Candidates under fire for comments
Some election candidates are on the hot seat because of comments they made in public forums over the past few days.
Ron Leech, the Wildrose candidate for Calgary-Greenway, told a Calgary radio audience on Sunday night that he has an advantage because he is white.
During the interview, Leech said, "I think, as a caucasian, I have an advantage. When different community leaders such as a Sikh leader or a Muslim leader speaks they really speak to their own people in many ways. As a caucasian I believe that I can speak to all the community."
Danielle Smith, campaigning on Tuesday in Calgary-Currie, said that Leech's comment must be taken in context and she isn't concerned.
"I'm not concerned about them. I think every candidate puts forward their best argument for why they should be the person the way represent the community. I know Dr. Leech runs a private school that has a large number of people from cultural communities. He has a very ethnically diverse riding. He's made great friendships and in roads with leaders of different cultural communities."
Over the weekend it was found that one of the Wildrose's Edmonton candidates, Allan Hunsperger, wrote an anti-gay post on a blog a year ago.
Hunsperger warned in a blog from June 2011 that instead of accepting gays and lesbians for who they are, they should be warned that their lifestyle will result in an eternity in hell.
"You will suffer the rest of eternity in the lake of fire, hell, a place of eternal suffering," Hunsperger said in the blog entry titled "Born this Way."
It was styled as a rebuttal to Lady Gaga's song of the same name, which is viewed by many as a gay anthem encouraging people to be true to themselves.
Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith says she doesn't understand the fuss over anti-gay comments made by Allan Hunsperger in a blog posting.
Hunsperger says he has been misunderstood and his comments were "my own personal religious views and were given in the capacity as a church leader."
Wildrose leader Danielle Smith refused to condemn Hunsperger for his views, saying the blog was written close to a year ago and represents his religious beliefs.
"The views he expressed were his personal views in the context of him being a pastor and I'm not going to discriminate against anyone not on the basis of sexual orientation and not on the basis of their religion. I believe in freedom of religion and I believe that religious people do also have an opportunity and should be encouraged to run for political office," said Smith.
Danielle Smith says the Wildrose will not introduce legislation on contentious social issues if it wins next Monday's election.
The PCs were also taking some heat on Tuesday for comments made by one of their candidates.
Mohammed Rasheed is running for the Tory party in Calgary McCall.
In an interview with a MRU student, Rasheed made a statement about who people in the riding should vote for.
He says that voters want someone like them in the capital and that got people asking "what do you mean people like them?"
Rasheed says he was talking about comnservatives and not the ethnic diversity of his community.
"Like what I mean, like them, meaning people living in this riding, hard working people that share the value of conservatism," said Rasheed.
Albertans head to the polls on Monday, April 23.