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Scheer thought MP’s sexting “an isolated incident”

Scheer thought MP's sexting "an isolated incident"

Published on: November 8, 2018 | Last Updated: November 8, 2018 4:28 PM EST

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer speaks in Brampton, Ont. on Thursday. (Jack Boland/Toronto Sun)

MP Tony Clement’s revelation he had reported a sexting-related extortion attempt to police in the summer came as news to him, PC Leader Andrew Scheer says. “I just found out about the incident this summer moments ago,” Scheer said Thursday, during an anti-crime announcement in Brampton. “I was not aware of that until today.”

Scheer said he had been under the impression from Clement that there was one isolated incident in which the former PC MP sent explicit images and video to a stranger. Later, it became apparent that there was evidence of a pattern of inappropriate behaviour, he said. On Thursday, Clement posted an apology to his constituents in which he acknowledged multiple infidelities and two extortion attempts, one of which he reported to police in the summer. Scheer said he did not discuss with Clement whether his work in national security was compromised by the incidents.

“Not only were we not aware of this but neither were the National Security Agencies who did the screening for Mr. Clement before he took his place on the National Security Council,” he said. “So people are capable of having lapses of judgement, unexpected lapses of judgement, people make mistakes.” Scheer said PC members hold each other to the highest standards but “these types of things” can happen in any profession or political party. He did not see a need to change policies. “I don’t think too many people need to be told that it’s inappropriate to send explicit photos and videos to people you’ve never met,” he said.

aartuso@postmedia.com
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