Opposition Leader Andrew Scheer. (The Canadian Press)

Opposition Leader Andrew Scheer. (The Canadian Press)

Scheer calls on Trudeau to resign over WE deal

Andrew Scheer has previously called for Finance Minister Bill Morneau to be fired

Outgoing Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau should resign over his role in the controversy involving the WE organization.

Scheer has previously called for Finance Minister Bill Morneau to be fired for trips he and members of his family took in 2017, part of which were paid for by WE Charity.

“In the past, just being under investigation was enough for members of Parliament to step aside, put their country ahead of their own ego, ahead of their own political careers, step aside and allow the work that government must continue to do to proceed without that cloud of suspicion,” Scheer told reporters Friday in Regina.

“None of that has happened under Justin Trudeau so that’s why this conversation is turning to stricter penalties.”

In what appears to be an attempt to drive a wedge between Trudeau and members of his own caucus, Scheer now says Liberal MPs who do not want to be seen as complicit in this controversy should demand that their leader quit.

“Liberal MPs have a choice to make: are they prepared to sacrifice their personal integrity to protect their scandal-plagued leader and to cover up corruption or are they willing to take a stand and demand that Trudeau step aside?” he said.

“If the Liberals refuse to act, if they sit on their hands and say nothing, then they are implicitly approving of this corrupt behaviour and they will be just as guilty as Justin Trudeau is.”

When asked if he would be willing to force an election over the issue in the minority Parliament, Scheer said such an opportunity will not come until the House of Commons resumes full business in September, which he says is why Trudeau and Morneau should leave now of their own accord.

He also says a decision about seeking to defeat the Liberal government on a confidence motion should be made by the next leader of the party after results of the Conservative leadership contest are announced in late August.

Scheer dismissed the suggestion that replacing Trudeau and Morneau in the middle of a pandemic would create further uncertainty in the country.

“It would allow the government to move on, past these scandals, and focus on improving the lives of Canadians,” he said.

On Wednesday, Morneau told a Commons committee he had just repaid WE Charity more than $41,000 for expenses the group covered for trips his family took to Kenya and Ecuador in 2017 to see some of its humanitarian work. He said he had always planned to personally cover those amounts.

WE said the Morneau family trips were meant to be complimentary, part of a practice of showing donors WE’s work to encourage them to give more.

Both Morneau and Trudeau are facing an ethics investigation for not recusing themselves during discussions about awarding WE a deal to run the government’s $912-million program that would pay students grants of up to $5,000 based on the hours they volunteer.

Trudeau and Morneau have apologized for not declaring possible conflicts because of their familial ties to the organization — Trudeau because of speaking fees paid to his brother, mother and wife, and Morneau because one of his daughters is nearing the end of a one-year contract in an administrative role.

Teresa Wright, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Justin Trudeau

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A Nanaimo man will serve nine months in jail for the sexual assault of a young girl he admitted to having committed more than 40 years ago. (News Bulletin file photo)
Nanaimo man sentenced for sexually abusing girl more than 40 years ago

Man, now 71, gets nine-month sentence for abuse of friend’s daughter

A youth was arrested following a car crash on Wallace Street on Saturday, April 10. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo teen arrested a day after allegedly assaulting and bullying victim

Teen taken into custody after wielding weapon and threatening driver at scene of car crash

‘We Are All Beautiful’ by Elise Cole and ‘The Modern Thrall’ by Enigye (Happy) Amarkah (from left) are two of the pieces featured in VIU’s Anti-Racism Arts Festival. (Images courtesy the artists)
Vancouver Island University holds first Anti-Racism Arts Festival

Three-day online event to feature visual arts, performance, film and poetry

Killer whales surface near Sebastion Beach in Lantzville on Sunday, April 11. (Photo courtesy Ella Smiley)
Orcas near the beach thrill whale watchers in Lantzville

Jagged-finned orca named Chainsaw and 17 others spent hours off Sebastion Beach this weekend

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ district administration centre. (News Bulletin file)
Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district gets started on new budget amid unknowns

Ministry’s per-student funding increase doesn’t fully cover pay raises for teachers and support staff

Killer whales surface near Sebastion Beach in Lantzville on Sunday, April 11. (Photo courtesy Ella Smiley)
Orcas near the beach thrill whale watchers in Lantzville

Jagged-finned orca named Chainsaw and 17 others spent hours off Sebastion Beach this weekend

In Ontario, COVID-19 vaccine clinics have been set up at local mosques. (Submitted photo: Rufaida Mohammed)
Getting the vaccine does not break your fast, says Muslim COVID-19 task force

Muslim community ‘strongly’ encouraging people to get their shot, whether or not during Ramadan

A vehicle that was driven through the wall of a parkade at Uptown Shopping Centre and into the nearby Walmart on April 9 was removed through another hole in the wall later that night. (Photo via Saanich Police Department and Ayush Kakkar)
Police: mental health crisis likely in car driven through Saanich Walmart wall

Man in his early 20s drove through a parkade wall, no serious injuries reported

A plane is seen through the window on the tarmac of Vancouver International Airport as the waiting room is empty. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
100+ international travellers who landed in B.C. refused to quarantine

The Public Health Agency of Canada says it issued $3,000 violation tickets to each

A health-care worker holds up a vial of the AstraZeneca Covishield vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Montreal, Thursday, March 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
PHAC receives first report of blood clot linked to AstraZeneca

The federal agency says the person is now recovering at home

The Campbell River Gun Club outdoor range is located on Argonaut Road west of Campbell River. CRGC/Facebook photo
Campbell River Gun Club range shut down after complaints of stray bullets

Neighbour says bullets hit caretaker’s RV and shattered a glass panel on his deck

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve’s Green Point Campground saw an unprecedented flurry of reservations last week. (Pacific Rim National Park Reserve photo)
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve campground sees ‘unprecedented’ interest

Reservations being accepted as Green Point Campground scheduled to open May 1

Restaurant owners Oura and Kymon Giakoumakis visit the PQB News/VI Free Daily studio. (Peter McCully photo)
PODCAST: COVID-19 pandemic hits Island’s food service industry hard

Pair of Vancouver Island restaurant owners share thoughts and advice

A real estate sign is pictured in Vancouver, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward
1 in 3 young Canadians have given up on owning a home: poll

Data released Monday says 36% of adults younger than 40 have given up on home ownership entirely

Most Read