Doug Ford: Reinstate Belinda Karahalios back into the Conservative Caucus!
Please help us fight against Premier Doug Ford’s act of political suppression in ousting MPP Belinda Karahalios from the Progrssive Conservative caucus for voting against the authoritarian Bill 195. It is essential that politicians are free to represent their constituents, not the whims of their party’s leader.
On July 21st, Ontario Member of Provincial Belinda Karahalios was kicked out of the Progressive Conservative Party caucus by Premier Doug Ford after voting against her party on Bill 195.
Bill 195 aims to make it so that Doug Ford can end Ontario’s state of emergency, but keep many of the emergency powers he had during it, such as the closing of businesses, managing workforces, and prohibiting public gatherings. Doug Ford and one of his Cabinet Ministers can extend these orders one month at a time up until 2022 without needing a vote from the legislature. Bill 195 has been deemed an anti-democratic power-grab by the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, the Ontario Federation of Labour, and the Ontario Nurses’ Association.
Belinda Karahalios voted against Bill 195 because it takes away the legislature's ability to hold the government to account for its use of emergency powers. Enormous power being centralized without accountability is not only a violation of conservative values, but basic democratic values. It is therefore wrong that a Conservative politician is punished for standing up for these values instead of merely acting in the interest of her Party Leader.
This cannot be tolerated. A politician’s job is to represent her constituents. We use our politicians as a means to hold our government to account, regardless of which party is leading at any time. If politicians are made to feel unable to represent the values of their constituents, our ability to hold our government to account is severely compromised.
As Leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario, Doug Ford can reinstate MPP Belinda Karahalios if he sees that it is a wise move to make as the Party Leader. This is why we must send him a message that Canadians find it essential that their elected officials can vote freely according to their conscience. He assured his party when he won the leadership that he’d allow caucus members to vote with their conscience on policy matters. Through this petition, we can hold him to this commitment to do whatever is in his power to ensure that our politicians can fully represent us!
MPP Belinda Karahalios booted from PC caucus (CBC) https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/kitchener-waterloo/belinda-karahalios-cambridge-progressive-conservative-1.5658084
Ontario Federation of Labour opposes Bill 195 https://financialpost.com/pmn/press-releases-pmn/globe-newswire-releases/ford-is-using-the-health-emergency-to-assault-democracy-with-bill-195-says-ofl
Ontario Nurses’ Association opposes Bill 195 https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/it-s-a-dark-day-for-ontario-nurses-and-health-care-professionals-as-ford-government-passes-bills-195-197-855873041.html
Doug Ford promised free votes for caucus members https://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/five-things-to-know-about-new-ontario-tory-leader-doug-ford-1.3838007