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Tory leadership candidate scorned for 'vile comments', but not by Scheer

Last Updated Apr 23, 2020 at 11:36 am PST

Conservative leadership candidate Derek Sloan posted a video in which he questions whether chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam works for Canada or for China. His comments have faced backlash from a number of Liberal and NDP MPs. (Screenshot Facebook video/Derek Sloan)
Summary

Conservative leadership candidate Derek Sloan's controversial comments on Dr. Theresa Tam are facing backlash

Sloan posted a video in which he questions if the country's chief public health officer works for Canada or China

Tory Leader Andrew Scheer refused to comment on the remarks, which have been described by some as 'vile'

OTTAWA – A Conservative MP is facing backlash after making controversial remarks and posting them online this week.

Tory leadership candidate Derek Sloan posted a video, Tuesday, in which he questions if the country’s chief public health officer works for Canada or China.

“One of the issues with Justin Trudeau’s handling of this situation has been his reliance on the advice of Dr. Theresa Tam,” Sloan says in the video.

“We sent an email out today asking, ‘Does she work for Canada or for China?’ And I encourage you to read that email, there’s some interesting information in there.”

His comments have come under fire, with some Liberal and NDP MPs calling them “race-baiting,” “disgusting,” “vile,” and “shameful.”

Despite the backlash, Conservative leader Andrew Scheer refused to condemn Sloan’s comments.

“I won’t be commenting on individual statements or positions that leadership candidates take, that’s up to them to explain,” Scheer said. “Ultimately, the members of our party will decide.”

On Thursday, Trudeau said during his daily briefing that “intolerance and racism have no place in our country.”

“Canada has succeeded because of our diversity — it is one of our greatest strengths,” he said. “The millions of Canadians of all different backgrounds who are working together — many, many of them on the frontlines to help their fellow Canadians — deserve better than this from all of us. We need to continue in our resolve to be an open, welcoming, respectful country, and I think all Canadians expect that of every politican.”

The Conservative Party of Canada suspended its leadership race last month in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Scheer announced he would step down after pressure reportedly applied from within the party following the most recent federal election.