Liberal Party moves Trudeau fundraiser from military base

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400

The federal Liberal Party has moved a fundraising event featuring Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that was originally booked on a Canadian Forces base — and might have violated military rules.

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400. Initially slated to occur in the Vimy Officers Mess at CFB Kingston, it has since been moved across town to St. Lawrence College.

Party spokesman Braeden Caley blamed capacity, accessibility and other logistical issues for the decision to change venues, saying in an email that “there’s been a very strong response to the upcoming event.”

READ MORE: Trudeau criticized for tweet to Trevor Noah pledging $50M charity gift

The largest space in the officers’ mess holds 240 people, according to CFB Kingston. St. Lawrence College has a conference centre that can hold 350.

While the officers’ mess is regularly rented out for private functions such as weddings, CFB Kingston spokesman Capt. Jeremy Mathews said the staff members who booked the Liberal event “were not aware of its fundraising nature.”

“While CFB Kingston staff were checking into the issue, the booking party moved the event to another location, thus resolving the issue,” Mathews said in an email, adding: “CFB Kingston is apolitical, and does not allow political meetings on the base.”

Even if the mess is available for private functions, lawyer and retired colonel Michel Drapeau said protecting the military from real or perceived political bias is essential — which is why such fundraising events are banned.

READ MORE: Trudeau wants new relationship with Indigenous people to be his legacy as PM

“The military has to be seen and to be perceived as apolitical and it would be wrong to use a defence establishment, a government property established under military control, for any political purposes,” Drapeau said. “The optics of that would go against the apolitical status of the military in a democracy.”

The Liberals began to give advance notice of political fundraising events last year after the prime minister was roasted for months for attending exclusive events at private homes, where donors paid up to $1,550 to rub shoulders with him.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

EDITORIAL: The dilemma of living in beautiful B.C.

Tourism dollars are needed for the economy while some locals are crying ‘stay away’

Three men face attempted murder charges after Harrison Hot Springs stabbing

Man, 24, sent to hospital with life-threatening injuries following attack Wednesday

Four activists face charges linked to 2019 Abbotsford hog-farm protest

Mischief and break-and-enter charges laid for incidents on four separate days prior to the protest

Chilliwack children can get tested locally, Fraser Health confirms

Erroneous information online and via 811 has many families driving to Abbotsford for testing

New treatment centre for addicted youth opening in Chilliwack

Facility ready to support up to 20 youth with substance-use challenges

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Visitors and non-residents entering closed remote B.C. First Nation’s territories

With limited resources, they say they don’t have any authority or power to enforce the closures

UBC loses appeal on Fisheries Act convictions

BC Supreme Court upholds order to pay $1.55-million fine

‘Tiny home’ being built for Abbotsford woman with severe allergies

Online campaign raises $59,000 for custom cargo trailer for Katie Hobson

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Acclaimed B.C. actor Brent Carver passes away

Carver, one of Canada’s greatest actors with a career spanning 40 years, passed away at home in Cranbrook

B.C. would not send students back to school if there was ‘overwhelming risk’: Horgan

Plan has left many parents across the province worried about their children’s safety

Canucks blank Wild 3-0, take series lead in penalty-filled NHL qualifying clash

Jacob Markstrom stops 27 shots to lead Vancouver past Minnesota

Most Read