Legacy Media In Ontario Create Arbitrary Debate Rules To Block New Blue Party From Participating

Written By Wyatt Claypool, Posted on May 13, 2022

It is typically quite difficult to get media coverage as a new outsider party in Canadian politics due to niche appeal early on, but despite the New Blue Party of Ontario only being a bit more than a year old it is polling similarly to the Green Party, has a popular MPP running for reelection, and has a full slate of candidates contesting the 2022 provincial election. 

Although one would assume a party that is polling up to 5 percent (in polls they are included in) and “Other” polling indicating New Blue has strength in Southwest and Southern Ontario, the legacy media does not think they are worth hearing from at the leaders’ debates.

In a debate being produced by a broadcast partnership between CBC, CHCH, CITYTV, CPAC, CTV, Global, and TVO, the rules feel strategically set to block new parties from gaining momentum. The only metric that allowed a party leader to be included in the debate was having an MPP elected under the party banner before the current election.

This means that despite New Blue and the Greens polling similarly and both having full slates of candidates, Green Party leader and MPP Mike Schreiner is included in the debate but New Blue Party leader Jim Karahalios is not. 

New Blue Party leader Jim Karahalios (MPP nominee for Kitchener-Conestoga)

This is a rule so misguided it would have blocked the Wildrose Party in Alberta from participating in debates in 2008, and the Saskatchewan Party from participating in the 1999 provincial election debates. 

One may argue that the Green Party in Ontario was also snubbed during leaders’ debates during previous provincial elections until Mike Schreiner got elected in Guelph so it’s okay for the same thing to happen to New Blue. The issue is that logic is that it enables the unfair treatment that arbitrarily held back the Green Party. 

It is also noteworthy that in Global News’ coverage of the upcoming debate and Jim Karahalios not being included, they falsely claimed MPP Belinda Karahalios “crossed the floor” from the PCs when she was actually kicked out for voting against Bill 195 (“Reopening” Ontario Act). It demonstrates the level of disregard many in the legacy media have for political outsiders trying to represent the underrepresented. 

The function of a debate during an election should be to allow the leaders of parties that represent significant portions of the population to speak to voters. The way the legacy media is conducting debates appears to be geared towards propping up the PCs, Liberals, and NDP and making Ontarians believe they don’t have any other competitive choices. 


Below is a screenshot of the “Other” polling from the most recent Mainstreet poll showing there being a lot of “Other” voters in Sothwestern and Southern Ontario where New Blue MPP Belinda Karahalios and New Blue leader Jim Karahalios are running.

Note: Although Northern Ontario polling is also high for “Other” which is a more typical region for higher polling for third parties. Southwestern and Southern Ontario used to poll very low for the “Other” option before the New Blue Party was officially registered.

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.

2 responses to “Legacy Media In Ontario Create Arbitrary Debate Rules To Block New Blue Party From Participating”

  1. Bryan Dale says:

    I didn’t bother watching the debate. I’m trying to decide between New Blue and Ontario Party so the debate among the radical left parties was irrelevant.

  2. Laurie says:

    Like Bryan, I didn’t watch the morons chastising each other. I haven’t watched a debate in years because they spend to much time slinging shit at each other instead of telling us what their party will do. Of course, we know that the party won’t do a damn thing they promised anyway, so the whole thing isjust a blatant theatrical production of which I will not be part of….