An NDP candidate whose controversial comments about Israel and Canada were featured on a Conservative attack website has resigned.
On Monday, NDP senior campaign adviser Brad Lavigne confirmed Morgan Wheeldon had been given the boot:
"Our position on the conflict in the Middle East is clear, as Tom Mulcair expressed clearly in the debate. Mr. Wheeldon's comments are not in line with that policy and he is no longer our candidate. We were made aware of some information that had not previously been disclosed. When we approached Mr. Wheeldon with this information he submitted his resignation."
The Huffington Post Canada has learned that Morgan Wheeldon, who was set to run for the NDP in the Nova Scotia riding of Kings–Hants, handed his resignation on Sunday after the party asked him to resign or be fired. His name has vanished from the national party’s website and his own website has been stripped of its content.
Judy Swift, the riding president, told HuffPost: "We don’t have any comment on that right now."
Wheeldon’s campaign manager, Ramona Jennex, said he had offered his resignation, but she declined to elaborate.
"What I do know so far is that there has been an issue that has been brought forward, and Morgan is in the process now of making a decision on which way the campaign will go," she said.
Wheeldon is featured on a Conservative Party of Canada website calling Israel’s action against Palestinians a war crime — comments he made on a Facebook post in August 2014.
"One could argue that Israel’s intention was always to ethnically cleanse the region — there are direct quotations proving this to be the case. Guess we just sweep that under the rug. A minority of Palestinians are bombing buses in response to what appears to be a calculated effort to commit a war crime," Wheeldon wrote.
The comment, since deleted, was made in the context of a discussion about controversial British MP George Galloway being physically attacked in London, allegedly for his anti-Israeli views.
“I don't agree with everything Galloway says, but the muted reaction to his beating demonstrates a double-standard in the West. If a Palestinian beat up a conservative politician with the opposite stance, the reaction would be immense,” he wrote.
Wheeldon is also quoted on the Conservative site calling Canada "a country of self-interest and cheap outs" in a September 2011 Facebook post. In his post, Wheeldon wrote that Canada used to be known as a compassionate country.
“They tried to kick out an autistic Korean kid/family not long ago because treatment was too expensive,” he said, before making the controversial comment.
Wheeldon told HuffPost he had "no comment at this time."
The NDP headquarters in Ottawa did not return requests for comment.
Another NDP candidate from Quebec, Hans Marotte, a former well-known separatist, has also come under fire for comments he made supporting the first Palestinian intifada (uprising). The NDP declined to say whether leader Thomas Mulcair agreed with the comment but said Marotte believes in a two-state solution that includes a secure state for Israelis along a viable state for Palestinians.
Also on HuffPost