Liberal Party moves Trudeau fundraiser from military base

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400

The federal Liberal Party has moved a fundraising event featuring Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that was originally booked on a Canadian Forces base — and might have violated military rules.

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400. Initially slated to occur in the Vimy Officers Mess at CFB Kingston, it has since been moved across town to St. Lawrence College.

Party spokesman Braeden Caley blamed capacity, accessibility and other logistical issues for the decision to change venues, saying in an email that “there’s been a very strong response to the upcoming event.”

READ MORE: Trudeau criticized for tweet to Trevor Noah pledging $50M charity gift

The largest space in the officers’ mess holds 240 people, according to CFB Kingston. St. Lawrence College has a conference centre that can hold 350.

While the officers’ mess is regularly rented out for private functions such as weddings, CFB Kingston spokesman Capt. Jeremy Mathews said the staff members who booked the Liberal event “were not aware of its fundraising nature.”

“While CFB Kingston staff were checking into the issue, the booking party moved the event to another location, thus resolving the issue,” Mathews said in an email, adding: “CFB Kingston is apolitical, and does not allow political meetings on the base.”

Even if the mess is available for private functions, lawyer and retired colonel Michel Drapeau said protecting the military from real or perceived political bias is essential — which is why such fundraising events are banned.

READ MORE: Trudeau wants new relationship with Indigenous people to be his legacy as PM

“The military has to be seen and to be perceived as apolitical and it would be wrong to use a defence establishment, a government property established under military control, for any political purposes,” Drapeau said. “The optics of that would go against the apolitical status of the military in a democracy.”

The Liberals began to give advance notice of political fundraising events last year after the prime minister was roasted for months for attending exclusive events at private homes, where donors paid up to $1,550 to rub shoulders with him.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS/VIDEO: Wings and Wheels set for weekend lift-off in Abbotsford

Fundraiser to raise money for Crystal Gala Foundation and the fight against breast cancer

Kelowna animal rights activist speaks out amid charges in 2019 Abbotsford hog-farm protest

Amy Soranno, along with three other activists, will appear in court on Sept. 3

Abbotsford aims to finally crack down on long-term bylaw-breakers

City boosts top fine for repeat offenders $50,000

Abbotsford restaurant fundraiser supports moms and kids in Mexico

Brodeur’s Bistro donates proceeds on Aug. 17 to Casa de Luz charity

POLICE/2020: Street checks by police down in Abbotsford, but no plans to completely end them

Figures show street checks in Abbotsford relatively representative of city’s population

‘Don’t kill my mom’: Ryan Reynolds calls on young British Columbians to be COVID-smart

‘Deadpool’ celebrity responds to premier’s call for social influence support

Captain Horvat’s OT marker lifts Canucks to 4-3 win over Blues

Vancouver takes 2-0 lead in best-of-7 NHL playoff series with St. Louis

Widow of slain Red Deer doctor thanks community for support ahead of vigil

Fellow doctors, members of the public will gather for a physically-distanced vigil in central Alberta

Protesters showcase massive old yellow cedar as Port Renfrew area forest blockade continues

9.5-foot-wide yellow cedar measured by Ancient Forest Alliance campaigners in Fairy Creek watershed

Taking dog feces and a jackhammer to neighbourhood dispute costs B.C. man $16,000

‘Pellegrin’s actions were motivated by malice …a vindictive, pointless, dangerous and unlawful act’

Racist stickers at Keremeos pub leaves group uneasy and angry

The ‘OK’ hand gesture is a known hate-symbol

VIDEO: World responds to B.C. girl after pandemic cancels birthday party

Dozens of cards and numerous packages were delivered to six-year-old Charlie Manning

Expected fall peak of COVID-19 in Canada could overwhelm health systems: Tam

National modelling projections released Friday show an expected peak in cases this fall

Most Read