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COLUMN: Liberals out of touch on MAID, firearms ban

Foothills MP John Barlow says Justin Trudeau's Liberals must be stopped before they hurt Canadians any more than they already have.
John Barlow 0017
Foothills MP John Barlow

As the sun sets on 2022 and the House of Commons returns for the winter session, I will be focused on shining a light on a number of important issues for folks in Foothills. 

Two important issues which must be addressed are the Liberals’ damaging plans to expand access to medical assistance in dying (MAID) and a proposed ban on hunting rifles and shotguns. 

Conservatives have spoken passionately in opposition to the flawed MAID legislation since the beginning. I voted against MAID after hosting numerous town halls in the riding due to concerns with a lack of safeguards ensuring assisted dying could not be expanded. 

My concerns have proven true as in 2021, the Liberals expanded accessibility to those with mental illness and minors. We cannot stand by and watch this happen, and we have not. Many MPs heard the heartbreaking stories of veterans improperly being offered assisted death by Veterans Affairs Canada employees or users of food banks seeking assisted death. 

In too many cases, vulnerable Canadians are being offered assisted death instead of the supports they want and need from the system. 

In a small win, Conservative pressure has led to the Liberals working to delay this reckless expansion for now. However, we understand how important it is to stay focused, work with advocates in the mental health and disability communities who oppose this expansion and keep the pressure on this Liberal government. 

The well-being of far too many Canadians depends on it. 

The Liberals also want to target law-abiding firearms owners in their plan to ban hunting rifles. No reasonable Canadian believes law-abiding firearms owners and hunters are the problem when it comes to escalating violent crime. 

I cannot stand by while Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government puts forward legislation to criminalize thousands of Canadians for no justified reason. I know hunting is an important activity for many Albertans, farmers and Indigenous people to ensure their own safety, the safety of their animals and as an important source of food. 

Yet Trudeau wants to criminalize law-abiding citizens and he is misleading Canadians about doing it, while allowing criminals to roam free in our communities with new lackadaisical bail laws. I and other Conservatives are committed to speaking out against the Liberal hunting rifle ban, protecting the safety of all Canadians with effective and common-sense solutions to reducing gun violence and strengthening our bail and criminal justice system. 

This year, more than ever, Trudeau and his out-of-touch Liberals must be stopped before they hurt Canadians any more than they already have. Canada is in the midst of a healthcare crisis with antibiotic shortages, an affordability and food security crisis, disastrous passport processing delays, chaos at airports, a two-million-person immigration backlog and more. 

This Liberal government is broken and can’t fulfil even its most basic functions. That is why I remain committed to putting my best foot forward for Foothills and all Canadians.