Canada

LILLEY: Politicians going bare-faced leaves them red-faced

Politicians set the rules but don’t always follow them.

This weekend a federal Liberal cabinet minister and Ontario Conservative MPP were called out for failing to wear masks in public.

Justin Trudeau’s health minister was essentially telling Canadians “Do as I say, not as Hajdu,” when she was photographed without a mask on over the weekend at Toronto’s Pearson Airport.

A photo posted to Twitter on Sunday showed Liberal MP and health minister Patty Hajdu sitting in the Air Canada lounge and having a laugh with an unseen person while not wearing a mask.

As the photo began gaining traction on Twitter, Hajdu responded by saying she always wears a mask at the airport.

“Following public health rules is important to me. I wear my mask at all times at Toronto Pearson, and only take it off to eat or drink, as allowed,” Hajdu tweeted.

There was no food or drink visible in the photo which was taken from Hajdu’s left side. What was on her right could not be seen in the image.

It’s not the first time Hajdu has been called out for apparently not following the rules set out by government during the pandemic. In July it was revealed that the lead person for the federal government on health matters used a private jet to fly from Ottawa to Thunder Bay while telling the public not to travel.

Hajdu had flown home four times on the government’s luxury jet between the beginning of April and middle of May, the height of pandemic lockdown, at a cost of more than $100,000.

In Ontario, it was Sam Oosterhoff, the parliamentary assistant to the education minister, who was caught bare-faced in public.

A screengrab of a social media post made by PC MPP Sam Oosterhoff. The faces of children have been blurred by the Sun. Photo by Screengrab /Twitter

Oosterhoff posted photos on Facebook over the weekend with 42 people, none of them wearing masks. Quickly called out online, Oosterhoff deleted the photos and apologized.

The MPP from Niagara said that there were fewer than 50 people at the event which took place in a banquet hall and that it followed all local rules and public health measures.

“However, I should have worn a mask when we took a quick pic, given the proximity of everyone, and I apologize for failing to do so,” he said.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford said that Oosterhoff’s apology was good enough for him and no action would be taken.

In Ottawa, Hajdu faced several jabs from the opposition for the maskless photo but is not expected to face any discipline from her boss.

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