Ex-Trump strategist Steve Bannon set to debate in Toronto despite pushback
American political strategist Steve Bannon is set to defend populism at a debate in Toronto Friday evening.
Critics have already called for a halt to the debate involving the former key aide to U.S. President Donald Trump.
Community groups and some federal and provincial politicians have raised concerns about the Friday event, at which Bannon will argue against conservative commentator David Frum about the role of populism in the future of politics.
They said giving Bannon a platform to express extreme views contributes to a climate of hatred that can encourage violence against marginalized or racialized groups.
Debate organizers defended the event, saying it would provide valuable analysis on a pressing issue.
Bannon, former executive chairman of right-wing Breitbart News, was chief strategist and senior counsellor to Trump until August 2017. He was recently dropped from the speakers list at the New Yorker Festival following intense backlash and threats of a boycott by other guests.
The event in front of a live audience is part of the Munk Debates series.
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