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Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer took to social media Friday to say he will not apologize for participating in a day-long election strategy session with wealthy oil executives at a luxury resort in Alberta earlier this month.

"I will not apologize for standing up for Canada’s oil and gas workers and to defeat a government that is intent on phasing them out," Scheer said in a Facebook post, while sharing a link to a Globe and Mail story about his involvement in a behind-closed-doors meeting with members of an oil advocacy group called the Modern Miracle Network on April 11.

On its website, the group describes itself as, "citizens concerned about Canada’s future prosperity, who want to have an adult conversation about energy choices."

According to the Globe, session attendees included leaders of four oil companies, conservative organizers and the president of Canada's largest oilpatch lobby group, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

Democratic Institutions Minister Karina Gould told the Globe the meetings were "concerning," given Canada's "very robust laws ... when it comes to transparency and when it comes to anti-collusion with third-party groups and political parties." She added, “I think it’s concerning that type of co-ordination would be going on, and I think it is concerning that it is happening behind closed doors in secret, and I think Canadians deserve more transparency to know what the intentions and objectives of their political leaders are."

The Globe broke news of the secret Alberta meeting this week, reporting on the event's agenda, which showed that Scheer was the keynote speaker and there were discussions about "rallying the base" and mapping the Conservatives' road to victory in the 2019 federal election.

In Kanata, Ont. on Friday, where he was meeting with party supporters, Scheer told reporters, "I meet with people all the time. I meet with different representatives of many different types of industries."

He told supporters: "We are a grassroots party. ... We don't have well-connected friends that, as we learned today, funnel money through donations. We don't have the types of corporate buddies that Justin has."

Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna also responded to the story by taking to Twitter and accusing Scheer and his friends of trying to block action to fight climate change across Canada.

"Straight from Harper's playbook: Andrew Scheer has been caught scheming behind closed doors with wealthy executives to gut environmental protection laws, silence critics, and make pollution free again," McKenna wrote. "We're working with Canadians everywhere to find common ground and put solutions into action that protect nature and fight climate change. Meanwhile, Scheer and his powerful friends plan to slap critics with lawsuits and smear campaigns."

On Friday afternoon, Scheer reposted a December, 2018 video of himself participating in a pro-oil truck convoy in Alberta. He wrote, "While Justin Trudeau's Liberals want to phase out Canada's energy workers, I am not ashamed of fighting for them – and it's no secret."

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An adult conversation about energy policies that rob our children of their hopes and dreams for a future on a viable planet. Scheer and his billionaire oil exec buddies are not in it for anyone but themselves. Shame on Scheer. Some father he is.

My thoughts exactly!!

"an election strategy session" with the oil industry. Sounds like he was being told what the Conservative platform will be...and he got the message...twitting about opposition to the carbon tax and Bill C-69...two projects sponsored by CAPP and the rest of those climate criminals.

Back in the '70's when I visited Alberta I was impressed with the clarity of its air. I did not see much of the oil infrastructure and its cities were still liveable. I doubt I could say that nowadays. It seems a bitter and ironic oxymoron that Scheer and Oil executives should meet at a "luxury" resort in a province they have pillaged, devastated, and are leaving with a multi million dollar burden of debt and environmental liabilities. Like the biblical story, big petro came down on Alberta "like the wolves on a fold..."

Actual leadership would be leading us into a better, sustainable future not pretending climate change isn't an Incredibly serious problem. Those people and the oil patch who are hurting right now are hurting because they based all their plans on $100 barrels of oil. Their competitors cut that in half and they were gutted like fish. The right wing is always big on personal responsibility and the sacredness of "the market" so why are they trying to blame everything on Trudeau and not Notley?

Oops...that should read "Trudeau and Notley"

You know what's even more scandalous? One of the panels, dubbed “Paths to federal election victory" was led by an executive for polling firm Ipsos Public Affairs, who was introduced by CAPP president Tim McMillan. Ipsos, which will soon be issuing polling results on the federal election.

If, as Mr. Scheer claims, "I will not apologize for standing up for Canada’s oil and gas workers", and he has the best interest of workers in mind, then why hold these meetings in secret? Were worker interests represented? The article indicates that only company interests were being served here. Scheer is as thick with the oil patch owners as Trudeau is with SNC.
Canadians are left with two corporate parties in the Conservatives and Liberals, a weakly represented NDP with Mr. Singh, and a very competent but ignored Green party.
It is tough times to be a voter in Canada.

Well said and sadly very true. We have no good choices.

Sitting here in NB watching the flood devastion I find it hard to comprehend how our politicians mainly Sheer and company can even consider promoting more fossil fuel development. If they are discussing a phase out of fossil fuels and a transition into renewables - that I can support.

The phase out is going to happen, but saying it out loud is political suicide and divides Canada. Not even Trudeau says that any more though he knows it is going to happen.

Why no complaints when the Trudeau government held secret meetings with Kinder Morgan head office that led to taxpayers coughing up 4.5 billion dollars? Why does Justin get a bye? The left wing crowd seem to have their own blemishes that the MSM conveniently overlook. Would that have anything to do with Justin's gift of $595 million dollars to the MSM?

It is hard not to use profanity to describe what a lie this is: "... We don't have well-connected friends that, as we learned today, funnel money through donations. We don't have the types of corporate buddies that Justin has."

I can't stand Justin Trudeau, but at best this guy is an ABTV (anybody but Trudeau vote) as an alternative. Lots save us from this entire lot. Is this the best Canada has to offer?

What really bothers me about the session, (I have no doubt Trudeau dues the same thing), is they talked election strategy. It wasn't just seeking a viewpoint on policy, but "collusion" on election strategy with wealthy corporate interests. His explanation proves he hides whatever intelligence he does have extremely well.