In an interview with iPolitics, the Conservative MP decides he is both an NDP insider and a doctor.
“I actually think one of the great stories that was missed by journalists was that Mr. Mulcair, with his arm twisted behind the scenes, helped to hasten Jack Layton’s death,” he said. “It was very clear to me watching the two of those gentlemen in the front benches, that Jack Layton was ill and that Mr. Mulcair was making it quite obvious that if Jack wasn’t well enough to fight the campaign and fight the election that he should step aside, and that because of that, Mr. Layton put his life at risk to go into the national election, and fight it, and did obviously an amazing job considering his state of health, and that he did that partly because of the arm-twisting behind the scenes by Mulcair and then subsequently died.”
Question: So you think that if that hadn’t existed, Layton would have taken a back seat, rested in some way? “He would have taken more heed of his health. He might not have rushed into that election campaign with somebody with a knife in his back.”
Unless Mr. Anders knows something we don’t, the known timeline is as follows: Jack Layton was diagnosed with prostate cancer in February 2010. He underwent hip surgery to repair a small fracture on March 4, 2011. Three weeks later, in the lead-up to the 2011 election, he pronounced himself fit for a campaign and said his PSA level was “virtually at an undetectable level.” He proceeded with that campaign and seemed to improve as it went on. The vote was held on May 2. In late June 2011, he began to feel sore and stiff (see this story for details). On July 20, 2011, he was diagnosed with a new form of cancer.
The Prime Minister’s spokesman says Mr. Anders’ comments do not reflect the opinion of the Prime Minister or the Harper government.
Update 12:35pm. And here is the apology.