Pickering, Ontario MP roasted over ‘Boo hoo” comments on foreign interference

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Published June 6, 2024 at 1:33 pm

Parliament Hill

A Pickering MP’s response of “Boo hoo, get over it” to a demand for the release of names cited in a cross-party security report on foreign interference has drawn the ire of Canadians on social media channels.

Pickering-Uxbridge MP Jennifer O’Connell, who sits on the Standing Committee on Public Safety and is the Minister’s Parliamentary Secretary, made the comments in the House of Commons after the Conservatives called for the release of names cited in the report released Monday by the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians, a group of MPs and senators with top security clearances, that alleges some unnamed parliamentarians collaborated with foreign governments.

O’Connell called a tweet from an Ottawa reporter calling her out for her comments a “mischaracterization.”

“I was responding to frustrated Conservative MPs complaining with points of order because their juvenile, theatrical attempts to generate dishonest social media clips failed spectacularly.”

Pickering-Uxbridge MP Jennifer O’Connell

The response from the public, however, was less than positive:

“Arrogance and entitlement,” was one retort, while another questioned O’Connell’s choice of tone. “Getting Grade 10 sassy about possible traitors to Canada seems just a little unserious.” A third comment made implications about who is guilty of political interference, a theme that devolved into unfounded accusations and assumptions and partisan politics further down the thread.

“Why wouldn’t any honest politician want to know the names?”

There’s the rub, of course, as MPs and Senators who may have conspired with foreign interests can not be named until they have been investigated and proof is provided.

It’s possible guilty parliamentarians would come from both sides of the House, and despite the rhetoric expressed on the floor, Conservative MPs aren’t talking publicly about the issue either, and federal leader Pierre Poilievre is still refusing to undergo the security clearance vetting process.

The report was compiled after committee members reviewed information and intelligence gathered by ten federal bodies, including the RCMP, CSIS, the Department of Justice and Elections Canada.

The reports cites China and India as the “most active perpetrators” in the alleged  affair.

 

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