Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Leitch Asks Whether Ottawa Should Screen Immigrants for 'Anti-Canadian Values'

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Leitch Asks Whether Ottawa Should Screen Immigrants for 'Anti-Canadian Values'

Article excerpt

Leitch campaign asks about vetting immigrants

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OTTAWA - Conservative leadership candidate Kellie Leitch wants to know what her supporters think about vetting would-be immigrants and refugees for "anti-Canadian values."

The question comes in a survey that was emailed to people who signed up for news from her campaign. It seeks opinions and gauges support for a variety of positions and issues, including electoral reform, corporate tax cuts and the legalization and regulation of marijuana for recreational use.

The question reads: "Should the Canadian government screen potential immigrants for anti-Canadian values as part of its normal screening for refugees and landed immigrants?"

Some of the other questions are fairly straightforward, such as whether the federal government should retain the supply management system for farm products such as eggs and dairy, summarizing the common arguments for and against.

Others are more provocative, such as the one about screening immigrants.

U.S. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has called for would-be immigrants to undergo what he calls "extreme vetting" to determine their stance on things like religious freedom, gender equality and LGBTQ rights.

The Leitch survey does not spell out what is meant by "anti-Canadian values," nor otherwise declare where Leitch herself stands on the issue.

Neither did her campaign manager Nick Kouvalis, who said Thursday he would not comment on the substance of the survey.

Kouvalis did say more than 8,000 people had responded to the survey since Tuesday and that it was based on subjects Leitch had been hearing about from Conservatives during her travels across Canada since launching her leadership bid this spring.

During the 2015 federal election campaign, Leitch helped promote a controversial Conservative promise to establish a tip line for so-called "barbaric cultural practices," aimed at helping the RCMP enforce a law aimed at cracking down on forced marriages and keeping polygamists out of Canada.

Not long after she began her Conservative leadership campaign, Leitch expressed regret for that position, even becoming visibly emotional during an interview this past April on CBC News Network's panel show "Power & Politics. …

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