The Parti Quebecois' candidate in Gouin is being accused of propagating an urban legend that, one Jewish group says, was originally drafted by the Ku Klux Klan.
The candidate, Louise Mailloux, has written in several publications that rabbis are raking in money by imposing a tax on food certified as kosher, and that the proceeds are being sent to fund religious fighters.
The centre for Israel and Jewish affairs says this is an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory that was created by the KKK and is being distributed by Neo-Nazi groups.
"We are extremely troubled by the candidacy of Louise Mailloux," says the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs. It says the candidate is contributing to unfounded resentment toward Jewish Quebecers and is calling on the PQ to reject Mailloux's declared beliefs.
"The absurd and profoundly defamatory statements of Louise Mailloux toward Quebec Jews is not befitting a major political party like the Parti Quebécois," it says.
The group says food producers and the company Metro have already declared during Bouchard-Taylor that the certification has no impact on their selling price, and that the certification does not include any type of blessing.
"In 1997, the Government of Canada refuted the conspiracy theory of 'the kosher tax' after citizens were encouraged by racist groups to demand tax deductions," says the groups.
Mailloux stands her ground
The candidate, Mailloux, has also compared baptism and circumcision to rape in her writings.
In an interview published yesterday, she told La Presse she "absolutely" still stands by her statement.
She also deflected the question of whether a "kosher tax" is paying for religious wars, saying that her aim now is to support the secularism charter.
Yesterday, a different Parti Quebecois candidate running in LaFontaine pulled out of the race after admitting to sharing an obscene photo of a shirtless woman that said "F___ Islam."