By Hilary White

OAKVILLE, December 20, 2005 ( – The latest election gaffe from the Liberals comes from the Oakville Liberal riding association where confirmed abortion-supporter, Bonnie Brown, is running for re-election.

Elie Betito, a prominent volunteer for Brown’s campaign, responded to an email to the campaign from a voter who took the Liberals to task in strong terms for the Sponsorship scandal and Paul Martin’s proposal to ban handguns.

The email writer, Stacey Cherwonak, who identified herself as a forensic firearms specialist with the RCMP, wrote, “I want to thank your party for making it clear who I should be supporting in the upcoming election; in addition to the millions (if not billions) of dollars that your party has stolen from Canadians since 1993, Paul Martin’s speech today makes it clear that your party’s word isn’t worth the breath it’s spoken with.”

Cherwonak said that she had that day joined the Conservative Party and made a $100 donation. She signed her note, “Forensic Firearms Technologist-RCMP, Sport Shooter, and sick to death of you lying bastards.”

Betito, who is also listed as the Liberal Party riding association president for Oakville, emailed back to the voter, “take your NRA, GUN LOVING ASS BACK TO THE U.S. WHERE YOU BELONG.”

After the incident was discovered by bloggers and then leaked to the media a spokesman for Brown’s campaign said that Betito had resigned. Brown made no comment about the actual remark or its assumptions about conservatives, saying to the Hamilton Spectator through a spokesman only that she was “disturbed by the terrible way it was handled.”

The Spectator also reports that Brown’s spokeswoman said Cherwonak was not a constituent and noted that she had used profanity in her original message. But she said that didn’t excuse Betito’s response.

Kate McMillan, a Saskatchewan-based conservative blogger who covered the incident, commented that it might be a good sign for the Conservatives. “I’m not a psychologist,” she wrote, “I just play one on the internet – but does this sound like the response of someone who’s happy and optimistic about the direction the campaign is going?”

Small-c conservatives have long pointed to Liberal Party arrogance as a major point of contention in Canada. After remarks from chief Liberal spokesman and strategist Scott Reid saying that parents could not be trusted with the $1,200 per year benefit because they would just “blow” the money on “beer and popcorn,” another major Liberal Party spokesman, John Duffy, in a CTV interview refused to apologize for the insult to Canadian parents.

In the televised English language debate on Friday, Paul Martin assumed the Trudeau mantle and asserted the Liberal Party’s right to define the Canadian national identity. Martin implied that, despite the fact that most Canadians polled support the traditional definition of marriage, anyone who disagreed with the Liberal policy on “gay marriage” should not be allowed to run for office.

Elie Betito’s resignation following his insult to Cherwonak is, however, no indication that Liberal party policy requires MP’s to respond in the same way for insulting every working family in Canada. Reid and Duffy remain in their positions and maintain their prominence in the Liberal campaign.

Read related coverage:
  Adscam Liberals Don’t Trust Canadian Parents With Child-Care Dollars

Read coverage on Kate McMillan’s blog, “Small Dead Animals”