Conservative MP Maxime Bernier accused Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday of pushing a “radical multiculturalism” agenda with his continued support for “more diversity.”
Bernier waded into an ongoing immigration debate by suggesting advocacy for a society that’s “infinitely diverse” will endanger Canada’s core identity.
The comments pick up on statements Bernier made Sunday, acknowledging that Canada is a “huge and diverse” country. He criticized remarks Trudeau said in Toronto on Friday at the opening of the Taste of Danforth street festival — near the site where a gunman opened fire on diners last month, killing two and injuring 13 people.
Trudeau told the crowd that resilience comes from “different perspectives, different backgrounds, different cultures coming together and celebrating the same things.” Differences are a source of strength and “never a source of weakness,” he said.
“Having people live among us who reject basic Western values such as freedom, equality, tolerance and openness doesn’t make us strong,” Bernier tweeted, adding that those who do not integrate and adapt Canadian values “don’t make our society strong.”
Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has not commented on Bernier’s tweets as of publication.
Liberals promptly weighed in on Bernier’s tweets. Toronto MP Adam Vaughan called the statements “racist.” Whitby MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes called Bernier’s remarks “toxic and damaging.”
The Liberals later released a fundraising message critical of the Conservatives and called on supporters to donate to “ensure that positive politics wins the day.”
“Once again they’re showing that they are entirely out of touch with Canadians and this country’s commitment to inclusion,” it read.