It looks like Michael Ignatieff was a pretty good tourist.
Former Conservative cabinet minister Jason Kenney praised the “brilliant” scholar on Twitter and congratulated him for receiving the Order of Canada.
During the 2011 federal election, Kenney’s party constantly attacked the former Liberal leader for spending 30 years outside the country and then returning to run for politics.
Congratulations to @M_Ignatieff and all others receiving the Order of Canada today. A much-deserved recognition of a brilliant Canadian.
— Jason Kenney 🎄 (@jkenney) December 30, 2016
The “Michael Ignatieff: Just Visiting” ads were effective — Ignatieff resigned after leading the Liberal Party to its worst showing in Canadian history.
Even during the 2015 election, after Justin Trudeau had taken over the party, the Conservatives couldn’t help themselves. They continued to use Ignatieff’s image and words in attack ads.
Their words apparently stuck. Most of the replies to Kenney’s tweet show shock that someone who was “just visiting” Canada could be awarded the country’s highest honour … and congratulated for it by a Conservative politician.
— Gordonrox24 (@gordonrox24) December 30, 2016
— Mark Michie (@MichieQrtrHrses) December 30, 2016
— Diane Dallas (@DianeDallas10) December 31, 2016
@jkenney are you joking?
— Keith Andres (@Keith_Andone) December 31, 2016
“Are you joking?” one reply reads. “Really?” says another. “The man lived most of his life in the USA & thought he could swoop in & b appointed leader. Ridiculous. [sic]”
Kenney’s only other tweet to Ignatieff, sent in 2010, accuses him of threatening Canadians with jail time in order to extract personal information. Ignatieff supported the census.
@M_Ignatieff By threatening citizens with fines and jail time to extract personal information?
— Jason Kenney 🎄 (@jkenney) July 31, 2010
No longer a federal politician, Kenney is in Alberta attempting to unite the province's right wing. He hopes to lead the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta in a merger with the Wildrose Party.