A former Newfoundland cabinet minister says his son’s bid to run for the federal Conservatives was turfed over a Shakespearean parody about Stephen Harper’s woes.
John Crosbie said his son Ches, a prominent Newfoundland personal injury lawyer, was told by Conservative brass he wasn't the type of candidate the party is seeking for the upcoming fall election.
“The excuse they gave him — and it’s ridiculous — [is] that a month or two ago at the lawyer meeting … they were having a theatrical performance to raise money for the lawyers or their association, [and] he had performed or made a joke about something to do with Mike Duffy and the government,” the senior Crosbie told CBC News.
The former Newfoundland and Labrador lieutenant-governor also accused Conservative Senator David Wells of having a hand in killing his son's candidacy.
“This kind of trickery and knavery is not [the] traditional way that members of one party should deal with other members,” Crosbie told the broadcaster. “This is despicable.”
Wells denies he had anything to do with the outcome of Crosbie’s nomination bid.
Conservative party communications director Cory Hann refused to comment on the matter, telling The Huffington Post Canada the issue is an “internal party matter.”
Crosbie, who is currently on vacation in the U.K. with his family, issued a statement on Wednesday confirming his nomination bid had been quashed by “the decision-makers at party headquarters in Ottawa.”
He added he was told he “wasn’t the type of candidate [the party] wanted.”
“While I am disappointed and disagree with the party’s decision, I respect that is their right to make it,” Crosbie said.
The Shakespeare-inspired skit that may have landed Crosbie in hot water was performed April 25. The “Called to the Bard” show brought together St. John’s lawyers and the Perchance Theatre troupe for a evening of “Shakespeare’s best appeals — legal, love and otherwise,” according to an event description.
Tickets were sold at $150 per person, and proceeds went to charity.
A video clip captured by St. John’s lawyer Melissa Royle shows Crosbie wearing a kilt and swinging a fake sword, making playful barbs at the prime minister and the Mike Duffy scandal.
“Why should I play the political fool and die on my mine own sword while Nigel Wright and MacDuffy live, the gashes look better upon them,” Crosbie is heard saying in the MacBeth parody.
“I shall not yield to kiss the ground beneath young Trudeau’s feet and bear the curse of Danny Williams.”
Listen to audio of the skit here:
Crosbie states he will not be appealing the party’s decision to the national council.
He announced his candidacy for the riding of Avalon in December.
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