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Kenney under fire for comments about NDP candidate

Last Updated Feb 3, 2019 at 2:58 pm MDT

Jason Kenney speaks to the media at his first convention as leader of the United Conservative Party in Red Deer, Alta., Sunday, May 6, 2018. Alberta Opposition Leader Kenney - who has made it his mission to bring civility back to political discourse - got called out himself today after he labelled Prime Minister Justin Trudeau empty and clueless.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

In a video filmed by a UCP youth supporter, Kenney appears to be mocking the NDP candidate.

The UCP spokesperson denies Kenney referring to Steve Durrell as a "gay 19-year-old".

ALBERTA (660 NEWS) — The UCP is on the defense over comments about an NDP candidate in Airdrie-Cochrane from their leader Jason Kenney that he made during a fundraiser.

In the 45 second Instagram story posted by the Director and Youth VP for UCP Airdrie-Cochrane, Kenney appears to mock NDP candidate for Airdrie-Cochrane Steve Durrell saying: “The NDP acclaimed their star candidate to take on Peter Guthrie, a [sic] 19-year-old [laughter].”

READ MORE: Kenney tells Notley to call Alberta election and stop campaigning on public dime

It’s unclear what word Kenney says before 19-year-old but a UCP spokesperson denies Kenney referred to Durrell as gay.

In an emailed statement from UCP spokesman Matt Solberg, he offers an explanation for the comments.

“Prior to the event, Jason was informed that the NDP candidate in the riding was 19. Clearly that was incorrect, and no offence was intended. He was simply highlighting the gulf of experience between the local United Conservative candidate Peter Guthrie, a long-time resident of Cochrane with a background in engineering, business and ranching, compared to the NDP’s acclaimed candidate…” Solberg stated.

Editor’s Note: The article has been updated to reflect the position of the person who posted the video.