Candidate chaos: Sault Liberals reject lawyer, then remove high schooler who was acclaimed

A lawyer from Sault Ste. Marie says she will be running as an independent in the provincial election, after she was rejected by the Ontario Liberals.

Naomi Sayers is an experienced lawyer who has been called to the bar in both Ontario and Alberta. Sayers wanted to run for the Liberals as their Sault candidate, because she said the north lacks strong voices in Queen's Park.

However, she was rejected for the candidacy and was told she uses her social media "too often." Sayers has also been open about her past as an exotic dancer.

"They also didn't really say they were going to finish the process, so it was more like, you gave us too much information and we're not going to proceed," Sayers said.

"It's kind of counterintuitive to the vetting process. I was very open, honest and transparent in terms of what there is about me and what may be a relevant issue, which is what the assessment looks into."

For their part, the Liberals did not confirm the reasons why Sayers had been rejected.

Reports surfaced Monday night that 18-year-old high school student Aidan Kallioinen of Espanola had been acclaimed as the party's candidate. But in less than 24 hours, the Liberal party has removed him.

"Mr. Kallioinen is no longer running for us as a candidate in the Sault," read a statement from press secretary Andrea Ernesaks.

No reason has been given why he was removed as the candidate.

After being passed up for a high school student who is not from Sault Ste. Marie, Sayers said she is running as an independent.

"A lot of people who supported me, they told me they didn't want to support the Liberal party," said Naomi Sayers.

"These people were honest to me about why they couldn't support me and I felt that I took it this far and let's just continue."