New advocacy group launches pre-election ad campaign against O'Toole, Conservatives

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OTTAWA — A new third-party advocacy group is launching an ad campaign aimed at ensuring Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole never becomes prime minister.

The Protecting Canada Project will start airing today its first 30-second ad, in English and French, on television and online.

The ad predicts that an O'Toole government would cut funding for health care, even as the country struggles through the COVID-19 pandemic.

The tag line concludes that O'Toole and the Conservatives "are hazardous to your health — at the worst possible time."

Group spokesman Ian Wayne, who formerly worked for NDP leaders Jack Layton and Tom Mulcair, says Protecting Canada was formed by Canadians "with diverse political experience" and a common goal of ensuring the Conservatives don't win the next election. How an O'Toole-led Conservative government would tackle the massive national debt and deficit created by pandemic spending will be a key question for the party in the next campaign.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 22, 2021.

The Canadian Press