A group may be designated as a terrorist entity if there are "reasonable grounds" to believe it has "knowingly carried out, attempted to carry out, participated in or facilitated a terrorist activity", according to Section 83.05 of the Criminal Code.
Blair on Wednesday repeatedly denied any political influence in the decision to list the Proud Boys and three other right-wing extremist organizations, which officials have lumped under the catch-all term "ideologically motivated violent extremist groups".
Canada is the first country to designate them as a terrorist entity.
The US Justice Department arrested and charged a top member of the Seattle chapter of the far-right Proud Boys group on Wednesday over allegations he had a role in the storming of the US Capitol on Jan 6 by pro-Trump followers. The listing is then published if the cabinet agrees with the recommendation.
"There is right-wing extremism in Canada but much, much less than in the U.S.". However, the group's assets and property are effectively frozen and subject to seizure or forfeiture.
The remaining listed entities are affiliates of Al-Qaeda or the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria group, as well as the militant Kashmiri liberation group Hizbul Mujahideen.
But some rights' groups in Canada say listing the Proud Boys as a terrorist entity could broaden the definition of terrorism to the point of endangering protest and free speech rights.
"There has been a growing body of evidence. of the escalation of violence that this group has been involved in", he said, noting that Canadian authorities have been monitoring the Proud Boys since 2018. "All the Canadian Proud Boys have ever done is go to rallies", Tarrio said in a phone interview. "We have seen the type of tragic results that this kind of extremism can bring to Canada". "Are we actually dealing with the underlying ideology of white supremacy by doing this?"
The listing will likely have "a bit of a polarizing response" on Proud Boys members, said Jessica Davis, a former senior intelligence analyst with the Canadian Security Intelligence Service spy agency.
The National Council of Canadian Muslims as well as the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs were among those welcoming the addition of the four right-wing extremist groups on Wednesday.
The group's profile was raised in September when former United States president Donald Trump, asked in an election debate if he would denounce white supremacists and militia groups, called on the Proud Boys to "stand back and stand by".
He said Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and opposition New Democrat leader Jagmeet Singh, who first proposed the designation, are virtue signalling.
"They have been historically used to marginalize, unjustly, some of the people that are most marginalized, and that is a real critique that's been raised by a number of human rights groups and civil rights groups", he said.
And when it comes whether social justice groups should be concerned they might one day fall under a government terrorist designation, Balgord said: "We just always got to keep an eye on it, any time we're talking about terrorism or security stuff".
- with files from James McCarten in Washington, D.C.