Thursday, December 29, 2005

My coffee bet may in trouble

Let me remind the faithful reader of my coffee bet. If, by the end of 2006, both the Conservatives and the Liberals have a new leader I will a coffee (hey big spender). If not, I have to buy the Java.

The assumption was that the Liberals would win a decreased minority, Stephen Harper would step down and the Liberals would force Paul Martin out. I am beginning to think I will be wrong on all three of those assumptions.

On the third one check out Lawrence Martin's column.

In a year-end interview, CTV's Mike Duffy asked Paul Martin whether he would be stepping down as leader of the Liberal Party if he did not win a majority in the coming election.
The Prime Minister parried the question while hunting for the right words. Then he spoke of the great future awaiting Canada and the big challenges of the changing world. Then he said, "I want to be there."
To those who think Mr. Martin will go quietly, his message was clear: Dream on. He is intent on leading the Liberals into a third campaign.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

I have investigated myself

and cleared myself of any wrong doing.

You have to give Peter Mansbridge credit. He tried, three times, to get an answer from Ralph Goodale as to why he is not resigning as Finance Minister. To no ones surprise Mr. Goodale would not answer the question directly. (here is the video of the interview in RealPlayer format, h/t SinisterThoughts)

...know I've examined my own conduct in this matter and I'm confident that conduct is consistent with 30 years of integrity and trust in public life

Shouldn't you know this kind of thing without having to examine it? Either you were involved in a leak or you were not. All that an examination does is show that you are worried that there might some evidence, somewhere, that might implicate you. I am not saying that Ralph Goodale is guilty of anything...well other than bad communication. Because innocent people do not examine their own conduct.

Update: The Conservative Party was kind enough to provide the Ministerial precedent information that Peter Mansbridge was referring to.

Greg Sorbara resigned as Ontario Finance Minister in 2005, after it was revealed that he was named in a warrant as part of an ongoing RCMP investigation. (CP, October 12, 2005)
Judy Sgro resigned as Minister of Citizenship and Immigration in order to clear her name, following additional allegations in January 2004. (Ottawa Citizen, January 15, 2004)
John van Dongen stepped aside as B.C.Â’s Fisheries Minister in January 2003 pending an investigation. The special prosecutor concluded no charges should be laid because there was no evidence of "criminal intent." Van Dongen was reappointed to the cabinet. (Vancouver Sun, January 20, 2004)
Rob Samson stepped aside as OntarioÂ’s Minister of Correction Services during an OPP investigation. When he was cleared of any wrongdoing in the release of information about young offenders at Cobourg's Brookside Youth Centre, Samson was returned to cabinet. (Press Release, Office of the Premier of Ontario, March 8, 2001)
Moe Sihota stepped aside as B.C.'s Education Minister to await the result of two probes into his conduct. (Ottawa Citizen, December 14, 1996)

Update: David Akin takes this post one step further by providing links.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

When will they ever learn

So what do I learn by watching Countdown tonight? That the Liberals are so broke that they are going to send their paid campaign staff back to their government jobs, from which they were on a leave of absense during the Christmas week off.

Yet again they are using taxpayer dollars to fuel their election campaign. As Alexa McDonough said on the panel, it proves they have learned nothing from the Sponsorship Scandal.

Update: All Things Canadian links to the video.

Here is the quote from Mike Duffy

...I've just been getting emails from the Liberal warroom that confirms what we've been hearing - all day long we've been hearing the buzz that Liberal campaign workers who are now on leave of absense from their government jobs are going to go back to work. That's right. When the campaigns shut down between the Christmas and New Years period a number of Liberal campagin workers who are now on leave of absense from government jobs are going back to the office to collect their government pay between Christmas and New Years. A move that will save the Liberal party the cost of paying their salaries over the Christmas period.

When we put that question to the Martin campaign they came back with an email tonight telling us the following:

"If certain people on the campaign do revert back to their government positions or are eligible to take paid vacation time and choose to do so, they are not permitted by our campaign to be engaged in campaign activities during that period.

The crux of the Sponsorship Scandal was that the Liberals confused the best interests of their party with the best interests of the country and used government money to benefit the party. This is no different.