Marilyn Gladu says her bid to become leader of the Conservative Party of Canada was derailed by the pandemic and her own party.
“Nobody could plan for a pandemic, that much is clear. But I was surprised to see my own party work against me to keep me from the ballot,” the MP for Sarnia-Lambton said.
“I did represent well in this race. The team worked really hard, but I can’t say I’m not thoroughly disappointed in the party.”
Gladu planned to gather mandatory signatures at 25 organized events cancelled by the pandemic emergency orders. She appealed to party leaders to suspend the leadership race, but they refused, she said.
Nor would the committee accept her $100,000 deposit, citing reasons contrary to Election Canada rules, she said.
Her defunct campaign is $20,000 in debt and she must pay it back by year-end, she said.
With her leadership hopes dashed, the second-term MP has been busy helping stranded Canadian travellers get home.
“Usually when the MP gets involved public servants give it more attention,” said Gladu, the former Conservative health critic.