PC campaign director sues former Ford ally for defamation
After months of being accused of corrupting the party from within, PC Party campaign director Kory Teneycke has slapped Premier Doug Ford’s former ally Charles McVety with a lawsuit.
On Tuesday, Teneycke and his lobbying firm, Rubicon Strategy, sued McVety for defamation, alleging the outspoken evangelist and conservative activist has, on multiple occasions, tried to impugn his integrity, embarrass him and lower his professional and personal reputation.
Teneycke — who retained the services of prominent law firm Henein Hutchison LLP — is seeking $3 million in damages, plus legal fees, as well as an injunction requiring McVety to remove all allegedly defamatory statements about him from the web.
“Mr. McVety is about to learn that defamation can be very expensive,” Teneycke told Queen’s Park Today by text message yesterday.
McVety was not yet aware he was being sued by Teneycke when reached for comment.
Teneycke’s statement of claim takes issue with McVety’s allegation that the “real reason” the PCs implemented a vaccine passport is because Rubicon consultants have been hired to lobby the province on behalf of AstraZeneca and Innovative Medicines Canada, an industry group that represents multiple pharmaceutical companies, including Pfizer.
Court documents obtained by Queen’s Park Today single out a web page McVety created about the campaign director. In both text and an embedded video of McVety’s speeches, the page repeatedly links Teneycke to PC policies, such as vaccine passports, that are “stripping away basic freedoms” for unvaccinated Ontarians.
“Is it right for Kory to be intimately involved with PC Party decision-making while his company profits and Ontarians suffer?” asks the web page.
Rubicon represents certain pharmaceutical companies, “but not in relation to any matter related to COVID-19 vaccines,” per the statement of claim.
McVety is using “innuendo” to make claims that are “false and defamatory” and lack evidence and credibility, the legal filing states.
It goes on to tie the evangelical preacher’s vendetta against Teneycke to the government’s May decision to heed the Postsecondary Education Quality Assessment Board’s recommendation and deny CCC degree-granting status.
“Mr. McVety made these false statements out of malice against Mr. Teneycke and Rubicon as evidenced by his linkage of the smear campaign with his complaints about the Ontario government’s refusal to designate the College, Mr. McVety’s personal business, as a university,” reads the statement of claim.
The lawsuit also points to a press conference McVety gave in the Queen’s Park media studio on October 5, where he called Teneycke “immoral” and alleged he was “benefitting to untold amounts” by influencing the PCs on behalf of his firm’s pharmaceutical clients.
These “defamatory statements” were “a deliberate attempt” to damage Teneycke and Rubicon’s professional reputations, lawyers Scott Hutchison and Jennifer Brevorka wrote in the statement of claim.
McVety did not provide a response to Queen’s Park Today about the allegations. No date for a hearing has been set.
During a seminar he hosted earlier this month, which included an appearance by the premier’s daughter, McVety also accused Teneycke of edging out Christian candidates from PC nomination races.
For his part, Teneycke has called McVety a “conspiracy theorist” and compared him to Alex Jones.
In June, Canada Christian College launched an application for a judicial review of PEQAB’s recommendation against giving it university degree-granting privileges and Ross Romano, then-minister of universities and colleges, for agreeing to that recommendation. McVety has threatened to “depose” Teneycke during those hearings.