A central Alberta MP’s effort to stop third-party political advertising, in hopes of tackling foreign influence in Canadian elections, has stalled.
Red Deer-Lacombe MP Blaine Calkins’ private member’s bill was defeated at second reading in the House of Commons on Wednesday evening.
“Naturally, I am very disappointed by tonight’s outcome,” said Calkins in a statement.
“But the Liberals and NDP indicated from the very start that they would not support it. This vote clearly shows who has the most to gain from foreign influence in Canada’s elections.”
Bill C-406 was first introduced in June 2018. The legislation aimed to fix a loophole in elections law that allows foreign entities to contribute millions to third-party groups supporting one political party over another.
Calkins has said groups such as Vancouver-based Leadnow, which organized strategic voting initiatives targeting conservative politicians, are getting some of their funding from outside Canada.
The MP called that sort of funding a “kind of a backdoor way” for foreign money to get into the Canadian election process.
“Canada’s Conservatives value the sovereignty of our nation, which is why we supported this bill,” says Calkins in his statement.
“It is important to us that Canada’s future government is decided by Canadians and only Canadians.”