B.C. Liberal MLA Harry Bloy sparked an uproar in the B.C. legislature on Monday when he accused NDP Opposition leader Adrian Dix of lying and stealing.
The remarks came in the midst of another attack on NDP energy critic John Horgan, whom Bloy accused of changing his position on BC Hydro's controversial smart meters.
"Is that why he speaks out of both sides of his mouth? Cause it really makes me wonder how a leader of the Opposition can steal from the public. Is that what we're trying to do here?" said Bloy.
"It really makes me wonder about the leader of the opposition stealing from the public, fraud. I wonder how he proposed to his wife. Is he like his good friend Svend Robinson?"
Robinson, a former Burnaby NDP MP, pleaded guilty in 2004 to stealing a $64,000 ring from a public auction site.
It wasn't clear from Bloy's remarks what specifically he was accusing Dix of, but the Opposition leader did admit recently he was given a warning by SkyTrain police when he could not find his transit pass.
Bloy was repeatedly cautioned by deputy Speaker Linda Reid before he finally withdrew his comments.
The New Democrats were furious and demanded an apology for what MLA Claire Trevena called outrageous fiction and fabrication.
Outside the house, Bloy did eventually apologize.
Premier Christy Clark said Bloy's remarks were completely offside.
"I think [the comments] were totally inappropriate," Clark said later. "It was the right thing for him to apologize unequivocally for them."
The premier was asked if she thought, as Bloy suggested, that Dix was a thief and a liar.
"Absolutely not," said Clark.
The Liberals, meanwhile, are accusing New Democrat Nicholas Simons of using unparliamentarily hand gestures in the house.
Trevena says it's no wonder the public has no respect for the work done by the MLAs.
Bloy was appointed Minister of State for Multiculturalism by Premier Christy Clark after being the only sitting Liberal MLA to endorse her leadership campaign last year. But he resigned from the provincial cabinet last month after he admitted leaking an email to a private company.