June 22nd, 2024

Deputy Speaker says he had no involvement in Conservative party ad

By Anja Karadeglija, The Canadian Press on May 30, 2024.

The NDP says an advertisement for a Conservative Party event featuring a photo of deputy Speaker Chris d'Entremont in his official robes violates the neutrality of the speakers’ office. D'entremont reads in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Monday, March 18, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Spencer Colby

OTTAWA – Deputy Speaker Chris d’Entremont says he did not approve an advertisement for a Conservative party event that led the NDP to accuse him of partisanship.

The NDP said an advertisement for a party event featuring a photo of d’Entremont in his official robes violates the neutrality of his office.

NDP MP Lindsay Mathyssen asked the Conservatives to clarify in the House of Commons Thursday afternoon whether d’Entremont knew about or approved the ad.

In an emailed statement, d’Entremont said the Facebook post advertising the event was made by a volunteer for a riding association he has no involvement with.

“The choice of photograph and wording of this social media post was neither my own nor was it approved by me. It appears the photo is simply one plucked from the House of Commons website and certainly was not a photo which was specially taken for this purpose,” the statement said.

“Had I been shown or asked to review a draft of this Facebook post, I would’ve never approved it.”

The advertisement for a November event organized by the Dartmouth-Cole Harbour Conservative Association describes d’Entremont as a party luminary.

Conservative MPs have repeatedly tried to get House of Commons Speaker Greg Fergus, a Liberal MP, to resign over allegations he is too partisan for the role.

That included the most recent attempt earlier this week, which came after the Liberal party uploaded a video to its website that promoted a summer barbecue event featuring Fergus that used partisan language without getting Fergus’s consent. The Liberal party apologized to Fergus over the post.

Deputy government House leader Mark Gerretsen said in a post on social media site X that the Conservative party ad amounts to d’Entremont using his Speaker’s robes for fundraising.

D’Entremont said in his statement the event was a “free-admission meet-and-greet event.” The event ad says raffle tickets would be sold at the door.

He said he has asked the riding association to remove the post.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 30, 2024.

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