The Conservative Party of Canada’s new communications director was supportive of the truckers who blocked streets in Ottawa this year, calling the constant blowing of protester horns, “Music to my ears!” in a social-media post.
That Jan. 28 posting by Sarah Fischer features a high-angle view of downtown Ottawa with a soundtrack of blaring horns and the text: “Horns have been honking for 8 hours straight! Music to my ears! #FreedomConvoy2022.”
Another posting features Ms. Fischer blasting the horn of a truck on an Ottawa street, and text in which she says there is no place in the world she would rather be than in downtown Ottawa.
“The energy is electric, people are hopeful and you can see smiling faces everywhere you look,” Ms. Fischer writes.
In a video posted to Instagram, Ms. Fischer walked the streets of downtown Ottawa talking into the camera while denouncing criticism of protesting truckers and accusing parliamentarians of lying about the truckers. “I love these trucks, love em, love em, love em,” she says, walking amongst trucks blocking Wellington Street in front of Parliament Hill. Police determined the protests were illegal and established exclusion zones in the city where people not allowed to protest.
Ms. Fischer announced her appointment to the party position on Twitter Monday, and it was later confirmed by the party.
“We will work to restore hope in a nation that will one day have a Prime Minister who will put people before politics and make Canada the freest country on earth! #Pierre4PM,” Ms. Fischer wrote.
Asked about her social-media posts, the Conservative Party responded with a statement from Michael Crase, executive director for the party.
“Ms. Fischer has been active with the Conservative Party of Canada for many years, serving both as a staffer on Parliament Hill and a candidate for our party in 2019. We are very excited for her to join our team,” said the statement.
In a tweet Monday night, Ms. Fischer rejected a call from another person tweeting to her to resign.
“I will NEVER apologize for Canadians’ right to protest,” she wrote.
Ms. Fischer’s LinkedIn profile indicates she graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 2012 after studies in political theory, comparative politics, leadership and business and government.
She was an executive assistant in the Senate for four years, a Conservative candidate in Don Valley North in 2019 – she won 35.4 per cent of the vote compared to 50 per cent for the Liberal candidate – and co-founder of a business called Mapleblume before serving for three years as a communications and policy adviser in Parliament until this month.
“The appointment of Sarah Fischer suggests that Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre will continue to use the Truckers Freedom Convoy as a touchstone of his policy,” pollster Nik Nanos, chief data scientist of Nanos Research as well as the official pollster for The Globe and Mail and CTV News, said in a statement.
“This has both benefits in mobilizing core supporters and risks at alienating other voters.”
NDP MP Matthew Green, the ethics critic, asked about Ms. Fischer and her postings, saying in a statement that “it was disappointing, but not surprising to see supporters of the convoy breaking the rules being welcomed with open arms by the Conservative Party.
“It shows very clearly where Pierre Poilievre and his party really stand.”
Mr. Poilievre, who represents a suburban and rural riding on the southwestern edge of Ottawa, was an early supporter of the trucker convoy that blocked key streets in the city’s downtown core for three weeks.
The protesters raised a range of grievances, but generally opposed government restrictions related to COVID-19.
In October, Mr. Poilievre said, in a radio interview, that there was no need for the federal government to invoke the federal Emergencies Act, an action now being assessed by an inquiry.
Instead, he said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau should have met with some of the truckers to listen to their concerns. “I think the whole thing would have come to an early end if he had done just that,” said Mr. Poilievre.
The Conservative Leader said the occupation in Ottawa was spurred by unnecessary COVID-19 mandates and anyone who broke the law should be condemned while peaceful protesters advocating for their livelihood should have been supported.