|Don Meredith, appointed to the Senate by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2010, |
has been kicked out of the Conservative caucus, CBC News has confirmed.
The development comes as the Toronto Star reported Wednesday night that an 18-year-old woman alleged she had an inappropriate sexual relationship with Meredith, which began when she was 16.
The teen told the Star the relationship began with chats online that became suggestive in nature, and progressed to include sexual intimacy, including intercourse after she turned 18.
The Criminal Code defines the age of consent in Canada as 18 if sexual activity occurs in a relationship of authority, trust or dependency.
Meredith, 50, is an ordained minister at a Pentecostal church in Vaughan, Ont. He ran unsuccessfully for the Tories in Toronto Centre in a 2008 byelection.
The Senate confirmed last week it had undertaken a workplace review in February amid rumours of harassment and bullying in Meredith's office. No formal complaint was made.
The concerns related to at least four employees.
This unfortunate situation adds to a long list of disastrous Senate appointments by Prime Minister Stephen Harper. They include extravagant expense claims, security breaches, and now child sex abuse. Mr Harper needs to revisit his method of appointing Senators. He has been a proponent of electing Senators, an idea that has not caught-on, but his own appointments are his best argument for that idea.