A young man who wanted to become the next Liberal candidate in an Ontario riding has dropped out of the race, saying Grit Leader Justin Trudeau broke a "key promise" to his party.
Zach Paikin, 22, said Trudeau blocked the candidacy of Christine Innes in the Toronto riding of Trinity-Spadina, which went against a promise to hold open nominations.
Innes, the wife of former Liberal cabinet minister Tony Ianno, was told last week she could not run because of her team's use of "intimidation and bullying" in trying to get supporters away from newly-elected Toronto Centre MP Chrystia Freeland.
Paikin, the son of TVO journalist Steve Paikin, was running in the riding of Hamilton West Ancaster Dundas, but wrote on his campaign Facebook page Monday night that he could not "in good conscience, campaign to be a part of a team of candidates if others seeking to join that team are prevented from doing so if their ideas or ambitions run contrary to the party leader's interest."
He added, "Blocking nomination bids is what creates the party-wide toxicity we seek to avoid."
He said he does not want to see Trudeau become consumed with gaining power.
"(Prime Minister) Stephen Harper is 'Exhibit A' of what happens when a leader compromises on his democratic principles in order to win power. I feel it important to speak up as forcefully as I can so that the party I care about doesn't go down the same road," he said.