Conservative group that called on Scheer to resign claims victory
OTTAWA -- The grassroots organization that called on Andrew Scheer to step down as Conservative leader says today is a "good day."
"For this particular organization, we’ve accomplished our objectives," Conservative Victory co-founder Sara MacIntyre told CTVNews.ca on Thursday.
Conservative Victory, which launched in late November, was founded by party insiders and former aides to prime minister Stephen Harper.
"We were solely dedicated to triggering a leadership election process, that’s happened, so we’ll be wrapping up and looking forward to seeing who throws their hat in the ring."
Her colleague Kory Teneycke said the group wouldn’t be putting forward a slate of leadership hopefuls – nor have they identified a frontrunner.
"Having an open competition around the party leadership will allow new voices, new approaches, and new perspectives to come to the fore and will yield a stronger party," he said.
Teneycke, who acted as Harper’s director of communications, has previously taken aim at Scheer for his stance on social issues like same-sex marriage and abortion.
While he didn’t comment specifically on Thursday about whether he thought Scheer’s values ultimately led to his decision to resign, he did say the next leader needs to be absolutely transparent about where they stand on these types of issues.
"He ran a campaign in which his primary point of comparison to the current prime minister is that he was not as advertised," said Teneycke.
MacIntyre said she would like to see a more dynamic, well-rounded candidate come forward in a leadership race, which she hopes is sooner than April. That’s when party membership will gather in Toronto for a convention.
"What I would like to see is someone who has some accomplishments in their own private life outside of politics, that would be a change of pace and someone who is able to do the groundwork."
Fellow co-founder Jeff Ballingall, who’s also the founder of social media groups Canada Proud and Ontario Proud, said he wants to see someone “forward-thinking” and who “believes in the power of digital.”
"Someone who’s willing to work hard and take the necessary steps to grow a bigger party and be reflective of Canada in 2020."
Through its campaign, the group accepted donations on its website. Teneycke wouldn’t disclose how much money the organization collected but said they received "many, many donations from every part of the country."
They’ve agreed to redistribute any unused funds to donators.