Prime Minister Justin Trudeau kicked a number of hecklers out of his town hall in Nanaimo on Friday after they wouldn’t “respect anyone in this room.”
While the specific hecklers were hard to hear, many people in the audience were voicing concerns over Trudeau’s action or lack thereof on environmental issues like the Kinder Morgan pipeline and fish farm regulations.
First, as Trudeau was heckled by some members of his audience at Vancouver Island University, a First Nation chief stood up and asked for people to have a conversation based on “respect and listening.”
“We’d love to carry on this discussion, and if we can’t carry on we’d love people to please excuse themselves and let us carry on this discussion,” he said.
WATCH: Heckler removed at B.C. Trudeau town hall as chief asks for calm and respect
Then, as Wyse spoke, police approached a man in the audience and escorted him out.
But the heckling didn’t stop.
One protester later stood up and, yelling, she said to Trudeau, “why won’t you talk with us, why won’t you engage with us.”
Trudeau responded, “I am trying to engage with you, I am trying to speak with you, I’m trying to answer a question from someone who asked me a question that is extremely important to her.
“I’m not able to answer her question that she asked of the prime minister because you think your voice is more important than her ability to listen,” he said to loud applause and cheers.
He then asked her to show some respect for people in the room.
Then he said, to more cheers and applause, “You don’t respect anyone in this room? Then I’m going to have to ask you to leave this room.
“Usually it’s not that easy, usually it’s harder to get them to admit they don’t respect anyone in this room.”
But the heckler didn’t leave, and she was soon joined by another who stood with her in the audience.
“Oh come on, come on. Really? Really? OK, this is it,” Trudeau said.
Police later escorted both hecklers out of the room.
“Thank you and I apologize for the behaviour of our fellow citizens,” Trudeau said.
The prime minister’s Nanaimo event was the sixth and last stop on this year’s town hall tour.
It ended with a crowd chanting “stop Kinder Morgan” as Trudeau left.