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Bill Kelly: Why Bernier’s People’s Party worries Conservatives

Click to play video: 'Bernier has not spoken to Conservative colleagues about joining new party' Bernier has not spoken to Conservative colleagues about joining new party
People's Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier said Friday he had not spoken to his former Conservative Party colleagues, saying he's focusing on the base and does not need the support of his former party – Sep 14, 2018

Andrew Scheer and the Conservative brass are saying what you might expect them to say, that Maxime Bernier‘s People’s Party of Canada poses no threat to them heading into next year’s election. But don’t kid yourself; they’re concerned.

Bernier’s extreme views on immigration and diversity and supply management were rejected by the Conservatives when they selected Scheer over Bernier. But they did so under the assumption that those who supported those radical views would still vote Conservative because they really had no other viable choice.

READ MORE: Maxime Bernier officially launches new conservative People’s Party

But Bernier’s People’s Party gives them another option and better reflects those extreme viewpoints.

No one expects Bernier’s party to win any seats, but if they can attract even a small percentage of the right-wing vote in key ridings, it would split the conservative vote and allow the Liberals to walk up the middle.

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WATCH: Bernier says new party will have full list of candidates in 2019 election

Click to play video: 'Bernier says new party will have full list of candidates in 2019 election' Bernier says new party will have full list of candidates in 2019 election
Bernier says new party will have full list of candidates in 2019 election – Sep 14, 2018

Don’t forget that splitting the right-wing vote between the Conservatives and the Reform Party back in the ’90s was a key factor in Jean Chretien’s consecutive majority governments.

That’s why Scheer and the Conservatives have good reason to be concerned.

History shows that when the conservative vote is split, the Liberals win and, after a rocky political year, Justin Trudeau is hoping that history repeats itself.

Bill Kelly is the host of the Bill Kelly Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML

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