Nova Scotia

Cape Breton Liberal candidate unworthy of seat after offensive tweets, say Tories

The federal Conservatives have slammed the Liberals for allowing one of their candidates in Nova Scotia to remain on the ballot after he admitted to racist and sexist posts on social media.

Jaime Battiste apologized for tweets he said he made during 'difficult times in my life'

Jaime Battiste is the Liberal candidate in the Nova Scotia riding of Sydney-Victoria. The Toronto Sun revealed the tweets made by Battiste on Friday. (Gary Mansfield/CBC)

The federal Conservatives have berated the Liberals for allowing one of their candidates in Nova Scotia to remain on the ballot after he admitted to racist and sexist posts on social media.

The Toronto Sun revealed the tweets made by Jaime Battiste, who is running in Sydney-Victoria.

"Despite these sexist comments, Battiste is allowed to run as a Liberal candidate for Justin Trudeau. These comments are disgusting and inexcusable. An individual who makes this many disparaging comments is not worthy of sitting in the House of Commons," said a Tory news release on Saturday.

Battiste has locked down his Twitter and Instagram accounts and wiped his Facebook page clean. As a result, CBC News cannot access the posts.

But the Toronto Sun did highlight several tweets in the story it released on Friday.

"Why do I assume every skinny aboriginal girl is on crystal meth or pills?" said a Feb. 2, 2012, tweet by Battiste.

In the statement, Lisa Raitt, the Conservative candidate for Milton, Ont., called Trudeau "a fake feminist " for allowing the Cape Breton man to stand as a Liberal candidate.

Battiste is a resident of Eskasoni First Nation and Potlotek First Nation, and educates people about Indigenous treaties. He's a published writer on Mi'kmaw laws, history and knowledge, according to his profile on the Liberal Party's website. 

Battiste graduated from Dalhousie University's law school in 2004.

'These were things I said during difficult times in my life'

A year later, the National Aboriginal Healing Organization named him as one of the national Aboriginal role models in Canada.

The Toronto Sun highlighted a sexist tweet from July 11, 2013.

"Cleaning, folding, cooking, feeling like an epic fail that I haven't found a woman who can stand me long enough to do this for me," said the tweet.

CBC News requested an interview with Battiste, but the Liberal Party declined the request. Instead, it sent out an emailed statement attributed to him.

"I would like to apologize for my comments," he said. "At times in my life, I have made crude jokes that I thought were funny at the time, but I realize now that these words were offensive. These were things I said during difficult times in my life, and they are not a reflection of my beliefs or who I am today. I apologize unreservedly."

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