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Greens will debate on TV or in courtroom

Federal Green party Leader Elizabeth May is determined to have her way.

Federal Green party Leader Elizabeth May is determined to have her way.

Whether by stirring up public outrage or taking action through the courts, May is challenging the television networks that snubbed her from an upcoming election leaders’ debate head-on.

“The airwaves are not the private domain of the media consortium,” May said during a press conference in Vancouver. “I’m shocked by this decision. Because of a programming decision, they’ve decided that the Greens should not be at the debate.”

The Saanich-Gulf Islands candidate is hoping public outcry will be enough to have broadcasters change their mind, but is willing to take her fight to court if need be.

“It’s anti-democratic. Almost one million people voted for us in the last election,” she said.

“What’s at stake here are not the fortunes of the Green party, but whether Canada has a full, healthy, modern democracy.”

The party has hired a charter rights lawyer to argue its case.

“We’re seeing a groundswell but if we have to, we can get to court on an emergency basis to get a ruling before the debate takes place,” said May. “We are in a very tight spot in defending democracy. If we don’t see a reversal, we will be forced to go to court.”

A date for the televised leaders’ debate has not yet been set.

 
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