Election complaint filed against Burnaby’s Heather Leung rejected

A Burnaby North-Seymour voter has had his complaint against federal candidate Heather Leung rejected.

Stephen Meighan filed a complaint with the Commissioner of Canada Elections over Leung’s campaign practices after she was fired by the Conservative Party of Canada.

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The Conservatives dumped Leung as its candidate in Burnaby North-Seymour after the Burnaby NOW wrote about comments she made in 2011 claiming that “homosexuals recruit” children. She continued to use campaign signs emblazoned with the Conservative logo.

Meighan took issue with this, but received a response saying his complaint had been rejected.

Thank you for your correspondence dated November 8, 2019,” read the response. “The Commissioner of Canada Elections is responsible for ensuring that the Canada Elections Act (the Act) is complied with and enforced. According to s. 69 of the Act, the closing day for nominations is the 21st day before polling day - in this case, September 30, 2019. After that time, any confirmed candidate is deemed to be running as set out in the nomination papers filed with Elections Canada. News reports indicate that the Conservative Party of Canada severed ties with Ms. Leung on October 4, 2019, four days after the close of nominations. As required by the Act, Ms. Leung’s candidacy for the Conservative Party of Canada could not legally be changed and her name was required to be shown as a candidate of the Conservative Party of Canada on the ballot. Any votes cast for her were required to be counted by Elections Canada as votes for the candidate of the Conservative Party of Canada in Burnaby North. Because she was the official candidate of the Conservative Party of Canada, she was entitled to advertise herself as such. Doing so was not illegal. In light of the above, we have reviewed the information you have provided and concluded that the circumstances as described do not appear to contravene any provisions of the Act.”

Meighan does not agree with the decision.

Regardless of any decision by Elections Canada, I allege that the candidate and her campaign team did not uphold the spirit of the Law, their fiduciary responsibility to the Electorate, the general Public, and the Conservative Party of Canada,” he told the NOW.

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