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Alberta MP apologizes for using middle finger during question period

Click to play video 'Conservative MP apologizes after sticking up middle finger during question period' Conservative MP apologizes after sticking up middle finger during question period
Conservative MP for Red Deer, Alberta Blaine Calkins apologized after sticking up the middle finger during Friday’s question period while participating remotely after a Liberal MP requested an apology. The house speaker said he will be reviewing the session’s record and get back to the house if any further action is necessary – Oct 23, 2020

An MP from central Alberta is apologizing for using his middle finger during question period on Friday.

Blaine Calkins, the Conservative MP for Red Deer-Lacombe, was participating in QP remotely. He was talking about the effect of Liberal policies on things like oil extraction in the province and said the federal government hasn’t done anything for farmers and producers in a time of need.

“Mr. Speaker, why doesn’t the prime minister just show the West what he truly thinks of us, just like his father did?” he asked as he made a gesture with his right middle finger up.

Read more: Student asks Justin Trudeau why his father gave western Canada ‘the middle finger’

A short time later, the Liberal MP for Longueuil-Charles-LeMoyne, Sherry Romanado, requested an apology.

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While Calkins said it was not uncommon for people to be able to wave or use hand gestures in the House of Commons, he did apologize.

“If there is a particular hand gesture that I have used that has been offensive to someone then I unreservedly withdraw that gesture.”

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Western frustration fuels Wexit separatist movement – Dec 9, 2019

While the speaker was explaining the order of decorum is expected to be upheld regardless of whether the MPs are in the house or online, MP of Saanich-Gulf Islands Elizabeth May called Calkins’ apology a “non-apology.”

“I took offence. I think a lot of us took offence. So if someone took offence — withdrawing the gesture, I think that that doesn’t qualify as an actual apology.”

When the speaker went back to Calkin to see if he had a further apology, Calkins repeated “I unreservedly withdraw the gesture.”

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Read more: In letter to Trudeau, Kenney says rejection of Teck Frontier project could be ‘boiling point’ for western alienation

This wasn’t the first time someone has suggested a Trudeau has given the middle finger to Western Canada.

While participating in a town hall in Winnipeg in January 2017, Justin Trudeau was caught off guard by a student’s question.

“Why did your dad give everyone in western Canada the middle finger?” the student asked.

Rather than delve into Pierre Trudeau‘s alleged role in fostering western alienation in Canada, Justin Trudeau defended his father for doing the best he could.

Click to play video 'Young student asks PM Justin Trudeau why his father gave ‘western Canada the middle finger?’' Young student asks PM Justin Trudeau why his father gave ‘western Canada the middle finger?’
Young student asks PM Justin Trudeau why his father gave ‘western Canada the middle finger?’ – Jan 26, 2017