Bob Chiarelli denies saying Andrea Horwath 'pees all over the map' amid Queen's Park debate
NDP leader was criticizing government for cancelling energy projects
A heated debate at Queen's Park appeared to go straight into the toilet on Wednesday after Ontario's energy minister appeared to say NDP Leader Andrea Horwath "pees all over the map."
During question period, Bob Chiarelli appeared to say: "When the leader gets up it's hard to focus on the matter.... When she takes Kenora in the North and she takes Toronto in the south, Mr. Speaker, and she pees all over the map."
Chiarelli later clarified his statement — made during a fierce debate about how the Liberal government has handled several energy projects — saying he used a word that had been "interpreted to be an offensive slang word."
Chiarelli pointed out that Hansard, which records what's said in Queen's Park, revised his statement to: "she's — she's all over the map."
"If my pronunciation was unclear and it appeared as though I said something I didn't, I would like to offer an apology to the Leader of the Third Party," Chiarelli said later at Queen's Park, after he rose on a point of personal privilege.
The comment was made as politicians criticized the government for how it's dealt with cancelled energy projects.
On Wednesday, the Ontario Provincial Police launched a criminal investigation over allegations that that government officials destroyed documents related to a cancelled wind project near Lake Ontario wind project.
Horwath called for the premier to launch a commission of inquiry into how public energy contracts are awarded and managed in the province. "People end up paying the price, speaker," Horwath said.
That prompted Chiarelli's comment.
The energy minister also blasted Horwath's "shotgun approach," to criticizing the government and said that she's jealous of the government's success — highlighted by Moody's recently upgrading Ontario's credit rating to stable.
"She won't talk about any of that, Mr. Speaker. She's embarrassed by how successful we are."
Debate broke down following Chiarelli's comments as politicians on both sides yelled at one another.