Christy Somos Writer
@C_Somos Contact
TORONTO — Five of Canada’s political parties will be represented at September’s federal election debates, however the People’s Party of Canada (PPC) Leader Maxime Bernier will not be taking part, after the PPC fell short of the four per cent threshold of public polling needed to qualify.
The Leaders’ Debates Commission announced its decision Saturday in a news release.
The participation criteria for federal election debates is set by the Leaders’ Debates Commission and this election parties must meet at minimum one of the three requirements:
The Liberals, Conservatives, NDP, Bloc and Greens have all met the criteria, and were invited to participate in the debates in letters sent August 16.
The NDP and Green parties have sent acceptance letters, which are posted on the Commission’s website.
Bernier scraped by to enter the 2019 federal election debate after Commissioner David Johnston reversed a preliminary ruling disqualifying the PPC for not meeting the then-criteria.
Bernier, who is no stranger to controversy, attended Tuesday’s “Unmask the Children Rally” in Etobicoke, Ont., and said his campaign hopes to tap into Canadian’s anger over major issues such as the COVID-19 pandemic response and immigration.
Billboards for the PPC encapsulate that core campaign messaging with the slogan “the other options suck.”
The French-language debate is scheduled for Sept. 8, from 8 to 10 p.m. EDT and the official English leaders’ debate is scheduled for Sept. 9 from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. EDT at the Canadian Museum of History.
The debates will be produced by a coalition of media outlets, known as the Debate Broadcast Group: CTV News, CBC News, APTN News, Global News, Radio-Canada, L’actualite, Les coops de l’information, Le Devoir, Noovo and La Presse.
Justin Trudeau, Erin O’Toole, Yves-François Blanchet, Jagmeet Singh, Annamie Paul vertical photos. Election 2021
People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier launches his campaign during a press conference at a hotel in Saint-Georges, Que., Friday, Aug. 20, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot)
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