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From cautious discipline to denial and accusation: the Tory line on robo-calls

An Elections Canada worker checks a voter list at a Montreal polling station on May 2, 2011.

Graham Hughes/Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press

The Conservative Party's reaction to the robo-call controversy has evolved since the story first broke last week.

Here's what key Tories have said about the allegations of election mischief that have taken over the parliamentary agenda.

Thursday, Feb. 23: "The [Conservative]Party was not involved with these calls and if anyone on a local campaign was involved they will not play a role in a future campaign. Voter suppression is extremely serious and if anything improper occurred those responsible should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law." – Jenni Byrne, 2011 national campaign manager, in a statement

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Monday, Feb. 27: "If the NDP has any information that inappropriate calls were placed, and we certainly have information in some cases and we have given that to Elections Canada, then I challenge that party to produce that information and give it to Elections Canada." – Prime Minister Stephen Harper in the House of Commons.

Wednesday, Feb. 29: "The Conservative Party can say absolutely, definitively, it has no role in any of this. ... This is a smear campaign nine months after the election by the Liberals. This is why they continue to lose elections, it's a party that does not accept that it lost the election." – Mr. Harper in the House of Commons

"This is nothing but an unsubstantiated smear campaign on behalf of the NDP, and they should withdraw all their comments in this regard." – Dean Del Mastro, Conservative MP and parliamentary secretary to the Prime Minister, in the House of Commons

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About the Author
Parliamentary reporter

Daniel Leblanc studied political science at the University of Ottawa and journalism at Carleton University. He became a full-time reporter in 1998, first at the Ottawa Citizen and then in the Ottawa bureau of The Globe and Mail. More

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