For the second day in a row, Conservative candidate Joe Oliver has cancelled plans to speak to a private club in his role as finance minister.
Mr. Oliver was scheduled to deliver a speech Wednesday in his capacity as finance minister on "the future of the Canadian economy" to a private men's club.
A receptionist at the Cambridge Club confirmed Wednesday morning that Mr. Oliver was expected to attend the event at noon. However after the Liberal party criticized the event online, the club later said around 10:45 a.m. that the event had been cancelled.
Opposition critics have long been urging Mr. Oliver to provide an update on the state of federal finances in light of all of the economic developments that have taken place since the last federal budget was released on April 21. The NDP and the Liberals say any speeches Mr. Oliver plans to deliver on the economy should be made in public rather than to private clubs.
The Toronto club promotes itself as a place "for the Bay Street Boys." The Cambridge Club's website describes the event as a sold out presentation and cocktail luncheon with "Finance Minister Joe Oliver." Attendance is limited to members and guests only.
Toronto Liberal candidates had planned to attend the event.
A spokesperson for Mr. Oliver's campaign declined to say why Wednesday's event was cancelled.
"Joe Oliver speaks to many groups, organizations and individuals in many places on a variety of topics, including the economy, security and leadership," said the spokesperson in a statement. "He will continue to to knock on doors and talk to people in his community of Eglinton-Lawrence about our low tax plan for jobs and growth."
The event comes a day after Mr. Oliver's campaign told The Globe and Mail that it had cancelled a similar event scheduled for Sept. 1 at Toronto's private Albany Club.
The Albany Club continues to promote a Sept. 1 event that would feature the Finance Minister delivering a speech called "Back to Balance Canada's Economic Picture." The event is listed as off-the-record, meaning it could not be reported on by the media. The club, which is billed as the place "where Canada's conservatives connect," did not respond to questions about the event.
The Globe first asked Mr. Oliver's campaign about the Albany Club event on Monday. A spokesperson responded late Tuesday afternoon to say that the event was scheduled before the campaign began and has since been cancelled. The spokesperson would not say when it had been cancelled.
Sept. 1 is the same day that Statistics Canada will release its Gross Domestic Product figures for the month of June. The release will show whether Canada met the technical definition of a recession with two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth. Canadian GDP growth has been negative for the first five months of the year.
A profile of the Cambridge Club in the Financial Post this year said Mr. Oliver, who spent most of his career on Bay Street, first joined the club when it opened in 1973.
The article described the club as being "every inch a masculine refuge" with bound volumes of Playboy magazine filling most of one shelf.
One member described the club in the article as "one of the last bastions of manhood."