Ensemble Montréal leader Denis Coderre is once again on the side of a controversial candidate who is running for his party in the upcoming municipal elections.
Dan Kraft’s face is on election posters on every major Outremont thoroughfare, but some in the area are surprised that he is still running for city council on the Ensemble Montreal ballot.
“I can’t believe they quit,” Outremont resident Sarah Dorner said. “I can’t believe they considered him a candidate in the first place.”
Earlier this month, Kraft apologized for posting a link to a documentary denying climate change in September and for accusing a black man who questioned a traffic stop of seeking his 15 minutes of fame.
Coderre accepted the apology.
Ensemble Montréal candidate apologizes for controversial social media posts
“There will be no other chance if I witness that again from Mr. Kraft,” he said on October 8.
Now Kraft is creating controversy again.
Last week. In a now-deleted Instagram post, he compared Valérie Plante’s party, Projet Montréal, to Soviet dictator Josef Stalin. Stalin’s repressive regime is estimated to have killed one million people.
“My children are descendants of someone who fled the Soviet Communists as a refugee. It’s completely absurd and inappropriate, ”Dorner said.
Concordia professor Ted Rutland, who researches urban politics and the police, talks about the blog posts that Kraft wrote in Portuguese in 2020 that have now been made private.
Rutland says a post addressed George Floyd’s death at the hands of the police.
“It says that ‘George Floyd lived as a criminal and died as a criminal. You don’t deserve my flowers for being the victim of a police officer. I’d rather honor innocent victims, ‘”says Rutland.
When asked Monday if he still plans to keep Kraft on, Coderre said: “Of course.”
“We have a team, the team is there and the election is in less than two weeks,” he explained.
Plante criticizes Coderre for supporting controversial candidates
“Montréal’s need to know that this candidate exists with these perspectives. They need to think about why Dan Kraft has been welcomed and kept as part of the Ensemble Montreal party when he expresses these kinds of perspectives, ”said Rutland.
When contacted by phone, Kraft told Global News to speak with Ensemble Montréal party officials.
Ensemble Montréal later said it was not available for an interview.
In a statement, Projet Montréal expressed shock at Coderre’s defense of Kraft.
“It is particularly surprising that Mr. Coderre has decided to keep someone who makes racist, xenophobic and skeptical statements about climate change, when he keeps talking about the need to ‘live together’,” the party said.
The party accuses Coderre of downplaying Kraft’s unacceptable remarks.
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