By Steve Lambert, The Canadian Press
WINNIPEG – A Liberal candidate for the Manitoba election next month is in hot water over social media comments in which he uses derogatory terms to refer to women.
Jamie Hall, who the Liberals nominated Tuesday in the Southdale constituency in Winnipeg, also wrote a novel in which he compared explicit sex acts by women to driving a race car. As a bar promoter, he filmed videos promoting “sexy-ass” female bartenders.
In one tweet, Hall asked whether a whore can truly be a whore if no one hears her scream.
The governing New Democrats demanded Wednesday that Hall be dropped as a candidate.
“He refers to women as whores and skanks, among other terms. I don’t know when there’s ever an appropriate context for the use of those words,” NDP Health Minister Sharon Blady said.
“That’s something that should have been caught by the (Liberal) party in seeking to nominate him.”
Hall apologized for his words, but also defended them as humorous.
“My comments are my comments. And again — satire and sarcasm.”
Hall said some of the tweets were connected to the promotion of his novel. Another tweet in which he said “feminists are so sexist” was a quote from comedian Bill Maher, he added.
“I have countless friends that are women — my girlfriend, my mother, my sister, my grandmas who are no longer with me — and I am not by any means sexist.”
He said he might bow out of the race and would make a decision soon. Liberal party spokesman Mike Brown said the party had vetted Hall, but had not been aware of the tweets.
The Liberals have one legislature seat, but are hoping for a breakthrough in the April 19 election. Recent polls suggest their popularity has jumped as support for the NDP government has dropped.
Hall said the NDP should not criticize him because one of their own candidates has used similar language about women. Hall did not name the New Democrat.
Author and indigenous activist Wab Kinew, who is running for the NDP in Fort Rouge, has acknowledged writing misogynistic lyrics during his career as a rapper. Kinew has since apologized for his lyrics, both at a music awards ceremony and in his 2015 book “The Reason You Walk.”
“With the epidemic of violence against women, and indigenous women in particular, there is no excuse for this,” Kinew wrote.