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Liberal candidate resigns following controversial social media post

Last Updated Jan 17, 2019 at 12:07 am EDT

BURNABY (NEWS 1130) – The Liberal candidate who was slated to run in the upcoming by-election for Burnaby South has resigned.

Karen Wang has stepped aside following reports of a controversial social media post on WeChat, in which she urged her supporters to vote for her, “the only Chinese candidate in the running.”

In the post, she referred to NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, as “of Indian descent.”

Wang says she made comments online that referenced Singh’s cultural background and her choice of words wasn’t well-considered and didn’t reflect her intent.

She says she “sincerely” apologizes to Singh and has deep respect for him as the leader of his party and for his public service.

Alberta Conservative MP Michelle Rempel took to Twitter on Tuesday, calling on the Prime Minister to “turf” Wang, saying “Waking up in Calgary today I see that a woman who used blatant racism to campaign is still a candidate in Burnaby,” in one post.

Following her resignation, Wang says she believes in the progress that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Liberal team are making, and doesn’t wish for her comments to be a distraction.

In a statement, the Liberal Party says her recent comments “are not aligned with the values of the Liberal Party of Canada.”

“Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party of Canada have always stood for the full and equal participation of all Canadians in our democracy, regardless of their background,” it adds. “The Liberal Party has a clear commitment to positive politics and support for Canadian diversity, and the same is always expected of our candidates.”

A recent Mainstreet research poll found that the Burnaby South by by-election is a two-horse race between the NDP and the Liberals.

Singh is expected to hold a round table discussion this afternoon.