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Notley kicked out of Alberta legislature for comment on election watchdog firing

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley walks out of a meeting with Premier-Designate Jason Kenney in Edmonton on April 18, 2019. Alberta NDP opposition Leader Rachel Notley has been kicked out of the legislature chamber after refusing to apologize for her comments on Premier Jason Kenney's government firing the elections watchdog. Notley told the house that Government House Leader Jason Nixon was making misleading statements on why the UCP government was firing Lorne Gibson during Gibson's investigation of UCP fundraising misdeeds. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

EDMONTON — Alberta NDP Opposition Leader Rachel Notley has been kicked out of the legislature chamber after she refused to apologize for comments about the United Conservative government firing the province’s election watchdog.

Notley told the house that Government House Leader Jason Nixon was making misleading statements on why the government was firing Lorne Gibson during Gibson’s investigation of UCP fundraising misdeeds.

Legislature members have wide latitude to debate in the house, but rules don’t allow for allegations that one member is deliberately misleading or lying.

When Speaker Nathan Cooper directed Notley to apologize, she refused, saying bigger issues are stake and that legislation to fire Gibson is “corrupt.”

Cooper ejected Notley for the day, and she picked up her books and papers and walked out as colleagues pounded their desks in support.

Gibson has levelled more than $200,000 in fines surrounding rule-breaking linked to the 2017 United Conservative leadership race, which Jason Kenney won before he became premier this year.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 19, 2019.

The Canadian Press