Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole introduces his Deputy Leader Candice Bergen as they holda a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole introduces his Deputy Leader Candice Bergen as they holda a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

After MP’s offensive tweet, O’Toole says Tories will counter anti-Semitism

MP Kerry-Lynne Findlay recently retweeted a video of Liberal Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland

By Emma McIntosh, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, National Observer

New Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole says he didn’t issue a statement about an offensive tweet from one of his MPs because it was taken down before he saw it.

MP Kerry-Lynne Findlay, the party’s environment critic, retweeted a video Saturday morning of Liberal Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland interviewing George Soros, a billionaire philanthropist who is often the subject of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, in 2009 when Freeland was a journalist. Canadians should be “alarmed” by Freeland and Soros’ closeness, Findlay wrote in the since-deleted post.

“When I found out about it, the tweet was already down and Ms. Findlay had apologized for it,” O’Toole told reporters in Ottawa on Wednesday when asked why he didn’t make a statement about the incident.

O’Toole didn’t answer when asked if he had spoken to Findlay about it. But he said he did call “some leaders from the Jewish community,” and said Conservatives under his leadership would continue to be strong advocates against anti-Semitism.

Conservative finance critic Pierre Poilievre retweeted Findlay’s post Saturday, but hasn’t commented publicly.

Findlay apologized in a followup tweet, but didn’t address her comments about Freeland and Soros. “Earlier today, I thoughtlessly shared content from what I am now learning is a source that promotes hateful conspiracy theories. I have removed the tweets and apologize to anyone who thinks I would want to endorse hateful rhetoric,” she wrote Saturday afternoon.

On Wednesday, O’Toole announced his core parliamentary team, naming Manitoba MP Candice Bergen as the party’s deputy leader.

Bergen previously served as Conservative house leader, a pivotal role that leads the party’s day-to-day duties in the House of Commons. Quebec MP Gerard Deltell will replace Bergen in that role.

Meanwhile, MP Richard Martel will be O’Toole’s political lieutenant for Quebec.

O’Toole’s house leadership team also includes MPs from Alberta and Ontario, but none from British Columbia.

The new leader said his party is the “government in waiting,” echoing words uttered by former leader Andrew Scheer on election night in 2019, and said he’s working on a new shadow cabinet and having discussions about writing a new platform.

“Conservatives are united and passionate to get to work,” O’Toole said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Conservative Party of Canada

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon’s Barb and Denis Murdoch, pictured at Lake Louise in 1987, will be inducted into the builder category of the B.C. Volleyball Hall of Fame, Class of 2021, on Feb. 15. (Murdoch family photo)
Vernon volleyball couple earn Hall of Fame call

Denis and Barb Murdoch will be inducted into B.C. Volleyball Hall of Fame in builder category

(File)
Overwhelming support for Vernon businesses this holiday season: Chamber

Vernon chamber urges shoppers to keep dollars local amid pandemic with #voteVernon campaign

Vernon Fire Rescue Services responded to reports of a structure fire on Valleyview Place Jan. 26, 2021. (Brendan Shykora - Vernon Morning Star)
Fire snuffed in Vernon home

No visible smoke, flames from area of reported structure fire

Vernon’s Noric House long-term care facility is dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Another death linked to COVID-19 outbreak at Vernon care home

It’s the sixth death at Noric House related to the virus to date

Design rendering for the proposed Coldstream Community Centre. An advisory committee will make a decision on the latest site plan Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021. (Sahuri & Associates rendering)
Coldstream committee to review latest designs for new community centre

Design renderings have been released for the centre that would add 84 local child care spaces

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

Kevin Lee Barrett pleaded guilty to the aggravated assault of his mother Eleanor Holmes on Tuesday, Jan. 26. (File)
West Kelowna man who beat his mom could be sentenced up to 9 years

Kevin Barrett entered a surprise guilty plea to the lesser charge of aggravated assault on Tuesday morning

Interior Health reported two more COVID-19 deaths at Sunnybank Retirement Center in Oliver Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021. (File photo)
COVID-19 claims lives of two more South Okanagan care home residents

Five residents of the Oliver care home have died since the outbreak was first declared

11 more cases of COVID-19 have been linked to a cluster on Big White Mountain. Pictured above is TELUS park at Big White Ski Resort, Jan. 26. (Big White Ski Resort)
11 more cases of COVID-19 linked to Big White cluster

This brings the total case count to 225, according to health authorities in a Tuesday update

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

Oliver Elementary School
Former Oliver PAC treasurer charged with fraud returns to court

Belinda Yorke will be in court to fix a date for trial in February

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Most Read