B.C. MP Marc Dalton seeks Conservative leadership with thinly veiled pitch to convoy supporters

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      The MP for Pitt Meadows–Maple Ridge is hoping to lead the Conservatives into the next federal election campaign.

      In announcing his leadership bid today, Marc Dalton promised a national inquiry into the COVID-19 pandemic, including "coercive measures" used to get people vaccinated.

      The 61-year-old former B.C. Liberal MLA also said that this inquiry would examine how much the government knew about vaccine injuries and vaccine-related deaths.

      These have been two hot-button issues for Canada's so-called freedom movement.

      In addition, Dalton pledged that the inquiry would delve into "how multimillion-dollar contracts got into the hands and pockets of Liberal buddies".

      On March 12, Dalton spoke at a rally in Maple Ridge reportedly organized by Action4Canada chapter leader Andrew Dodge. In the past, Dodge has repeated some of Russia's unproven allegations about Ukraine on his Facebook page, including a claim that the country "is the child sex trafficking hub in the world".

      One of the speakers at the March 12 rally was Action4Canada founder Tanya Gaw. The far-right group has a history of opposing unions, the UN, 5G towers, choice on abortion, and transgender and LGBT rights. It also called for the eradication of Islam. 

      After the pandemic was declared, Action4Canada jumped into the fray on vaccinations, enabling it to expand its appeal.

      On March 12, Gaw opened her speech thanking "God and God alone for the ground that I'm standing on". Then she claimed that the Trudeau family has been working for decades to "turn Canada into a Communist nation".

      "Senior Trudeau had a mission and his son said he's going to finish what his dad started," Gaw said. "All right, what do they have to do to destroy democracy in Canada? They have to destroy the church because our country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles inherited through our British Commonwealth."

      Gaw also insisted that Canada is not a multicultural nation. Rather, she maintained, it's a "bicultural nation with many cultures and we embrace that".

      Later in her speech, Gaw linked autism to vaccinations created by "pharmaceutical monsters". The links between vaccinations and autism have been repeatedly debunked.

      Dalton, a fluent French speaker of Métis heritage, has potential to attract support from the Christian right in the Conservative leadership race. And that could conceivably make him a kingmaker if he throws his support behind any of the supposed frontrunners should he falter.

      Last year, Dalton voted against an amendment to the Criminal Code of Canada that would have restricted conversion therapy. In addition, he voted in favour of a bill to criminalize sex-selective abortion.

      In 2009, the B.C. NDP released an email that Dalton had written in 1996 to a teacher, where he also demonstrated his socially conservative views.

      In the email, Dalton made the following comments about homosexuality:

      "I am not against homosexuals as people, but I do not support their lifestyle choices. I believe homosexuality is a moral issue. Most of us agree on many morals: respect, honesty, kindness. There are also many behaviours and acts that most of us would not condone: rape, robbery, assault, drunken driving," pedophilia, incest and so on," Dalton wrote.

      "There are other moral issues that large segments of our society do not see eye to eye: gambling, abortion, adultery, pornography. I believe that homosexuality fits in this category.”

      Dalton's comments were described as "disturbingly homophobic" by the NDP's Spencer Chandra Herbert.