UPDATE: Todd Beasley removed from UCP ballot ahead of nomination vote

By Matt Pouncy/Charles Lefebvre
July 15, 2018 - 4:19pm Updated: July 16, 2018 - 7:11pm

 

BROOKS, AB — A candidate for the United Conservative Party nomination in Brooks-Medicine Hat was asked by the party to withdraw from candidacy due to breaking party rules.

Todd Beasley, former UCP candidate for Brooks-Medicine Hat, announced in a Facebook post at 11:30 p.m. that he has removed himself from the ballot.

“I have been asked by the United Conservative Party to withdraw my name as contestant for the Party candidacy in the Brooks Medicine Hat riding. While I do not agree with this request, I respect the Party's right to approve or reject their potential candidates. My name will not appear on the upcoming ballot,” said Beasley in a Facebook post.

Beasley was overwhelmed with the encouragement and support he received from the riding, but makes no apologies for his strong opinion that he has on certain subjects.

“There is a perception in some quarters that certain published opinions could be construed as intolerant and offensive to some. Again, I make no apologies,” wrote Beasley. “My sense of right and wrong will not allow me to remain silent when my conscience demands otherwise.”

CHAT News has reached out, but hasn’t heard from Beasley for a comment.

Michaela Glasgo and Dinah Hiebert are the two remaining candidates seeking nomination to represent the UCP in the 2019 provincial election.

Jeff Lanigan, President of the Brooks-Medicine Hat constituency association, says the three candidates were vetted before the process started but over the course of the nomination there are rules and policies that the candidates are asked to follow that Beasley did not.

“The list of reasons were given to him in an official letter from the party saying here’s why we’ve asked you to step down,” said Lanigan. “So he would have the exact details, nobody else has that, but Todd and the party.”

Lanigan says the party won’t reveal the details but Beasley can if he wants to.

He says there’s two very good candidates remaining, and he hopes that the UCP members that will be voting on Monday and Tuesday respect that.

“You know this isn’t the party rigging an election or doing that. This is very professional and these candidates know there are rules and you need to act within those rules. Whether it’s two days before an election or two years after an election,” said Lanigan.

Beasley wrote in his post that the UCP should abandon the nomination vote to take some time with the decision. He believes the timeline of the vote isn’t necessary.

Voting begins tomorrow in Brooks from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Heritage Inn, and at the same time the following day in Medicine Hat at the Medicine Hat Real Estate Board.

The vote is only open to party members.

UPDATE 8:46 p.m.

The United Conservative Party has revealed details about the Facebook posts which resulted in Todd Beasley no longer being listed on the ballot.

Jeff Henwood, political operations director with the party, forwarded correspondence between Beasley and Janice Harrington, executive director with the United Conservatives, to CHAT News Today.

The letter, dated July 14, says Beasley was disqualified from the ballot for past social media comments regarding Islam. The posts were made in 2017, in response to an article about the Manchester concert bombing.

One comment reads “Islam/Muslims. i.e. Those who think a rational God would anoint a Dark Age Pedophile warlord as his prophet. Muslims. I.e Fools who are really worshipping Satan.”

A second comment reads “Islam is not a religion of peace. It’s cruel, revolting, racist, oppressive and has no legitimate basis…Muhammad was a 6th century rapist Pedophile. Murdering, bigamist, sadistic Warlord posing as a holy man.”

Beasley’s letter claims he disclosed everything to Jeff Henwood he thought would be considered contentious.

The party says they strongly refute the claim, claiming Beasley disclosed the “general subject matter” of the posts, but not the posts themselves.

“While you may have forgotten the specifics of the posts at the time, we reject your arguments that these inflammatory comments are somehow part of a constructive critique of a major world religion,” the letter reads. “In fact, in your most recent comments you recommit to the comments, stating, ‘I stand by these comments.’”

The full correspondance can be read below.

 

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