05/18/2016 10:36 EDT | Updated 05/18/2016 10:59 EDT

Rona Ambrose Says Trudeau Should Be 'Ashamed' Over Incident In House

Another veteran Tory says Harper would have faced calls to resign if he did something similar.

Interim Conservative Leader Rona Ambrose says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau should be "ashamed" of his actions ahead of a vote in the House of Commons Wednesday.

The official Opposition leader released a statement to media in response to a heated melee in the House hours earlier.

Conservative Interim Leader Rona Ambrose talks with media in Ottawa on May 11, 2016. (Photo: Matthew Usherwood/The Canadian Press)

Trudeau grabbed Tory whip Gord Brown by the arm and led him through a group of NDP MPs who, he later charged, were delaying a vote. In the process, he made contact with NDP MP Ruth Ellen Brosseau, who later said she was elbowed by the prime minister.

The episode culminated in a skirmish with NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair, who twice called Trudeau "pathetic."

Trudeau later apologized to Brosseau — who missed the vote — and the House for his behaviour.

Ambrose, evidently, was unmoved. In her release, she called Trudeau’s actions "shocking" and said it showed a "complete lack of respect" for Parliament.

"In my nearly twelve years as a Member of Parliament, I have never seen a fellow member — let alone a Prime Minister — act as disrespectfully and recklessly towards his colleagues, or toward Parliament, as I did this evening," she said.

The Tory leader charged that Trudeau’s "clear intent" was to intimidate fellow MPs physically.

"His actions resulted in my NDP colleague Ruth Ellen Brosseau being shoved into a desk," Ambrose said. "She was clearly shaken up.


"No one should ever have to deal with this kind of behaviour in any workplace. The fact that it's the Prime Minister of Canada is embarrassing. He should be ashamed of his actions."

Ambrose ended her statement by noting how Liberals have curtailed debate on legislation and seek to change how the opposition will hold them to account.

'If Stephen Harper had ever...'

While many MPs took to Twitter to comment on the bizarre turn of events, former cabinet minister and possible Conservative leadership candidate Jason Kenney sparked chatter online by saying that if Stephen Harper ever "physically bullied MPs," he would face calls to step down.

Kenney called Trudeau’s "increasingly dictatorial conduct" unprecedented.

And he worked in a dig at one of the PM’s former jobs.

Harper, meanwhile, was in the House to witness the action unfold.

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