Raitt Calling for Leadership “Cheaters'” Expulsion

Conservative Leadership Candidate Lisa Raitt is calling for the expulsion of what she calls cheaters.  “Cheaters, and rule breakers who do this discourage the involvement of both our long standing and new party members.  It makes a mockery of their commitments and corrupts the process,” she said in a statement published by CBC News Monday.

Raitt is referring to the controversy between fellow candidates Maxime Bernier, and Kevin O’Leary.  It began late last week when O’Leary asked for a review of the membership lists alleging that backroom organizers used prepaid credit cards to sign up fake members.  The Conservatives suspended 1351 members found to have been bought inappropriately.

Bernier’s camp is now calling O’Leary a hypocrite.  They say they have proof  one of O’Leary’s Sikh-Canadian organizers offered to pay for memberships of six potential members in Brampton, Ontario. They submitted a sworn affidavit to the Globe & Mail alleging the practice, which, breaks party rules.

“I am calling for the expulsion of any candidate found to have broken the leadership rules and a significant fine for any campaign found to have authorized this type of activity, Raitt said.  Raitt has refused to speculate on who might be involved in the practice.

O’Leary’s Spokesperson Ari Lasken insists everything in legitimate.  “Mr. Chatha has not submitted any lists or memberships in bulk to the O’Leary campaign, and has only signed up his family,” Lasken said.

Potential party members have until March 28, 2017 at 5 p.m. to buy a membership in order to be eligible to vote for a leadership candidate.  Conservatives will pick a new leader May 27, 2017.