Liberals criticize Pierre Poilievre for crying terrorism

“It’s not something a leader should do. This is extremely irresponsible, and it plays with the emotions and security of Canadians,” protested the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Karina Gould, on Thursday.

“Leadership is about reassuring Canadians. It’s about bringing calm. It’s about ensuring safety, not instilling fear, not agitating them. We must ask ourselves for what purpose he jumped to this conclusion,” she also said.

At the start of question period in the House on Wednesday, as news of the explosion of a car at the border between Canada and the United States was just emerging, Pierre Poilievre spoke of an act of terrorism.

“We have just heard media reports concerning a terrorist attack perpetrated at the border, in Niagara […] Can the Prime Minister give us information regarding this terrorist attack? he asked around 2:24 p.m.

Poilievre blames CTV

Asked to return to his comments during a press conference in Toronto on Thursday, the Conservative leader argued that he was relying on information relayed by CTV, and this, not without attacking the journalist who questioned him.

The problem is that the English-speaking network published around 2:50 p.m. — more than twenty minutes after the leader spoke about terrorism in the House — an article with this headline: “Canada operates under the assumption that the explosion of a vehicle at Rainbow Bridge is linked to terrorism (sources)”.

The video footage of the salvos launched by Pierre Poilievre was shared on social networks by his deputy leader, Melissa Lanstman, as well as by several right-wing organizations such as Rebel News, True North and Canada Proud.

Pierre Poilievre was the only party leader to mention a terrorist act. And Thursday morning, Bloc leader Yves-François Blanchet did not hesitate to establish a contrast between his reserve and the reaction, according to him partisan, of his political rival.

“My immediate and cautious reaction yesterday following the event at the Ontario/USA border. Cautious because we didn’t know. This morning [Thursday], everything suggests that it was not an attack. Another leader talked about terrorism too soon to make political points,” he wrote on X.

A reassessment of the terrorist risk requested

The Leader of the Opposition visited a Toronto synagogue on Thursday to demand “common-sense Conservative measures” to protect Canadians. Among these is the request to look into the assessment of the threat in Canada.

“We want the government to review its terrorism risk assessment,” he said, recalling that the United Kingdom wrote in its travel advice for Canada that terrorists were “very likely to attempt to commit attacks.”

“The government [of Canada] says the risk is minimal. How can the risk be at a minimum when the government said there was a terrorist attack against synagogues and Jewish schools in Montreal? », questioned Pierre Poilievre.

The level of risk in Canada has been considered moderate since October 2014 — a month marked by two terrorist attacks in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu and Ottawa. This level – there are five in total, very low, low, moderate, high and critical – means “a violent terrorist attack could occur”.

Furthermore, in its travel advice for the United Kingdom, the Canadian government reciprocally recommends exercising “great caution […] due to the terrorist threat” looming in the country.

This article is originally published on

Beth Malcolm

Beth Malcolm is Scottish based Journalist at Heriot-Watt University studying French and British Sign Language. She is originally from the north west of England but is living in Edinburgh to complete her studies.