Advertisement

Does Canada’s Conservative Party need a female leader?

Click to play video: 'Conservatives search for new leader' Conservatives search for new leader
WATCH ABOVE: The federal conservatives are looking for a new leader to replace former Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Yet, as Global's Raquel Fletcher reports, some in the party say the best person for the job is actually interim, Rona Ambrose – Jan 27, 2017

The Conservative Party of Canada is searching for a new leader to replace former Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Party members have 14 candidates to choose from, but some argue the best person for the job is actually interim leader Rona Ambrose.

“I look forward to seeing the race heat up,” said Ambrose, who cannot run for the top job.

Some party members say she has confidence as interim leader.

READ MORE: Conservative Party candidates learning French to gain support in Quebec

On Friday, during the party caucus in Quebec City, Ambrose took on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for charging for events.

“He is the most powerful person in Canada. He cannot charge people to come to an event – $1,500 – and talk about government business,” she said during Friday’s press conference.

Story continues below advertisement

Ambrose will be leader until the end of May, when the party will elect one of its 14 candidates.

READ MORE: Exclusive: Kevin O’Leary Conservatives could pose threat to Justin Trudeau Liberals in 2019: Ipsos poll

Just two of the candidates are female.

On Thursday, candidate and TV businessman Kevin O’Leary made offensive comments about a former Dragon’s Den colleague, Arlene Dickinson.

“She was never able to separate her emotions from her investments and that’s why she did so poorly on that show,” O’Leary said.

Ambrose is unfazed about him winning the leadership.

“The Conservative Party has always had a very long history of strong women in the party and we’ll continue to have those same women active in the party,” she said.

Ambrose said she hopes she’s been a positive example for women, but she doesn’t think she offers anything that can’t be found in one of the other 14 candidates.

Some in the party disagree.

“We have a great lesson in 2015, who didn’t vote for us? Women didn’t vote for us, so obviously we need to communicate with women,” said conservative leadership candidate Lisa Raitt.

Story continues below advertisement

READ MORE: Maxime Bernier under fire at Conservative French-language debate

Raitt said party members should look for the same qualities Ambrose possesses in their next leader.

“That’s why Rona’s so successful, because her tone is right and she is compassionate and she’s worked hard on issues like that,” she said.

“I hope membership sees that that has been a success.”

Sponsored content