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Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer holds dual Canadian-U.S. citizenship

Last Updated Oct 4, 2019 at 10:05 am PDT

FILE: Conservative party Leader Andrew Scheer says if elected his government would create a certification system to let consumers know if certain digital products meet federal safety standards. Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer holds dual Canadian and U.S. citizenship.

He is now in the process of renouncing that citizenship, he says, but so far, there has been no confirmation from the United States that it has officially been renounced.

Scheer’s father is an American, and Scheer and his sisters received their U.S. passports as children. The Globe and Mail, which first reported the story, said he let his American passport lapse and attempted to renounce it before the election writ dropped.

In Nova Scotia on Thursday he defended himself for not publicly declaring his citizenship in the past, despite being a Member of Parliament for 15 years and speaker of the House of Commons.

“No one’s ever asked me before about it,” he said. “Like millions of Canadians, one of my parents was born in another country.”

Brock Harrison, Scheer’s Director of Communications for the campaign, said the leader has not voted in any American elections.

“Once Mr. Scheer became leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, he decided he would renounce his US citizenship before the election,” Harrison said in a statement. “He has submitted his paperwork and is currently waiting for confirmation from the embassy that he is no longer a dual-citizen.”

Former Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Scheer himself have both, in the past, been critical of politicians who were also citizens of another country.

In previous years, Liberal Stephane Dion, New Democrat Thomas Mulcair and former Governor General Michaelle Jean all came under fire from the Conservatives for holding dual passports with France. In 2015, Harper called himself “a Canadian and only a Canadian.”

The Globe and Mail reports Scheer has been paying American taxes, which is the law.