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Scheer resigns as Tory leader, use of party money questioned

Conservative party leader Andrew Scheer has resigned.




Conservative party leader Andrew Scheer has resigned.

Scheer told the Tory caucus about his decision Thursday morning in Ottawa.

Scheer said the choice to resign was “the most difficult decision I have ever made.”

“This party needs someone who can give 100 per cent…I have decided to put my family first.”

“The party is far too important for one person.”

Scheer also made an appeal for Tories to stay united.

“My only request is let’s stay united – let’s stay focussed on our one shared goal in our one shared priority to make life better for all Canadians,” an emotional-looking Scheer told the House of Commons.

“I believe in our movement, I got involved as a team because I love this party, and I ran because I love this party, and I ran for leader because I wanted to help this party.”

Global News reported Scheer resigned after it was revealed he had been using Conservative Party money to pay for his children’s private school.

Global reported: “Members of the Conservative Fund are outraged and demanded Scheer’s resignation when they found out party money was being spent on private schooling. Sources say the expenditures were made without the knowledge or approval of the Fund.”

Later confirmed by Scheer’s office, former Tory MP Lisa Raitt said the agreement was news to her.

“Somer party members will be incredibly upset…and shocked,” Raitt told CTV.

Scheer will “have to answer for” the use of party donations, she said.

Scheer’s office said the move was above board and money was used to cover the difference in cost between schools in his home riding in Regina and one in Ottawa.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau praised Scheer after the announcement, especially his love of family.

Scheer said he has asked the party to start the leadership process immediately and will stay on as MP for Regina—Qu’Appelle, a seat he has held since 2004.

The leadership knives came out for Scheer after he failed to knock off Trudeau in an election most pundits say he could have won considering all the scandals the PM was embroiled in.

Many of his problems came from his handling of social issues like abortion and refusing to march in gay pride parades.

Websites had even sprung up demanding he resign.

Scheer became Tory leader in May 2017, barely beating Maxime Bernier.

Former MP John Baird is currently working on a report for the party on what went wrong.

–more to come

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years.

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Supreme Court rules against B.C. in battle over TMX pipeline

In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled against B.C. and their attempt to control what can be shipped in the TMX pipeline.




In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled against B.C. and their attempt to control what can be shipped in the TMX pipeline.

Chief Justice Richard Wagner said the court will let an earlier B.C. Court of Appeal decision that the pipeline was a federal issue stand.

If B.C. had been successful they could have effectively blocked heavy oil from being shipped through the pipeline.

The court’s ruling came the same day as both sides made oral arguments for their cases. The justice’s mulled their decision for only 30 minutes.

Supreme Court of Canada
Courtesy Wikipedia

B.C. Premier John Horgan has opposed the expansion of the pipeline that could carry 890,000 barrels of crude oil a day to the west coast for export.

The Trans Mountain expansion project went through a years-long federal review by the National Energy Board and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency .

It has also been twice approved by the federal Liberal cabinet.

“If you have a pipeline and you can’t put anything through it, it’s totally useless. That frustrates the federal permitting process does it not?” Justice MalcomRowe said Thursday.

“Today, it’s heavy oil. Tomorrow, it could be anything else.”

Supreme Court justices
Courtesy the Supreme Court of Canada

Alberta Justice Minister Doug Schweitzer was thrilled with the ruling.

“The Supreme Court of Canada has upheld the rule of law and put an end to the British Columbia government’s campaign of obstruction against Alberta energy,” Schweitzer said in a statement.

“By ensuring that B.C. must respect the federal government’s rigorous process in approving TMX, this outcome will have major ramifications for the project and its profound importance to Albertans and all Canadians.

“Building the TMX and ensuring a fair price for our natural resources will create thousands of new jobs and increased prosperity that will benefit the entire country.”

Ottawa bought the project from its original U.S. proponent, Kinder Morgan, in 2018, for $4.5 billion.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has called the pipeline “in the interests of Canada.”

The pipeline has been in use since 1953 between Alberta and Burnaby.

There is still a case against the pipeline pending in the Federal Court of Canada.

Twitter: Nobby7694

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Manning Centre to rebrand as namesake retires

The retirement of Preston Manning has the centre he created looking to rebrand under a different name.




The retirement of Preston Manning has the centre he created looking to rebrand under a different name.

In a note sent to supporters Thursday, officials from the Manning Centre said Preston, 77, was retiring and stepping down from the group’s board.

Manning Centre logo

The Manning Centre was founded in 2005 to support “Canada’s conservative movement by networking best practices and ideas pertaining to limited government, free enterprise, individual responsibility and a more robust civil society.”

It’s stated mission is “to strengthen Canada’s conservative movement by nurturing, supporting, and facilitating exchanges and stronger relationships amongst the movement’s various components.”

In their note, the non-profit Manning Centre said Preston’s final book is coming out next month and he’s off on a cross-Canada tour Feb. 24 to promote it.

“Preston is not all that is going into retirement…the Manning name will be coming off the Centre and its networking conferences,” said the letter.

The group is now considering ideas on how to rebrand but stress their mission will remain the same.

Manning was a founder and the only leader of the Reform Party.

That party evolved into the Canadian Alliance party which, in turn, merged with the Progressive Conservative Party to form the Conservative Party of Canada.

Manning represented the federal constituency of Calgary Southwest in Parliament from 1993 til 2002. He was leader of the Opposition from 1997 to 2000.

Twitter: Nobby7694

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Unifor won’t apologize after doxxing wrong man

Doherty acknowledged the mistaken use of Patel’s photo but did not offer an apology for the mix-up.




A restaurant owner in Regina was surprised to learn his photo was being circulated in a Unifor union video called “Meet the Scabs”.

Kalpesh Patel discovered a photo from his Facebook account was used in the video after receiving calls on January 10. Patel then contacted a lawyer who wrote a letter to Unifor asking them to remove his photo.

Initially, Unifor defended the accuracy of the video but it was taken down from the union’s Twitter account and Mr. Patel’s likeness was edited out.

Chad Zipchian, co-owner of Birmingham’s Vodka and Ale in Regina said they aren’t taking sides but said Patel and the restaurant would defend themselves after being wrongly identified as having anything to do with the strike or the replacement workers.

Scott Doherty, Executive Assistant to the Unifor National President, acknowledged the mistaken use of Patel’s photo but did not offer any apology for the mix-up.

“A photo of a person named Kalpesh Patel no longer appears in Unifor’s ‘Meet the Scabs’ video posted on Twitter. We are still trying to locate a photo of another individual with the same name who is working at the refinery for our next video, in an attempt to discourage scabs,” Doherty said in an emailed statement.

‘Scabs’ or ‘replacement workers’ allow a company to continue operations while a union is on strike – or in the case of Local 594 who represents employees from Co-op Refinery in Regina, Saskatchewan – locked out.

Doherty says unions aren’t breaking any laws when they publicize names and photos of people who cross picket lines.

“To be clear, no one crossing a picket line has an expectation of privacy,” he said.

“The Supreme Court of Canada has affirmed a union’s right to photograph scabs in (a) 2013 decision”.

The case, Alberta (Information and Privacy Commissioner) v. United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 401 2013, SCC 62, upheld the Alberta Court of Appeal’s decision that the union’s right to freedom of expression was unduly hampered by the Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) and granted a constitutional exemption.

Local 594 president Kevin Bittman said his team did not make the video nor had they shared it through their social media channels.

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