February 18

Ontario Liberal MP pays for ads to shut down Alberta jobs

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Mark Gerretsen represents the Ontario riding of Kingston and the Islands. It’s a long way from Fort McMurray but that isn’t stopping the Liberal MP from not only opposing the project but spending money, perhaps your money, to shut it down.

Gerretsen has posted on Facebook about a petition put forward by the Queen’s University Liberals, and sponsored in the House by Gerretsen, to reject the proposal.

“We, the undersigned, citizens of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to reject the proposal to build the Teck Resources Frontier Oilsands Mine in Alberta as it is not in the best interest of Canadians,” the petition reads.

Isn’t this the equivalent of an Alberta MP asking the federal government to shut down Ontario’s manufacturing sector? Or calling for a stop to all the tax breaks to Toronto’s film productions? That wouldn’t go over too well in Ontario and this won’t go over well in Alberta.

As I write, the petition has 664 signatures after a full week. Despite the fact that this will likely go up, it’s a pretty anemic petition. Especially when you consider all the help this cause gets from Liberal MPs and from a media that seems intent on shutting it down.

Gerretsen is paying for clicks

What is strange about all of this is that this Ontario Liberal MP is paying to put this ad in front of more people. At this point, Gerretsen has paid between $300 and $400 to promote this petition.

Pretty sad results. Gerretsen has 22,253 people who like his page and his ad has put the petition in front of more than 50,000 people. That means about 75,000 people have been exposed to his call, complete with siren emojis, and fewer than 700 people have signed in a week.

Who is paying?

I did ask Gerretsen’s office whether he was paying for the ad out of his own pocket or if taxpayers were footing the bill in one way or another. I asked whether he was using an office budget instead of his own wallet. So far, there has been no answer.

Liberal MP John McKay told the Canadian Press that members of the governing party, “are ‘darn close’ to unanimous in their opposition to the Teck mine.”

So that means we might see the Liberals turn down a $20 billion private investment in Canadian oil and gas just months after they gave approval to allow a Chinese company, CNOOC, to begin exploring new oil fields off the coast of Newfoundland.

Once again this shows that for the Liberals, this isn’t about climate change or the environment, it’s about who voted for them and who didn’t.

Want to know what the local First Nations leaders think of this project? Watch them speak in their own words.


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