Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Nothing To Hide?

Remember when Liberal MP Marlene Jennings was accused of suspicious campaign expensions, she immediately went to the media, producing all documentation, to show no irregularities. The reason- everything was within the rules, no problem being forthcoming. Contrast that reaction, with former Conservative candidates being muzzled:
The three Nova Scotian Tory candidates who participated in the in-and-out scheme in the last election have all declined to be interviewed on the subject.

Elections Canada records show that the campaign of Rakesh Khosla, the Tory candidate in Halifax West, wired $11,841 to the national campaign on Dec. 31, 2005. His campaign was reimbursed for the same amount on Jan. 4, 2006.

Halifax candidate Andrew House’s campaign received $4,733 from the national party on Jan. 12. On Jan. 23, it sent the same amount back for an advertising purchase.

The campaign of Dartmouth candidate Robert A. Campbell, a former Mountie, wired $3,947 to the national party for advertising on Dec. 23, 2005, and received the same amount from the party on Jan. 9.

Contacted this week, all of the candidates declined to be interviewed on the subject.

More important the the court case, the court of public opinion. Surely, a wrong has been committed, these people did nothing untoward, we should see a concerted effort to clear the air. That's the reaction of people with nothing to hide, refusing to answer questions, hiding in the shadows, well that suggests something else.

The Conservatives will argue that, with the looming legal question, they have been advised not to speak. Strange that, considering Pierre and company have had no trouble laying out their legal case, hurling accusations at others, in public. What we have heard from the Conservatives constitutes the basis of their legal defence, which means there is no excuse to "muzzle" people, no excuse not to produce the documentation others have asked to see.

You can get lost in the noise of spin. Sometimes, the best way to get to the truth is observing the body language, the way in which parties react. A Liberal is accused, we see full disclosure immediately. A Conservative is accused, they are buried deep within the earth's mantle to avoid the cameras. That distinction tells us all we need to know. If you have nothing to hide, why then are you hiding? Strange.

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