Canada column for Sunday, Aug. 30/15
THE CANADIAN REPORT
(c) By Jim Fox
Conservative leader Stephen Harper, seeking to be returned as the prime minister in the Oct. 19 federal election, had beefed up his security detail.
Along with the Mounties who are assigned for his personal protection, the Conservatives are also using former members of the Canadian military to act as security during campaign stops.
Security expert Chris Mathers, a former undercover Mountie, said the private security officers are likely there to deal with “uninvited guests” and to keep the peace at events.
Conservative spokesman Kory Teneycke said “we don’t talk about it” when asked about the additional security contingent.
“The whole point about having security at these things to is try to avoid somebody else who has their own agenda ... destabilizing the agenda that you have,” said Alex Marland, a political science professor at Memorial University.
This happened on Thursday when a man was escorted out of the room when he tried to join journalists asking Harper a question in suburban Toronto.
The Mounties are providing security for New Democratic Party Leader Tom Mulcair and Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau but they have not hired additional security.