CANADA POLITICS Poilivre and Lewis are officially out of the third...

Poilivre and Lewis are officially out of the third Conservative debate

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The two most prominent contenders for the Conservative leadership will not take part in the party’s final official debate.

Conservative officials confirmed that Pierre Poilivre and Leslyn Lewis told party officials that they would not participate in the August 3 debate in Ottawa.

That leaves Jean Charet, Roman Baber and Scott Aitchison to discuss it for 90 minutes on Wednesday at 6:00 pm ET.

Under party rules, both Poilevre and Lewis are now required to automatically pay a $50,000 fine for missing official debates. Both have already made it clear that they are unhappy with the decision to hold a third debate.

Poilivre senior adviser Jenny Byrne released a statement last week saying the party’s first formal debate in Edmonton was “widely regarded as a disgrace” and laying the blame on the party for the choice of moderator and format.

Byrne wrote that since the time for registration of new members had expired, Poilivre should be on the road “without interruption”, forcing members to fill out their ballots. She ridiculed Chareste, stating that he needed Poillivere’s participation in the debate in order to attract an audience.

Meanwhile, Lewis publicly shared a letter she sent to the Conservative steering committee. In it, Lewis claimed that she had not received any information about the format of the debate and that she had told the party that she would not be available on the day scheduled for the event.

She asked the committee if the debate would be about “the usual questions” about projects and budgets, or would instead focus on issues she says she hears from conservatives every day, such as calls for an inquiry into Canada’s response to the pandemic and fears about the World Economic Forum. .

The Conservative Party held an online vote, asking members to weigh whether a third debate is warranted. It says there is an “overwhelming consensus” in favor of the debate, which it calls a “key opportunity” to help members decide who should lead the party.

Earlier this month, the party began sending out rating ballots to members, and about 80,000 have already been returned, a party spokesman said.

Patrick Brown’s name appears on this ballot despite his disqualification by officials on July 5 following what a party leadership committee called “serious allegations of misconduct” related to campaign finance.

Charest thinks Poilivre deserves ‘freedom’

The Charest campaign used the upcoming debate as an opportunity to mock Poilivere.

Hours before the party confirmed that MP Carlton would not be participating in the debate, Charest’s campaign released an online video titled “It’s time for #FreePierre” – apparently a reference to Poillivre’s campaign theme of freedom.

The Conservatives have until September 6 at 5:00 pm ET to mail in an envelope with their ballots. The winner will be announced on September 10th.



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