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Tony Clement says well-placed sources have informed him that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will announce a ban on legal firearms at a women’s conference this June in Vancouver.
“I am told on good authority that the prime minister has a secret plan to ban legal firearms. Apparently, this secret plan is to be executed by cabinet directive with no debate in parliament,” the independent MP for Parry Sound–Muskoka told the House of Commons at the close of Thursday’s question period.
“The prime minister plans to announce this ban at the Women Deliver Conference, where New Zealand Prime Minister Ardern will also attend – can the prime minister confirm or deny this zero accountability, secret plan?”
Watch Clement’s question and the response:
Answering for the PM was Border Security and Organized Crime Reduction minister Bill Blair, who did not deny Clement’s claim.
“Our government remains absolutely committed to taking all the measures that are effective in keeping Canadians safe…there is no greater responsibility for any order of government than the safety of their citizens,” Blair replied. “We are prepared to consider whatever measures will be effective in doing so.”
The government’s bill to increase restrictions on firearm acquisition, ownership and transportation (Bill C-71) remains stuck in the Senate after its Security committee gutted key components, including the definition of a ‘non-restricted firearm’.
Introduced last year, C-71 also proposes to extend background checks from five years to the lifetime of the applicant and mandates retailers track sales for 20 years.
In an interview with The Post Millennial, Clement declined to reveal the sources for his claim. Asked if the information came from government officials or gun lobbyists, he said “I’m feeling really constrained on what I can say – it is definitely not any gun organization that has contacted me on this.”
“I honestly don’t know how broad this is, but I am led to believe that it’s sweeping,” said Clement. “Apart from where you stand on restricting guns, the way they’re going to do it is not through legislation…prevent(ing) parliamentarians from having a meaningful discussion on it – that’s certainly something I object to.”
The Women Deliver 2019 Global Conference will be held June 3-6 in Vancouver and is promising “over 6,000 world leaders, influencers, advocates, academics, activists, and journalists from more than 150 countries.”
The PM’s wife Sophie Grégoire Trudeau is among the conference dignitaries that also include New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
After 50 people were massacred in shootings at two Christchurch mosques in March, Ardern banned all semi-automatic weapons in the country. Six days ago, the death toll climbed to 51 after a victim died in hospital.
*correction: an earlier version of this story incorrectly identified Clement’s political affiliation as Conservative – The Post Millennial regrets any confusion this may have caused