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Ousted rebel Batters allowed to remain in Conservative Senate caucus

The decision by Conservative senators to keep Batters on suggests they are aiming to defy O’Toole.

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Although Conservative party leader Erin O’Toole has booted Sen. Denise Batters from the party’s caucus, Conservative senators have decided to keep Batters in their fold, according to The Canadian Press.

Tuesday, O’Toole ousted Batters from caucus after she launched a petition for a leadership review.

“People who are now allowing the frustrations and their own personal agendas or issues on the pandemic to interfere with our progress are not part of the team,” said O’Toole.

“We are focused. That is why we made the decision.”

“Sen. Batters is still a current member of the Senate Conservative Caucus,” said Karine Leroux, spokeswoman for Senate leader Don Plett.

O’Toole, on Wednesday, warned other party members they would also be kicked out of his caucus should they support Batters’ attempt to force an early confidence vote.

In 2018, Andrew Scheer kicked Sen. Lynn Beyak out of the national caucus for her defence of residential schools and remarks she made towards Indigenous Peoples that were deemed racist.  

Immediately following Scheer’s actions, the Conservative Senate caucus also booted Beyak.

The decision by Conservative senators to keep Batters on suggests they are aiming to defy O’Toole.

“As always, I continue to support Erin O’Toole’s strong and principled leadership to unite the Conservative Party of Canada,” Plett tweeted in support of O’Toole’s decision to kick Batters out.

Although Plett supports O’Toole’s decision, 17 other Conservative senators have decided to allow Batters to remain.

Batters said she had a lot of support from senators and MPs to launch the petition Monday rather than wait for the party’s 2023 national convention for O’Toole’s leadership review.

She also questioned why Sen. Michael MacDonald wasn’t booted when he questioned O’Toole’s ability to lead after the September 20th election.

“The status quo under the present circumstances is a mistake and a gift to the Liberals that this party and this country cannot afford,” MacDonald wrote to Conservative MPs.

Both Batters and MacDonald said O’Toole’s loss of seats in the fall election constituted a failure in their leader’s plan to present the party as more moderate and centrist.

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard
mrisdon@westernstandardonline.com

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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. M S

    November 19, 2021 at 5:46 pm

    The Tool must go…He pandered to the Woke. He had the chance to grow a set, man up and put the screws to JT but shit the bed and steered left. Round two will come quicker than we think…The masses are hypnotized by C19 and unless a real voice is there, Max and the PPC mop up what’s left of and it’s a split the right handing the keys to the Woke yet again. THEN comes the climate monster…Just while you were napping from the C19, they will have everyone believing carbon is taxable and a just cause…BE AFRAID!!!

  2. Left Coast

    November 19, 2021 at 4:28 pm

    O’Toole was a liar & fraud during the Leadership race . . . who is surprised that he is so inept and clueless today. His plan to defeat Justine was to act like Justin . . . no one with 3 functioning brain cells thought that would work.

    The Senator is correct . . . had they persecuted her more she could have been the First PPC Senator.

    Erin O’Foole is just another useless Ontario Progressive like Ford.

  3. Ben Wilson

    November 19, 2021 at 4:21 pm

    I do think O’tool needs to face a leadership review. But there is no hurry. 4 years to the next Election.

    O’tool has all the right skills. But, he changed the game plan and became Liberal Light in hopes of winning. Had he won, he would have been forgiven. But he lost, so I don’t think I can support him going forward.

    The fact O’tool took action against a person who does not support him is a nothing burger to me. Any leader would do this. My concern is I want a conservative leader, not a Liberal Light leader.

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Manitobans shipped to US for surgery

The move is an effort to deal with the province’s backlog of more than 153,000 surgical and diagnostic procedures, blamed on COVID-19 health care demands.

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About 300 Manitobans awaiting spinal surgery will be sent to Sanford Medical Centre in Fargo ND for their operations.

The move is an effort to deal with the province’s backlog of more than 153,000 surgical and diagnostic procedures, blamed on COVID-19 health care demands.

Patients who have been on the spinal surgery waiting list for more than a year will be given priority. Some may be headed south of the border by the end of January.

Health Minister Audrey Gordon and members of the Diagnostic and Surgical Recovery Task Force are expected to provide an update at a 2 p.m. CST news conference.

The province may also be contemplating sending joint-surgery patients to Sanford.

“We acknowledge the suffering. We acknowledge the waits,” said Dr. Ed Buchel, the provincial surgery lead for Manitoba Shared Health told CBC.

Sending patients elsewhere in Canada isn’t an option because every provincial health care system is overwhelmed with demands from the Omicron variant, he said.

Health staff have been diverted from operating rooms to care for COVID-19 patients while surgery backlogs escalated.

Patients suffering broken backs, unstable spines or cancer are deemed too risky for surgery in the U.S.

Preference will be given to those with serious conditions needing urgent attention, yet are able to travel by vehicle to Sanford, 360 km from Winnipeg.

Doctors Manitoba hopes this is a short-term measure.

“Sending patients out of Manitoba for care is not ideal, but we understand the task force has very few local options right now because of the shortage of staff and the current surge in Omicron hospital admissions,” spokesperson Keir Johnson said in a statement to CBC.

At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Manitoba was the only province that transferred critical care patients, 57 in all, out-of-province.

To be updated…

Slobodian is the Senior Manitoba Columnist for the Western Standard lslobodian@westernstandardonline.com

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WORLD WATCH: UK announces COVID restrictions are over

Beginning Thursday, January 27, the UK government will bring an end to “mandatory certifications” — vaccine passports.

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The UK government will no longer require vaccine passports and mask mandates as of next Thursday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the House of Commons.

“We can return to plan A in England and allow plan B regulations to expire,” said Johnson, in a live address on Wednesday. 

Beginning Thursday, January 27, the UK government will bring an end to “mandatory certifications” — vaccine passports.

Johnson said organizations will be permitted to continue the voluntary pass but the government will “end the compulsory use of COVID status certification in England.”

The government also announced it will no longer require people to work from home.

With the announcement the government will no longer mandate the wearing of face masks, the house erupted with cheers.

Johnson confirmed students would no longer be required to wear facemasks in classrooms as of Thursday, but added the government will continue to suggest the use of masks in public places.

“We will trust the judgement of the British people and no longer criminalize anyone who chooses not to wear one,” said Johnson.

Restrictions on visits to care homes will also be eased across the UK.

Johnson said some measures will remain in place including self-isolation.

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard
mrisdon@westernstandardonline.com

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CTF calls for tax cuts as inflation hits 30 year high

The December 2021 consumer price index hit 4.8%, according to Statistics Canada on Wednesday.

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The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on the Canadian government to reduce taxes to help people with the rising cost of living.

The December 2021 consumer price index hit 4.8%, according to Statistics Canada on Wednesday.

“Canadians are fueling up at the pumps and then worrying about whether they have enough left over for ground beef at the grocery store,” said Franco Terrazzano, federal director of the CTF.

“Inflation is a key economic issue facing Canadian families and our politicians need to wake up and provide some relief.”

Canadians who make more than $64,900 are going to see an extra $396 in payroll tax bills this year, according to the CTF.

The federal carbon tax increased twice during the pandemic and will increase again to 11 cents per litre of gasoline on April 1, 2022.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said carbon tax will be increasing to nearly 40 cents per litre by 2030, as well as a second carbon tax is being developed that could add another 11 cents per litre.

Additionally, the federal government is planning for an increase in alcohol taxes for the third time during the pandemic on April 1.

“High taxes and soaring prices are making the tough times tougher in Canada,” said Terrazzano.

“While other countries are cutting taxes, all we get from Canadian politicians are higher tax bills. It’s time for Ottawa to provide some tax relief and make life in Canada a little more affordable.”

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole also called on Trudeau to take immediate action.

“For the first time in 30 years, prices are up 4.8% compared to a year ago. Millions of Canadians are feeling the pinch of inflation in their daily lives. Families and seniors are falling behind and they see the Trudeau government doing nothing to give them a break,” said O’Toole in a statement.

“Food is more expensive. Gas and home heating are costing more. Rents in many cities are skyrocketing by double digits and home ownership is out of reach for millions as prices are up a staggering 26.6% in just one year.   

“More Canadians are struggling to meet ends meet, young people are giving up on home ownership and nearly half of all Canadians are worried about their financial security for the upcoming year. The high-tax, high-debt lockdown agenda of the Trudeau government has set the stage for inflation and COVID policies are making supply chain challenges worse. We are already seeing alarming shortages on shelves leading to higher prices.”

The CTF noted Spain was rated lower than Canada on the 2021 misery index, but that country’s government is taking action giving citizens breaks by cutting added tax on electricity from 21% to 10% until April 30.

South Korea, India, and several states across America have also reduced fuel taxes.

Ewa Sudyk is a reporter with the Western Standard
esudyk@westernstandardonline.com

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