09/08/2013 05:15 EDT | Updated 09/08/2013 05:17 EDT

Naheed Nenshi, Ezra Levant Argue On Twitter Over Pembina Contract (TWEETS)

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi and Sun News Network's Ezra Levant got into a war of words on social media on Sunday.

It started with the mayor commenting on an opinion column Levant wrote titled 'Meet the mayor's scientists,' that accused Nenshi of giving $340,000 to "an anti-oilsands lobby group," the Pembina Institute.

On Friday, the environmental and research organization defended the contract meant to help the city develop its strategy on greenhouse gas emissions, Global News reports.

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation said it was inappropriate for Pembina to prepare reports due to its advocacy work, Global added.

The spat began Sunday when Norman Spector, a one-time chief of staff to former prime minister Brian Mulroney tweeted, "Has Levant found Nenshi’s Achilles' heel?"

Nenshi responded, "No. Let's keep in mind his 'anti-oil' group has Preston on the board, is funded by and consults for oil Co's. typical lazy Ezra."

The Sun News host then asked Nenshi a series of questions and the conversation between the old acquaintances got heated.

It took a turn for the worse when Nenshi asked Levant, "When did you stop beating your wife?"

It's a cliche used to expose "gotcha questions," Nenshi later explained.

Levant took the comment personally, saying he never beat his wife and that Nenshi was "vicious," "hyper-sensitive" and had a "filthy mouth."

"For context," said Nenshi, "I've known Levant since we were kids. We've travelled together, shared hotel rooms. He's exactly the same as he ever was."

Here's a look at more of the conversation. What do you think of the spat? Tell us in the comments below or on Twitter at HuffPost Alberta: