A call readout prematurely released by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) hints that Justin Trudeau was planning on raising concerns with Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole over alleged “misinformation” being spread by members of the Conservative Party.
“The Prime Minister also raised concerns around COVID-19 misinformation being promoted by Conservative Members of Parliament, given Conservative MPs recently downplayed the deaths of Canadians in Alberta due to COVID-19 and compared COVID-19 to the flu,” the readout purportedly claims.
According to O’Tooles Director of Communications Melanie Paradis, that call was to be scheduled for 5:15 p.m. today, nearly half an hour after the PMO readout was released.
The readout follows Liberal Health Minister Patty Hajdu’s accusations during Thursday’s question period where she alleged that Conservative MPs were spreading “dangerous fake news.”
“Mr. Speaker, do you know what will help Canadians’ lives? If the member opposite and the leader of the opposition stop their members from sharing fake and dangerous news like the member from Lethridge and the member of Carleton stay focused on saving lives of Canadians instead of spreading conspiracy theories,” said Hajdu.
Hajdu’s accusations partly targeted a column on recently released Alberta coronavirus data written by Toronto Sun writer and True North contributor Anthony Furey.
In the column, Furey discusses official government statistics and cites medical professionals on coronavirus comorbidities in the province. The statistics indicated that only ten people in otherwise good health have died from the pandemic.
“What does this tell us? For one, that there are a number of persons out there who are facing multiple serious health challenges and that they are particularly vulnerable to dying from COVID-19. Their lives matter and we need to think of ways to better serve them,” writes Furey.
“The flip-side of this is that it also tells us how very few people who are not suffering from a previous medical condition have actually died of COVID-19.”
The PMO sent out a revised release after the meeting between the two leaders concluded and omitted any mention of “misinformation”.