, 02.28.2019 12:25 PM

#LavScam media roundup

  • John Ibbitson, Globe and Mail: “A prime minister who has been accused of such abuses by his own former attorney-general should no longer have the confidence of the House of Commons. This government should fall...Ms. Wilson-Raybould’s testimony Wednesday was so utterly damning that the Liberals no longer have a moral mandate to govern.
  • Elizabeth Renzetti, Globe and Mail: That Ms. Wilson-Raybould’s boss and his inner circle lacked the respect to listen to her “no” says volumes about the way that circle works. Or, if you prefer, for whom that circle works...Ms. Wilson-Raybould came out to quietly and methodically speak her truth, and exposed a structure that increasingly looks sleazy at its core.
  • John Ibbitson, Globe and Mail: “…the Prime Minister and his most senior advisers gravely undermined the rule of law when they repeatedly urged her as attorney-general to interfere in the criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin for partisan political reasons. To have then threatened her when she refused, and to have removed her from her portfolio when she would not bow to those threats, was reprehensible.”
  • Campbell Clark, Globe and Mail: That is clearly not the open and accountable government Mr. Trudeau promised. That’s trying to arrange the Prime Minister’s outcome behind closed doors, but keeping the accountability away.”
  • Editorial board, Globe and Mail: It is hard to exaggerate the seriousness of this. Her allegations go to the foundations of the Canadian justice system’s independence, and they rise to the highest levels of the government. They are all the more powerful because this accusation against the Trudeau government is being made by one of its most senior members.
  • Chantal Hébert, Toronto Star: The Liberals will likely go in the fall election campaign with the SNC-Lavalin albatross still hanging around their party’s neck...Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was already up to his neck in the SNC-Lavalin mess. On Wednesday, former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould pushed his head down further. It will be harder for the Liberal government to dig itself out of the deep hole she dug before the next campaign.”
  • Susan Delacourt, Toronto Star: “It is going to be impossible to look at Justin Trudeau’s government the same way again. Wilson-Raybould has presented that opposite image: a prime minister who made life very difficult for an Indigenous woman in his government, who was more than ready to embrace the hard cynicism of power. That image just doesn’t line up with the one Trudeau, or even his critics, have presented of this government so far. But it’s now a signature picture in the political history books.”
  • Editorial board, Toronto Star: “The former minister was a highly credible witness; her story will have to be countered with facts, not slogans, and certainly not with any attempt to discredit Wilson-Raybould. That was tried after the story first broke, and backfired badly…This isn’t going to be settled with a campaign-style battle of slogans that avoids the core issue raised by Wilson-Raybould: an attempt to inject nakedly partisan considerations into what should be an arms-length judicial decision.”
  • John Ivison, National Post: “Trudeau appointed as justice minister someone who said she is a “truth-teller,” an Indigenous person who said she has witnessed the consequences of the rule of law not being respected. He appointed her and then he tried to make her complicit in running roughshod over that law.”
  • Andrew Coyne, National Post: “It was clear from the first line of Jody Wilson-Raybould’s testimony: the Trudeau government is now officially in crisis, the jobs of several of its top officials hanging by a thread. What is revealed throughout is an attitude that appears to pervade this government: that the law is not an institution to be revered, but just another obstacle to get around, by whatever means necessary.”
  • John Ivison, National Post: “When she still failed to bend to his will, he removed her from her position as justice minister. If he thought she would respond to the “veiled threats” levelled against her, he clearly misread this woman.”
  • Christie Blatchford, National Post: “It sounded and felt like a death knell for the Liberal government of Justin Trudeau…”
  • Andrew Coyne, National Post: “It is nothing short of remarkable that, amid what she called this “barrage” of improper pressure, Wilson-Raybould stood her ground. Why didn’t she resign? Thank goodness she didn’t. She appears to have been one of the few people in this government with any principled belief in the rule of law. And in the end she did pay for it with her job, not once but twice.”
  • Christie Blatchford, National Post:
    As Jody Wilson-Raybould, the deposed federal justice minister and attorney-general, read aloud her opening statement at the justice committee Wednesday, with breathtaking clarity and intelligence, the room (and likely living rooms across the country) was still. Her revelations were so shocking that it left the government of “sunny ways” under a black cloud and Canada looking like a corrupt Third World banana republic. The stink so envelops the Prime Minister himself, many of his staffers, Finance Minister Bill Morneau and his chief of staff, and the Clerk of the Privy Council, Michael Wernick, that if they had a shred of integrity, which is very much in doubt, some if not all of them would resign.”
  • Editorial board, Toronto Sun: “This is not just sloppy messaging. This is not just a sign that the Liberals are too cozy with SNC-Lavalin. This is not just a sign that perhaps Trudeau is not as committed to running a clean ship as he’d previously pledged. This is a major red flag that Criminal Code violations concerning obstruction of justice have been broken.”
  • Brian Lilley, Sun Media: “Wilson-Raybould dropped a bomb on the Trudeau government with her testimony on Wednesday. What kind of damage she inflicted remains to be seen but it could be deadly.”


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    Miles Lunn says:

    Trudeau’s press conference yesterday was horrible. I remember Martin’s radio address back in 2005 after the explosive Jean Brault testimony at the Gomery inquiry and his seemed much better as at least Martin didn’t try to justify what happened although to be fair it was the Liberal party not him personally connected. Yes jobs matter, but so do ethics and basically Trudeau came across that certain companies are too big to fail so due to potential job losses we will hold them to a different standard. People like leaders who show humility, not ones that show arrogance. A great example of how to deal with something like this is Gordon Campbell’s DUI in Hawaii in 2003. He actually broke the law and in many ways that was worse than what Trudeau did, but when he owned up and apologized and didn’t try to make excuses his approval numbers went up and in fact in the 2005 election, the DUI was never brought up.

    Trudeau should have just taken the bulls by the horn and said it was a lapse of judgement here and that he didn’t understand the seriousness of this, but now realizes it and that he is sorry and takes full responsibility and will not let this happen again. Yes he would take a temporary hit in the polls, but most realize politicians are human and like all of us make mistakes we sometimes regret. Instead he came across that he is only sorry he got caught, not sorry what he did and the fact he tries to make excuses or deflect it just makes it worse. Taking full responsibility and a full apology would at least allow him to recover while digging in will just make it worse.

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      The Doctor says:

      You’re right, but most politicians don’t think that way. I think it comes from being so inside their respective partisan bubbles. Just think of Bill Clinton, for example, during Lewinskygate. He could have simply admitted what he did and apologized. But instead we got months and months of Ken Starr gong show idiocy and Bubba dancing on a rhetorical head of a pin, etc.

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      Gord Tulk says:

      But his problem- his existential threat – isn’t the interference with the justice process – it’s the pressure to bail out the crown jewel of the laurentian liberal mafia.

      If he doesn’t do that he’s toast.

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      Gord says:

      I agree. As many people have said ad nauseam, it’s not the crime, it’s the coverup.

      That said, the difference between Campbell and Trudeau is that Campbell’s DUI was seen as a single instance of an error in judgment, involving something that many people now regard as a health issue rather than a personal or moral failing. I don’t think people thought it reflected on his honesty, integrity or ability. Not so Trudeau, whose conduct has cast doubt on all three of those things.

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    Mike says:

    This is most definitely a case of a Prime Minister who has lost his moral and ethical compass in everything decent. As a life time liberal supporter, I say its time for the Prime Minister to resign immediately, and time for Ms. Wilson Raybould to be the next Prime Minister. In my riding, which is Tory held, but a winnable race for the Liberals, I really want to support the Liberal candidate (a future cabinet minister) but due to this scandal, feel forced to vote for the Green party now unless Trudeau steps down.

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      Stephen Sinclair says:

      I think this whole episode reveals the ugly truth that Trudeau has never had a working moral & ethical compass.

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      Gord Tulk says:

      This goes way beyond just JT – the LPC is owned by the laurentian cabal. JTs resignation doesn’t get SNC out of the glue so the problem doesn’t disappear.

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      Walter says:

      Maybe the problem is that Trudeau never had a moral compass to begin with. This is the man who charge charities tens of thousands of dollars for speaking engagements, while collecting an MP’s salary. He even charged mental health charities, from which his mother suffered.

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    Jim Keegan says:

    Holy crap, even the Toronto Star is piling on. I don’t see any way Trudeau is going to be able to squirm his way out of this steaming pile.

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      T. Quinn says:

      Why are the opposition parties not screaming for an election if its that bad?

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        Gord Tulk says:

        Because the cpc has set the precedent of fixed election dates – they don’t – and shouldn’t – break it.

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    Robert White says:

    A media filibuster and nothing more than that. Tempest in a tea cup if I ever evidenced one.

    PM is Teflon(tm)!


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      Walter says:

      PM is Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) – no TM required.

      Even that may not be enough this time.

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    PK says:

    Hard for me to imagine a piece of legislation passing without Harper’s approval.

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      Gord Tulk says:

      This wasn’t legislation. This was a court case.

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      Joseph says:

      Interesting point.
      Did you know that the office of public prosecutions was created as part of the Accountability Act.
      The Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC) is a federal government organization, created on December 12, 2006, when the Director of Public Prosecutions Act, Part 3 of the Federal Accountability Act, came into force.

      Ain’t that an interesting coincidence.

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    Sean says:

    More and more pundits are shaking their heads in regards to Trudeau’s responses to their questions. However given the uniqueness of his personality his response are perfectly consistent.

    1. Unable to admit wrong
    2. Blaming others
    3. Changing his story
    4. Projecting his own shortcomings onto his adversary
    5. Showing little anxiety when being confronted
    6. Vindictiveness
    7. Offering shallow explanations.
    8. Controlling
    9. Lying
    10. Condescending
    11. Blind to the opinions of others
    12. Lacking empathy.

    My guess is that Warren’s legal comments, which are appearing all over the place, must drive him wild.

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      Miles Lunn says:

      Bingo. And here when something like this happens is what leaders should do.

      1. Buck stops at the top, take responsibility
      2. Apologize and admit you made a mistake
      3. Promise never to do it again and put something in to prevent this.
      4. Mention that you are human being and like all imperfect, but you believe in learning from your mistakes and will strive to avoid them.
      5. Show humility
      6. Show you care about voters concerns and that you share their frustrations, make it about Canadians not yourself.
      7. Listen to others
      8. Promise to in the future seek advice from a wider circle and maybe shake up inner circle

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      Max says:

      Sean, you left out Justin’s desperate, Hail Mary – Blame the Boogeyman – Stephen Harper. He dug even further – “Stephan Harper only cares about the rich corporations”!!! Wow. Just wow. Is the definition of the word irony the same in French as it is in English? The Emperor has no clothes. And no one will tell him.

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    Janette says:

    JWR testimony has sealed the necessity for an RCMP investigation of the Prime Minister and his office and charges to follow under the criminal code of canada..we can all look the exact charges up and present them to the RCMP if they prove they dont want to and want to cover it up.

    We need to subpoena the RCMP Deputy Commissioner Michaud and rake him over the coals with very hard hitting questions. I could give a whole bunch of questions to ask. Im sure Warren Kinsella could ask the same questions I have.

    Very despicable when trolls try to attack JWR with racial slurs. She is a Canadian woman with courage and her courage kicks the crap out of the people she worked with in government.

    Anyone attacking JWR clearly are individuals who have no problem breaking the laws, circumventing the laws, criminally threatening an individual to break or circumvent the laws and who breach the public trust, obstruct justice and believe they are above the law.

    The RCMP have been put on notice by hundreds of thousand of Canadians to do their job and press charges because there is no way out of it for this present government and no way for you RCMP to circumvent the law and look the other way.

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    WestGuy says:

    I’m interested in who Telford had in mind when she said they would get some op-eds written that would support the decision to offer a DPA to SNC.

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      Ronald O'Dowd says:


      You mean you can’t guess? LOL.

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      Gord says:

      I suspect they rhyme with Shoronto Shmar and Shanadian Shmodcasting Shmorporation.

      Not that there’d be a lot of arm-twisting involved…

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    anonymous says:

    Rather amusing looking at the comments of people and a Mr. Ialanni states that JWR went against the PMO the Minister of Finance and the Privy and did not accept their advice.

    Then that is followed by a great comment by a poster who states the obvious that Jody Wilson Raybould is a lawyer and the PMO and the Minister of Finance and the Privy are not so why as a lawyer would she listen to them and go against the law.

    What a great way to silence the mouths of those who lack a brain to see the clear picture and love to wear blindfolds so as not to see the corruption and they try to make other people wear the blindfolds to cover the corruption.

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    Stephen Sinclair says:

    I think this whole episode reveals the ugly truth that Trudeau has never had a working moral & ethical compass.

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    Max says:

    I’m saddened, but not surprised, to learn today that polling indicates the Justin Liberals are down in every region of the country except Quebec and – where I come from – Atlantic Canada. Maybe Harper was on to something with that “culture of defeat” moment of honesty. While its clear that Liberals have shifted from “she can’t speak French”, to “Scott wants to be a ‘stay-at-home daddy in Nova Scotia’ while working for a Bank in Toronto”- to “Its JOBS! JOBS! JOBS!” – we know its about “VOTES!VOTES!VOTES!” AS Trump is to his base, Justin’s Liberals are to theirs. Will Quebec and Atlantic Canada be a big enough base? NB: Alberta is in need of jobs too. Wakey, Wakey Liberal Caucus. The Hangman is coming for breakfast.

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    Sam White says:

    Speaking of media roundup, was listening to Andrew Krystal’s show on Sirius when I was running errands.

    His take on this was that the CPC would not have done a thing differently, (which I do find believable) and that Trudeau’s biggest mistake was giving such an unqualified person like JWR the posting in the first place. As far as he’s concerned she is doing nothing more than grandstanding and trying to bring as many down around her as possible, and all the media attention is little more than hypocritical teeth gnashing & hand wringing.

    Since I know you’re an occasional guest on his show Warren, what’s your take on this?

    I’d love to hear you on his show discussing this very thing.

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      Vancouverois says:

      Sounds like it’s in line with the Liberals’ return to their policy of attacking JWR’s credibility.

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      Walter says:

      1st. It seems hard to believe that the ones (CPC) who brought in the anti-corruption law being discussed here would be the same ones who would have ignore it. If the CPC would have wanted some type of loophole in the legislation – they would have done it.

      2nd. Not clear why JWR would want to bring down those around her. She is obviously staying a Liberal, so what benefit is there for her to destroy her chances of being in government.

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        Vancouverois says:

        There *are* larger issues at play here. As she said, she’s well aware of what happens when governments ignore the law.

        As for her political career, it may keep her out of the current PM’s good graces – for as long as that matters, which may not be more than a few months. However, by standing firm she has established credibility with everyone except the most cult-like Trudeauites. There are plenty of people saying already that they’d be delighted to have her as PM herself. It may be an overreaction, but the sentiment is there.

        Whether she stays with the Liberal party as an MP, or joins/forms another party, or decides to pursue her aims outside of Parliament altogether, she has only added to her general stature in the long run.

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    T. Quinn says:

    “Some of the world’s biggest corporations — Siemens, Walmart, Alcoa, Daimler, Alcatel-Lucent — have negotiated (or are negotiating) deferred prosecution agreements with government prosecutors. Billions in fines have been paid, corporate reorganizations have taken place, but companies aren’t being dragged into court.”
    Terence Corocoran in the nat. post

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      Ronald O'Dowd says:


      Completely irrelevant. The Minister made her decision. That should have been the end of it. Period. And because they refuse to stand down, they can kiss off Ontario and BC…

      Note how cabinet is not legislatively mandated to reverse her decision.

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    Mark D says:

    Not a good week for national political leaders in North America whose last name begins with T-R-U. Especially as it pertains to alleged direction given to their former lawyer.

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    not 1st says:

    The most disturbing thing about the whole testimony was this statement from Telford as recounted by JWR;

    Wilson-Raybould said the pressure escalated later that month with contacts from PMO officials. Butts and Trudeau’s chief of staff Katie Telford “summoned” Prince to a Dec. 18 meeting, saying the situation was getting worse and that they felt she wasn’t doing anything.
    According to Wilson-Raybould’s testimony, Telford suggested they could line up people to write op-eds to say what she is doing is “proper.”

    The fact that they were confident they could also strong arm the media to go along says a lot. Thankfully there are one or two principled journalists still out there. What else has the media been complacent about?

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      Chris says:

      How about Omnibus Bills. The media (and the then Liberals in opposition) were aghast and outraged about Harper’s bills and their threat to democracy. Have not heard a discouraging word about Trudean Liberal omnibus bills.

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        Ronald O'Dowd says:



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        Vancouverois says:

        It *has* been pointed out. I think it’s just been mostly lost against the background of the larger scandal. But people HAVE noticed.

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    Vancouverois says:

    Richard Martineau, in Le Journal de Montreal:


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    Walter says:

    This is especially bad considering the Liberals just announced a $595M bailout for the media, and Trudeau appointees would be the one who determine which media are deserving of a part of the money.

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