Following up on a threat he made earlier this year, former Liberal leadership candidate Gerard Kennedy is suing the National Post:
(Toronto) Today, Former Liberal leadership candidate Gerard Kennedy commenced a libel suit against the National Post newspaper for false information in an article published earlier this year.
In his claim, Kennedy contends that columnist and editorial page editor Jonathan Kay made unfounded and defamatory allegations in his article, “National Security vs. Ethno Liberal Politics”, which ran in the February 27th edition of the National Post. The article alleged that Kennedy illegally traded future positions on national security policy for support in the Liberal leadership race.
“I believe untrue and odious allegations such as these need to be firmly contested. It represents a clear point of principle, notwithstanding the time and expense involved.” said Kennedy.
The suit seeks general damages of $1.5 million and $750,000 in punitive damages. Any award realized by the action after costs, will be donated to charities working to further understanding about diverse communities in Canada.
“I believe very strongly in the freedom of the press” said Kennedy, “But, that freedom only works well if it is not abused.”
A number of people in the Liberal party were named in the suit but Kennedy determined he was in the best position to clear the false allegations, stating, “Ultimately my name was on the campaign that is being maligned and that affects all of the hundreds of good people who were involved in that effort.”