Typically I expect American politicians to lash out at foreigners and speak of them as less than human. But for a Manitoba backbencher with the Progressive Conservatives, I wouldn’t have expected such Americanisms like “illegals” and “drain on society” – or did I? Is President Trump now having an affect on our politics?
Unfortunately for Cliff Graydon, he put his foot in his mouth with a series of tweets that forced him to him pull away from social media and take sensitivity training.
For his remarks where Graydon referred to asylum seekers as, basically, a burden to Canada, it caused an uproar considering he represents Emerson where a lot of these folks are trying to seek refuge.
It didn’t end there. Graydon previously re-tweeted posts that called the prime minister “a disgrace” with the hashtag “scumbag.” Late last year he also re-tweeted a question, “How can any woman vote for that SICK/RETARDED/TRAITOR?” and used the word “turdeau.”
Has the legacy of President Name-Calling affected politics north of the border? Has Canada been so influenced by conflict and drama of the American political system that it’s happening here?
Political parties are known to clash and disagree. In fact, that’s what makes most voters shrug their shoulders and say, “Whatever.”
But is Canada headed for this type of behaviour? Are people suddenly realizing that nothing happens to a president when he bad mouths others so what have they got to lose? I guess we’ll see how things play out in the coming months.
If there is one good thing it’s that Canadians aren’t consumed with politics as our counterparts to the south so most people probably hadn’t heard about the uproar.
I should point out that Graydon apologized for his actions saying, “Above all political debates must be respected.” A rep from the PC caucus said in a statement, “These tweets do not reflect the views of our caucus and our government.”