UCP candidate pulls out of election race alleging ‘smear' campaign by outsider
CTV Calgary Staff
Published Monday, March 25, 2019 7:44AM MDT
Last Updated Monday, March 25, 2019 7:04PM MDT
The UCP candidate in the riding of Calgary-South East has resigned from the election race saying someone outside the party was trying to ‘smear’ her campaign by releasing images of past comments she made on social media.
Eva Kiryakos is the second UCP candidate to pull out of the campaign in less than a week.
On Sunday, Kiryakos posted a video statement on her Facebook page saying that she is withdrawing from the election race.
In the video, she said she is speaking up because she has ‘had enough of the threats and leaks and vilifying me for my beliefs and values.’
Kiryakos shared some of the social posts in the video and said that ‘we all retweet and share articles.’
One of the posts she shared was a link to an article on the migrant rape crisis in Germany and another example showed an exchange on twitter about the ATA’s decision on gender neutral washrooms.
Kiryakos tweeted that she should ‘have the right to choose for my children to not be brainwashed into accepting perversions as "alternative lifestyles.”’ In the video she defended the tweet saying that she was concerned for her daughter…
'The possibility of a grown man sharing a washroom with the little girl to me is a perversion. I used the words “alternative lifestyle” because the people I engaged with on Twitter were using those words so I repeated them back. I voiced my honest opinion, and YES, I asked if the NDP had an agenda. People started calling me names like transphobe, bigot and misinterpreted the words I said.'
She also referenced a tweet about dressing modestly and said that both males and females ‘have to have self-control and respect for themselves and others.’
She said she was ‘taught to speak up’ and ‘practice freedom of speech’ and that is what she did in the examples in the video.
Kiryakos also said in the video post that people don’t have to agree with her opinions but that she felt ‘silenced’ and ‘cornered’ because she spoke up for what she believes in .
'This culture of bullying people who have different opinions and backgrounds, faiths, cultures, genders and identities needs to stop. To censor myself and continue to be scared is to give into this bully and his threats. How do you stop a bully? You stand up to them. So this is me, standing up as a woman, a mother, an immigrant, and an Albertan. I will continue to voice my opinion. I will not be afraid to speak my mind. I will not be afraid to stand up for myself and for all Albertans.'
In her Facebook statement, she said is resigning because it is best for the party and because she doesn't want to be a distraction to other candidates.
(With files from Mark Villani)