Tories is a “natural cleavage point.”
Professor Kay stated that on average previous Tory leaders have pushed social conservatives to the side in a bid to win more mainstream supporters.
“Those are losing positions,” he said of many social conservative core issues. “Harper made a calculation in federal politics that winning was more important than being a purist on social conservative issues.”
Thankfully, this mistake will likely end here, as in the legislature today, Education Minister Lisa Thompson said the motion is non-binding and not government policy.
Regardless though of what the Ford government does at this point, the damage is done, and the Conservative brand will once again need to massage its message to regain voters on the fence.
What do you think about the resolution? Join the conversation by commenting below!