Two Conservative MPs are suing a municipal politician for defamation after he inferred that they were racists over Facebook.
John Brassard (Barrie-Innisfil) and Alex Nuttall (Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte), are suing Barrie City Councillor Keenan Aylwin after Aylwin made Facebook posts which inferred a connection between the MPs and white nationalists.
“They are playing footsies with white supremacists who have inspired violence,” Aylwin said.
Aylwin also demanded that Nuttall and Brassard publically distance themselves from “Faith Goldy, anti-immigration groups and all white supremacist and hateful rhetoric” and apologize for “the harm they caused by not doing so.”
There is no known connection between the MPs and any white supremacist group.
Rather than tolerate Aylwin spreading unsubstantiated rumours, both MPs filed separate lawsuits, claiming that Aylwin intended to mean that they were racists and have inspired violence.
They are both claiming $100,000 for damages.
Both also made complaints to the city government that Aylwin’s posts violated the city’s code of conduct.
Both men have been Barrie City Councillors in the past.
Barrie’s integrity commissioner agreed with Brassard and Nuttall, condemning Alywin for his “baseless” claims.
“In no way am I saying that a member of council does not have the right to free speech. It is just not unlimited,” she said, referring to Aylwin’s claims.
Among Aylwin’s other claims were that Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer “appeared on the same stage” as Faith Goldy at the United We Roll rally in Ottawa.
As reported by True North, there was a massive mischaracterization of the United We Roll convoy perpetuated by the mainstream media.
Faith Goldy did not speak on stage as Scheer, she spoke to a group separate from the main rally.
United We Roll, who put on the rally, is not associated with any extremist organization or individual, going so far as publicly distancing themselves from Yellow Vests Canada.
Barrie City Council voted to publicly denounce Aylwin’s posts, and order he be reprimanded.
These lawsuits by Brassard and Nuttall represent a strong warning to those who insinuate the Conservative Party is partial to racism, which Andrew Scheer recently condemned.
“There is absolutely no room in a peaceful and free country like Canada for intolerance, racism, and extremism of any kind. I find the notion that one’s race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation would make them in any way superior to anybody else absolutely repugnant,” Scheer said.
“And if there’s anyone who disagrees with that, there’s the door. You are not welcome here.”