When Erin O’Toole was campaigning to become the leader of the Conservative Party some 13 months ago, he endlessly stated that he was the “pro-free speech/anti-cancel culture” guy. Well, try telling that to Lisa Robinson, who, until last week, was the Conservative candidate for the Toronto riding of Beaches-East York.
Here’s the story: on Friday Sept. 10, Nathaniel Erskine-Smith, the incumbent Liberal candidate for Beaches-East York, published a tweet with a number of screenshots that were allegedly snatched from Robinson's social media feed. One of the statements was considered to be Islamophobic. However, Robinson claims she never wrote those comments, and that the account isn’t even hers. In fact, Robinson says this smear campaign against her goes back to 2018, when she was running for municipal office. When the defamatory comments surfaced, Robinson says she reported the incident to police.
So, when these comments resurfaced yet again, Robinson requested that her Liberal rival delete the defamatory accusations and apologize; the Erskine-Smith camp, meanwhile, told Robinson she would have to prove her innocence first.
Alas, time was not on Robinson’s side. She would have to file a freedom of information request in order to obtain the police report, something that would take at least 30 days (and thus, wouldn’t be available until after the election).
But at the end of the day, it would appear that Robinson’s real enemy was not the Liberal camp, but her own party.
In an exclusive interview with Rebel News, Robinson said that when the accusations against surfaced on Friday morning, Conservative party staff told her that they “had her back,” and that the party’s legal team would fight tooth and nail for her. But by Friday evening, the story had changed. Suddenly, party head honchos were pressuring Robinson to resign — or she’d be fired. The party was “gracious” enough to forward her a mental health crisis hotline number, in case she had suicidal thoughts upon being turfed. Now, that’s compassion…
Yet, the question arises: why did the party so radically change its position in less than 24 hours? Apparently, a barrage of phone calls from the mainstream media regarding Robinson caused the Erin O’Toole war room to collapse and wave the white flag of surrender.
Robinson, who still maintains her innocence, was unceremoniously turfed. Cory Hann, communications director for the Conservative party, issued the following statement: “Racism and Islamophobia has no place in the Conservative Party of Canada. Our expectation is that all of our candidates conduct themselves in a respectful, tolerant manner. Consequently, we have terminated this individual as a candidate."
To add insult to injury, Robinson’s Liberal opponent, Erskine-Smith, tweeted the following: "Our community has faced down hate too many times already, and it's unacceptable that the Conservative Party is giving a platform to someone with these views.”
And yet, Robinson asks, whatever happened to the concept of innocent until proven guilty?
As well, she points out that she was fully vetted by the party – including her social media history – before being named the Conservative candidate for Beaches-East York. In other words, the party would’ve likely known about this controversy from when it first erupted in 2018.
As well, Robinson laments that while she would like to proceed with a defamation lawsuit, as a single mom, she does not have the financial resources to pursue such an initiative.
Bottom line: that the Liberal party would embrace a smear campaign and dirty politics against a Conservative candidate is hardly newsworthy. But for Erin (“pro-free speech/anti-cancel culture”) O’Toole to bend the knee so quickly, due to persistent queries from the mean girls of the Media Party is shocking. So, the question arises: does this man who would be Prime Minister stand for… anything?