The social media war of words is heating up in Canada’s federal election, and Tuesday saw a well-known comedian take issue with a misleading meme posted by a federal party.
The incident saw CBC personality Rick Mercer take aim at a Facebook post by the Burnaby North Seymour Conservative Riding Association.
The post in question saw an old quote by Mercer, which encouraged young people to vote, misleadingly added to an image along with the message “Vote Conservative.”
“If you’re between the age of 18 and 25 and you want to scare the hell out of the people that run this country, this time around do the unexpected. Take 20 minutes out of your day and do what young people all around the world are dying to do,” reads the quote.
The quote is real, but was actually part of a non-partisan “rant” by Mercer ahead of the 2011 election. It had previously been turned into a meme and widely circulated in almost the exact same form, except it closed with “vote,” rather than “Vote Conservative.”
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On Monday, a social media user posted the meme to Twitter, tagging Mercer and asking him if it was accurate.
Mercer responded by addressing a tweet of his own to Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer.
“Your candidate in Burnaby North Seymour is distributing a Meme on social media with my face and the words ‘Vote Conservative’ indicating it is a quote from me. Not true. All fake. Please Stop,” wrote Mercer.
He followed it up with a second tweet saying, “Not real. Just a straight up fake by the candidate I guess.”
In an email, a Conservative Party spokesperson said the post was shared by the riding association, and not a local candidate or the campaign team.
“The post has been deleted. The individual who shared it is not involved on the local campaign,” said the party.
Global News has requested comment from the Burnaby North Seymour Riding Association.