GlobalTV's lobster "carnage" story is now running on affiliate stations coast to coast
Carnage of another kind is happening for Vision Vancouver's Heather Deal as her series of boastful tweets about lavish taxpayer-funded meals and entertainment are now news across the country. While Deal was only one of several Vision councillors in attendance at FCM (others include George Chow, Raymond Louie, Tim Stevenson and Geoff Meggs, as well as Gregor Robertson & Chief of Staff Mike Magee) it's her social media updates from the conference banquet which are causing other Canadian elected officials to squirm.
As we shared on Monday, 24 Hours Vancouver reporter Erica Bulman discovered the councillor's unfortunate tweets from the Halifax FCM conference. The story was also covered by GlobalTV's Marisa Thomas, and even made it onto CTV on an evening without NHL playoffs to draw away audiences.
Several Vision Vancouver supporters ran to the defence of Deal, slamming media and CityCaucus.com for even reporting this story. For example, Jason Mogus of Communicopia Inc. (a company which donated $16,700 to Vision Vancouver's last campaign) commented:
"This discussion is rather ludicrous. When you go the East Coast, you eat lobster. It's cheaper than steak, and is the local custom."
Heather Deal, however, was more apologetic than her Vision backers, saying she regretted the fact many people were upset by her photos.
Mayor Robertson weighed into the controversy, saying that banquets at taxpayer-funded events are "to varying degrees of lavish," which most people had already figured out thanks to Deal's photos. Asked if receiving "swag" and chowing down right after a session on homelessness, Robertson responded that “It looks awkward.” Gregor also had another unique take on the Deal embarrassment – he claims the councillor was trying to be "transparent" by posting the shots on Twitter.
Deal shrugged off questions about the "swag" she boasted about receiving – a traditional Southwester hat – saying she would generously donate it to a homeless shelter. We're sure that some person down on their luck will appreciate having that bright yellow hat during Vancouver's many wet weather days.
The Halifax FCM story has even more interesting angles, which we'll cover here in a follow-up report.