Speaking publicly for the primary time about her social gathering’s inner strife, former Green social gathering chief Elizabeth May is urging those that oppose chief Annamie Paul to strike a truce together with her allies earlier than a extensively anticipated fall election.
“I fully support the Green Party of Canada, our values and our constitution,” she stated in a media assertion in the present day. “Our leader is Annamie Paul and only our members have authority to call that into question.
“We want to tug collectively for what seems to be an imminent election marketing campaign.”
May’s comments came a day after Paul held a press conference in Toronto and urged her opponents within the party to unite behind her for the coming election.
“I need to lead us into the following election. I need to supply my service to our members and to Canada and I’m hoping that those who really feel in any other case will wait till a extra applicable time to make a transfer,” Paul said Monday.
The conflict between Paul and elements in her party hit a crisis point in May when, during an escalation of violence in the Middle East, Paul issued a statement calling for de-escalation and a return to dialogue.
Fredericton MP Jenica Atwin, who left the Green party for the Liberals in June, called Paul’s statement “completely insufficient.” Her departure left the Greens with just two MPs.
Paul’s political adviser at the time, Noah Zatzman, said in a May 14 Facebook post that he had experienced antisemitism and discrimination within the party and criticized politicians he said were displaying antisemitism, including Green MPs.
He wrote that he would work to “usher in progressive local weather champions who’re antifa and professional LGBT and professional indigenous sovereignty and Zionists!!!!!”
Federal council vs. Paul
The party’s federal council told Paul she had to publicly repudiate Zatzman’s comments in order to avoid a confidence vote. She has refused to do so and the party now seems to have settled into a truce.
Today, May told The Tyee that she believes the failure to address Zatzman’s antisemitism claims led directly to Atwin’s defection.
“To me, that is deeply surprising that was allowed to occur with out him being reprimanded and instantly eliminated. This was not a gray space. This was a severe transgression for anybody in any chief’s workplace in any social gathering within the historical past of any democracy that I can consider,” May told The Tyee.
“It was deeply unacceptable. That’s why we misplaced Jenica.”
In her statement today, May said she was deeply troubled by Atwin’s departure and the rest of the party felt the same way — but “the misplaced anger, blame and name-calling which have adopted it are doing much more injury than the occasion itself.”
May said she hadn’t spoken out about the internal party strife before now because Paul had asked her not to wade in, fearing that her 13 years at the party’s helm could influence the debate too greatly.
May also said that she has not been involved in the party’s internal arguments and has no role with the party’s federal council or any of the party’s subcommittees.
“Rumours have prompted media to proceed to ask for clarification if I’m taking part in some position in social gathering issues. I’ve no position — official or unofficial — in any of the Green Party governing our bodies,” May stated.