Toronto extreme right figure Faith Goldy has a new title to add to her laundry list of descriptors. Along with “white nationalist,” “neo-Nazi podcast guest,” and “fired from Rebel News for being too far-right,” Goldy can now claim to have breached mayoral election spending laws in Canada’s most populous city.
The Toronto Star reported today that an audit by a third-party accountant concluded Goldy broke a number of terms in the Municipal Elections Act during her failed bid to become mayor of Toronto. The review was triggered by a complaint from Canadian Anti-Hate Network executive director Evan Balgord and carried out by chartered accountant William Molson who audited the failed 2018 candidate’s expenses. At a hearing in April 2019 related to the audit, Goldy accused the review of being driven by “politics and money.”
The Star reported Molson found the following contraventions in Goldy’s election finances:
- Accepting a total of $101,118 from ineligible donors outside Ontario.
- Exceeding the legal $25,000 limit for donating to one’s own campaign by $56,388.63.
- Accepting and failing to report $12,365.99 after Dec. 31, 2018, without requesting an extension of the legal campaign period.
- Failing to report $86,398.49 in campaign-period expenses.
- Failing to report $56,117.95 in contributions by non-Ontario residents, who could not legally donate to her mayoral campaign, before the end of 2018.
The breaches stem in part from Goldy’s attempts to raise money for a legal challenge after a Bell Media station refused to air her campaign ads. Molson’s report also noted that Goldy was unco-operative in providing information for the audit.
Back in 2019, PressProgress combed through Goldy’s campaign finances to determine who was propping up her mayoral run. They found that despite Goldy’s rants against “establishment elites,” nearly $40,000 came from fewer than 20 rich donors in the Toronto area, including real estate developers, enterprise architects, and mutual fund investors. This came just months after they found Russian disinformation networks pushing Goldy’s campaign.
Despite all of this, Goldy placed third in the election, getting more than 25,000 votes. For Canadians in general and Torontonians in particular, the votes she garnered confirmed that white supremacist, white nationalist far-right support is not a uniquely American phenomenon. Even in Canada’s most diverse city, Goldy’s messaging had found a substantial base. For progressives, the campaign and results also reaffirmed the importance of the city’s anti-fascist organizing.
Given the resistance of far-right bases to logic, morality, and reason, however, it seems unlikely that Goldy’s financial wrongdoings will do much, if anything, to alienate her supporters. This prompts a nagging question: how do we deal with Canada’s far-right?