Erin O’Toole and Conservatives’ Silence on Grace Life is Deafening

Written By Wyatt Claypool, Posted on April 9, 2021

Despite the fencing off of Grace Life Church becoming an international story, and one of the clearest examples of the government overstepping its role of enforcing public health measures, the Conservative Party under the leadership of Erin O’Toole has remained absolutely silent.

Not only has all the main CPC social media pages and Erin O’Toole’s pages not sounded off about the Alberta Health Service (AHS) official going overboard on enforcing health measures on a church with no cases of COVID-19 or variants connected to it, but even Conservative MPs from Alberta have not spoken a word about the massive civil liberties issue.

The Conservatives don’t even have to fully endorse the actions of Grace Life Church in order to seize onto the golden opportunity to simply condemn a church being made an example of by AHS and the RCMP far beyond what the law would require the punishment to be for violating provincial restrictions, whether you agree with them or not.

It seems likely that two different things could be at play here for why the Conservatives are refusing to advocate against these overbearing restrictions in Alberta and elsewhere.

  1. Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, although unpopular, is still an Erin O’Toole ally so regardless of what Kenney does O’Toole is unable to criticize anything he does.

  2. Erin O’Toole actually agrees with what the Alberta government is doing, which is in line with his harsh “war footing” stance on lockdowns from the 2020 CPC leadership race.

CPC MPs are likely barred from saying anything about the situation, potentially facing similar threats of expulsion from the party caucus as Kenney levied against his UCP caucus in Alberta if any UCP MLA broke a public health restriction.

The situation with Grace Life Church gives the lie to the notion that any of the current CPC MPs are truly against the lockdowns in a principled manner. Michelle Rempel MP for Calgary Nose Hill was praised for, more than a year after lockdowns were put in place across Canada, demanding that Justin Trudeau’s federal Liberal government create a plan for reopening the country, but all of a sudden when Kenney is enforcing lockdown rules in a clearly draconian way Rempel is MIA. 

(Photo from Terrance Standard)

(Photo from Terrance Standard)

Although it has never been a shock that Rempel will stand for a Conservative position when it is easy and then be nowhere to be seen when the smallest bit of controversy rears its head. No doubt MPs like Rempel would argue that Grace Life Church is a provincial matter and they will refuse to comment any further.

Currently, the only Member of Parliament actually advocating for the lockdowns to be severely eased or ended is Derek Sloan who Erin O’Toole kicked out of the CPC caucus back in January.  Sloan actually made his way out to Alberta to meet with Grace Life pastor James Coates to support his position that the lockdown measures being placed on his church are not justifiable.

In hindsight, it makes sense that the only MP openly criticizing lockdown measures the CPC at the time was the one removed from the caucus on trumped-up charges

Considering that a large portion of Canadians is getting fed up with the endless and strict lockdown regimes across Canada it would be an obvious move to at the very least support easing restrictions right now and mirroring policies that helped reduced the spread of infections in other areas of the world like Taiwan, Sweden, Texas, and Florida. Doing so would be an easy way for the CPC and O’Toole to pick back up much of their lost support over the past several months.

Around 40 percent of Canadians do not support the strictest measures proposed and implemented around Canada, and that is results from polls often worded in such a way to imply lockdowns measures are reasonable and effective, despite evidence they have little effect.

So right now Canadians who are even remotely displeased with the way lockdowns, and border closures have been implemented in Canada essentially only have MP Sloan to rely on to voice their reasonable opposition to the current lockdown culture in Canadian politics, because the Conservatives definitely aren’t saying much at all on the issue.

Wyatt Claypool

Wyatt is a student at Mount Royal University, where he is the president of its Campus Conservative club. In his writing, he focuses on covering provincial and federal politics, firearms regulation, and the energy sector. Wyatt has also previously written for The Post Millennial.

6 responses to “Erin O’Toole and Conservatives’ Silence on Grace Life is Deafening”

  1. Me says:

    Criminal code of Canada section 176 – it is illegal trespassing church property by police even during the war or pandemic or any emergency!

  2. Weyland Yutani says:

    Even if O’Toole and Kenney reversed course on this, it’s too late. They’ve shown themselves to be anything but conservative.

    The only conservative party is the PPC. Since the media won’t give them any time, or dismisses them as extremists, they won’t get anywhere.

    And that will lead directly to the Maverick Party and Western Separation.

    Bring it on- can’t happen soon enough.

  3. Beth says:

    The government is all in on the New world order plan to take the whole world into a communist regime.
    They are the puppets being used and they think that they will be safe at the end of this satanic plan???
    Not a chance in hell

  4. Jim Parrett says:

    QAnon thought remains big in conservative/right-wing world. Liberals thank you for your efforts. The polls thank you.

  5. Shannon says:

    God bless GraceLife church and God bless Derek Sloan!

  6. Janet Sauve says:

    Derek Sloan and other known protesters should not be allowed to use ICU’s if they catch COVID, because those of us who haven’t even seen our families (because they were trying to protect our health care workers and hospitals) might need those beds. The point has arrived where doctors may have to decide who will probably die if they can’t have ICU care. There was an old game called "Truth and Consequences". Protesters and resisters should be the ones to have the consequences – not the people who complied with orders to protect our health care.