The Ontario government removed MPP Roman Baber from the caucus after he publically censured his own government’s COVID-19 policies, Global News reported January 15.
In a letter to the Premier that he tweeted Friday morning at 6:16 AM, Baber said that the current lockdown model is “objectively deadlier than COVID,” demanding an end to the province-wide public health restrictions. To substantiate his allegation, included statistics about health issues — including cancer, overdose rates, and anxiety in children — as well as the local economy.
“The lockdown isn’t working. It’s causing an avalanche of suicides, overdoses, bankruptcies, divorces and takes an immense toll on our children,” wrote Baber, Progressive Conservative MPP for York Centre.
Premier Ford announced the expulsion of Baber in a statement: “Effective immediately, Mr. Baber will no longer be sitting as a member of the PC Caucus and will not be permitted to seek re-election as a PC member.”
At 9:34 AM, three hours after he posted the letter, Baber tweeted that he has been removed from the PC caucus, calling it “a regretful decision” but he himself does not regret “speaking out for millions of lives and livelihoods decimated by Public Health.” The letter to the Ford government was once again attached.
The Premiere said Baber’s assertions were “irresponsible” and undermined the efforts of frontline workers. He also criticized the MPP for politicizing the health crisis.
“There is no room for political ideology in our fight against COVID-19 — rather, our response has been and will always be driven by evidence and data,” Ford said.
While Baber acknowledges the existence and threat of the pathogen is “real,” he said “the fear of COVID is exaggerated.”
His letter included a table detailing fatality rates by age and said that of the 5,000 Ontarians who died from COVID in the last year, 3,000 had passed away in long-term care homes and were in their last year of life.
Baber insisted that the government should “focus on and fix” long-term care and said “only” 200 of the deaths were under age 60, with zero children dying of the virus in the province.
“While every death is tragic, after 10 months we learned that COVID is not nearly as deadly as first thought,” he said.
Baber also said that “Ontario’s hospital capacity is better than pre-pandemic,” which the Ford government counter with its own fact sheet of hospitalizations, ICU occupancy, and modelling projections, conducted by Dr. Adalsteinn Brown.
“Dr. Brown notes that if we stay on our current trajectory, there will be more than 1,000 COVID-19 patients in ICU by early February. That would be catastrophic,” the fact sheet stated.
Wiki Production Code: A0483