Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet has delivered an ultimatum to Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Resign or face a fall election, Blanchet said on Wednesday (August 12).
Blanchet’s resignation call includes Trudeau’s chief of staff Katie Telford, and Finance Minister Bill Morneau.
Blanchet suggested that he has lost confidence in the Trudeau government.
Blanchet said the government is not “worthy” of the public’s trust in the wake of the WE Charity controversy.
The WE Charity scandal was sparked by Trudeau and Morneau failing to recuse themselves from cabinet talks involving the organization despite family ties to it.
Blanchet also said that revelations around a contract for the commercial rent-relief program that went to a company employing Telford’s husband prove the Liberal government is no longer trustworthy.
Blanchet said even though the country is still grappling with COVID-19, keeping people in office who are “mismanaging” the government would be more dangerous than sending Canadians to the polls in a pandemic.
He said that’s why he is issuing an ultimatum to Trudeau, Telford and Morneau.
Blanchet’s remarks on August 12 came as the House of Commons was set to return for one of its four scheduled summer sittings amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
It also comes as the government is engulfed in controversy over the WE Charity scandal.
Blanchet told reporters Trudeau, Morneau and Telford have been “mismanaging” the government.
He said that allowing them to remain in positions of power would do more damage for the country than forcing Canadians to head out to cast their ballots in the midst of the pandemic.
He said he will move a motion of non-confidence in October if his demands are not met.
The Liberals won a minority government in the 2019 fall election.
This means that they need the support of at least one other opposition party to pass legislation and survive any votes of confidence.
Both Trudeau and Morneau are under investigation by the ethics commissioner for not recusing themselves from the cabinet discussions on the WE Charity deal, given both have family financial ties to the group.
On July 24, opposition parties racheted up their calls for Trudeau and Morneau to resign.
Last month, Conservatives and the Bloc Quebecois said that the Liberals could be facing a fall election, if actions beyond their apologies over their roles in the WE Charity controversy aren’t taken.
Opposition parties have prompted the ethics commissioner to launch conflict of interest investigations into both Trudeau and Morneau’s dealings in regards to a $912-million student service grant program that WE Charity was set to administer.
WE Charity backed away from the program after a series of headlines about their own internal issues as well as others calling into question Trudeau’s ethics and the potential conflict of interest he and his finance minister may have put themselves in by not recusing themselves from the decision-making table on the deal.
Trudeau and Morneau’s families have connections to the organization.
The House of Commons is currently supposed to resume in full on September 21, which would be Blanchet’s first expected opportunity to raise a motion of non-confidence.