Nanaimo-Alberni MP James Lunney showed reporters a Harvard University video about nanotechnology before his news conference on Thursday.

Nanaimo-Alberni MP James Lunney showed reporters a Harvard University video about nanotechnology before his news conference on Thursday.

MP Lunney fires back, then retreats

Embattled MP for Nanaimo-Alberni quickly left his own news conference with reporters still asking him questions

James Lunney came out swinging against his critics last week before hastily leaving his news conference with reporters still firing questions.

The independent MP for Alberni-Courtenay — he left the Conservative caucus two weeks ago — told reporters “militant atheists” are behind attacks on Christian politicians.

Lunney’s retreat from the government benches was spurred by a Twitter posting in February and the ensuing fallout, a tweet in which Lunney said: “No problem with ‘scientific theory’. Just stop calling evolution fact.”

He blamed media and so-called online “trolls” for the controversy and continued that theme at his Nananimo constituency office on Thursday. He began the news conference by showing an eight-minute video about nanotechnology produced at, he said, Harvard University. He suggested some link between the contents of the video and theories surrounding the debate about evolution and creation.

“This is why evolution is a theory,” he said, pointing to the video. “This is Harvard teaching children — this isn’t James Lunney’s beliefs.”

Lunney refused to answer direct questions about his views on creation and/or evolution. He also wouldn’t answer a question about whether other leading politicians like Prime Minister Stephen Harper or Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, also Christians, were also under attack.

Lunney also said he wanted to know who was behind the campaign against him.

“My question is: who is funding the campaign by militant atheists to discredit a Christian world view in Canada?”

After about 20 minutes, half of which included Lunney’s prepared statement that included what he thought the media’s role should be regarding this issue, Lunney seemed frustrated with the line of questions and retreated to the back offices, refusing to answer any more questions.

Before he left the news conference that he instigated, Lunney said he believed his job as MP involved more than constituency work and he said his views are backed by many in this country.

“I’m telling you millions of Canadians believe God is the creator,” he said.

Lunney has said he will not be running in this year’s federal election.