Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer has fired two of his leading aides this weekend, because he “felt it was important to make changes” after the election. After losing the federal election back in October, and subsequently facing calls from his own party to step-down as leader, Andrew Scheer has now fired two of his “friends,” including his communications director.
After initially facing calls to step-down as Conservative Party leader, Andrew Scheer has now taken action to reshuffle his team, first by firing his Chief of staff and his communications director.
According to CBC News, the party leader sent an email to his staff on Saturday night, explaining his decision to fire Chief of staff, Marc-André Leclerc and communications director, Brock Harrison.
"Following the election results, and as we gear up to hold Justin Trudeau to account in this new minority Parliament, I felt it was important to make changes at the Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition," Scheer said in the email.
While he did not specify any reasons for the seemingly abrupt dismissals, they come as the party wrestles with the aftermath of what many see as a disappointing election outcome.
Despite winning the popular vote in October's election, the Conservatives were unable to make the necessary electoral gains in Quebec and Ontario.
At the time, many Conservative supporters expressed that this was disappointing to them, particularly after Justin Trudeau's blackface scandal threatened to affect the Liberal support.
CBC News reports that multiple Conservative sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the two men were told of the decision on Thursday night.
The sources told CBC that Scheer informed the men personally that they were to be fired and told them they wouldn’t be allowed to resign.
"These decisions are never easy, especially when they involve friends," Scheer wrote in the email.
"I wish them nothing but the best in all of their future endeavours," he said.
The re-shuffling of Scheer's team follows several calls for the party leader to step down in October after the Conservatives failed to gain seats in the necessary ridings.
In the weeks following the election, Scheer told Canadians that he would not be stepping away from his position, saying, "I am staying as leader of the party. The Conservative movement remains exceptionally strong and motivated."
In a tweet on Saturday, Leclerc wrote, "Today, after ten years, I am retiring from federal politics. I want to thank Mr. Scheer for his trust and the opportunity to play a major role."
Harrison shared a similar message to Facebook, confirming his departure from the Conservative Party and adding, "It was a short, intense, and life-changing experience."
Today, after ten years, I am retiring from federal politics. I want to thank Mr. Scheer for his trust and the oppor… https://t.co/4R6eFIRIIU— Marc-André Leclerc (@Marc-André Leclerc) 1574525087.0
Martin Bélanger will act as Chief of staff and Simon Jefferies as director of communications until permanent replacements are found.