Saskatchewan. Party refuses to deny MPs attended Unified Grassroots event

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The group opposed to vaccination mandates says anonymous MPs and MPs from Saskatchewan attended an online meeting.

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The Saskatchewan Party government has declined to confirm or deny whether any of its MPs attended an online meeting hosted by the Unified Grassroots group.

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Unified Grassroots, which opposes vaccination mandates, held a Zoom meeting on Monday attended by “several” unnamed MPs and MPs from Saskatchewan, along with some from other provinces, the group claims on its website.

Prime Minister Scott Moe came under fire last month after Unified Grassroots leader Nadine Ness revealed in an online video that he spoke to her on the phone. The group unsuccessfully challenged in court evidence of the province’s vaccination requirements.

MPs are receiving invitations to many events and meetings, and throughout the pandemic, government MPs have spoken with many residents of the province who have concerns and questions about the government’s response and actions,” said Moe’s publicist, Julie Leggott, in an emailed statement on Friday. “I am unable to comment on reports of anonymous individuals attending a reception.”

NDP opposition spokesman Brock Bowman said in an emailed statement that none of the party’s MPs were invited to the event and none attended.

The event was hosted by Dr. Francis Christian, a former Saskatchewan Health Authority executive whose contract was terminated last year after he appeared in a video questioning the severity of the pandemic and the effectiveness of vaccines.

Christian, also a professor of surgery at the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine, was also suspended from his academic responsibilities pending a review of his behavior.

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The video features Dr Peter McCullough, an American cardiologist who has come under fire for his claims about the pandemic, including that it was planned and that vaccines are ineffective.

Christian says McCullough appeared on Joe Rogan’s podcast, which has come under fire for airing false and unproven claims about the pandemic.

The Unified Grassroots video was posted on Rumble, a right-wing platform known for hosting videos containing misinformation and conspiracy theories about the pandemic. Rumble’s counter said the video had been viewed 9,469 times on Friday afternoon.

Previous Unified Grassroots videos featuring Ness have been posted on YouTube, which has a policy prohibiting content containing misinformation about COVID-19.

Leggott said the province encourages people to seek out “valid” sources of information about COVID-19 and vaccines, including the government’s COVID-19 website and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

The government and its deputies undertook extensive efforts to counter misinformation regarding COVID-19 “and provide factual information about the threat of the virus and the benefits of vaccines,” Leggott’s statement read.

On Friday, Ness tweeted that the mainstream media “is the real enemy of the people!!”, borrowing a line from former US President Donald Trump.

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  1. Signage inside a doorway on the University of Saskatchewan campus in Saskatoon, SK on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.

    U of S surgery professor questions COVID-19 and vaccines in online video

  2. Dr. Francis Christian, professor of surgery at the University of Saskatchewan, speaks at a press conference outside Walter Murray Collegiate for a group called Concerned Parents Saskatchewan to address their issues with vaccinated students at Saskatoon, Thursday, June 17, 2021. Dr. Chong Wong, also seen in this photo, also teaches at the University of Saskatchewan.  Kayle Neis/`Saskatoon StarPhoenix

    Saskatoon surgery professor suspended, fired from key roles

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