Monday, April 19, 2010

"Enough Is Enough" Is Right

I don't mean to belabor the point, but when Committee gathers on Wednesday, expect to see brinksmanship from the NDP, expressing their passionate and principled opposition to this examination of the Guergis affair. For that reason alone, I think it important to review the words and rationale uttered by Pat Martin yesterday, because as you do, the magnitude of the seismic flip flop is even more apparent. Today it's "enough is enough", let the RCMP conduct its probe, there are no matters which Parliament need concern itself. Yesterday, on Question Period, wherein MP's don't freelance, they trump the party position:
Taber: "At the Commitee, what are you hoping to find out?"

Martin: "Well, were looking into the action of a former member of Parliament and a current member of Parliament, so I think it's fitting that a Parliamentary Committee of their peers review these actions. We're actually hoping that we can knock this thing off center stage somewhat by having the truth revealed... I think we're going to here, hopefully, the actors will feel comfortable enough to share their stories. Being at a Parliamentary Committee has its benefits, in that nothing you say there can be used against you subsequently in a court act. So, it is a safe format, a safe setting where people can share what really went on and hopefully as MP's tighten up the lobbyist rules if necessary. And, at least be fully aware of how this could have happened and why."

Taber: "What do you say to Mr. Brown that this should be in front of the RCMP and not before a Parliamentary Commitee?"

Martin "It is before the RCMP, in fact the difference between lobbying and influence peddling is about five years in prison. All the more reason why our Committee should be very very seized to this issue is because influence peddling is such a serious offence, its right up there with high crimes and misdemenours in the criminal code, right next to treason. It undermines the most fundamental tenets of democracy and Parliament (finger hitting table) should be very seized to this issue. If it's happening in our midst, we need to know about it and nip it in the bud. So, Patrick Brown should be aware that one Conservative on the Committeee voted for this motion and bring this before our Committee. It's fitting, it will be up the Chair to make sure it doesn't turn into a circus... We hope Mr. Jaffer and Miss Guergis see fit to share with us what really went on."

I actually had to go back and watch the Question Period video, because quite frankly I can't believe the bullshit I'm hearing today from the NDP. Yesterday, it's all about "fundamental tenets of democracy", how we should be "very, very seized" on this matter, if its "happening in our midst, we need to know" and "nip it in the bud" blah de blah blah blah. I understand that positions change over time, but from the above one day, to this pius "let's move along" nonsense today, oh come on.


Scotian said...

I know what you mean. When I first heard Martin say this today after watching him yesterday on QP saying the exact opposite I was floored. I mean really, he shows in his statements yesterday that he recognizes the Parliamentary immunity could make Jaffer more inclined to talk and he thought it was the best thing to have happen, and then today suddenly he is opposed because that could hinder the RCMP investigation, something he was just as aware of yesterday as he was today? Get real. I do not know why he flip-flopped so sharply and completely, but I am finding his stated reason for doing so too difficult to swallow.

It is not like he didn't understand this before when he was calling for Jaffer's presence, it is not like he didn't explicitly use the line of reasoning that Jaffer would be more likely to be open because of that immunity and how it could not be used against him later including by the RCMP, so what could it be that caused him to pull this?

It smells to me of something rotten, but what I do not know. My more paranoid side speculates/thinks it might be because he is realizing that the scandal is actually helping the Liberals more than the NDP wants to see happen thanks to the framing they have used, or that they don't want to see Harper weakened this much because they still see the Libs as enemy number one to this day, or even because suddenly Martin remembered some connection he has to Jaffer that could come out to embarrass him politically, who knows?

I sure don't, just that this makes no sense given his seniority in Parliament and understanding of how it works and his strong advocacy for Jaffer to testify up until today. All I am comfortable believing at this point is that his stated reason makes no sense upon examination, not when he clearly understood this point when he was advocating Jaffer's testimony at the committee as your post so clearly shows, and that really makes this look at the minimum weird and from my and my wife's perspective more than a little on the odious side because of that inability to buy into Martin's official stated rational today.

Something stinks here, good post Steve V.

CK said...

I watched that very same episode of Question Period as you all did.

I couldn't believe it myself, given the passion Martin showed on the tv screen.

However, there is a pattern with the NDP since 2004; anyone remember the NDP was willing to jump into bed with Brother Steve to form a coalition to topple the Paul Martin minority?

There are folks who come out and say Iggy is just a 'Harperlite', but do they stop and think of the NDP and how often they back the Harpercons? What about those backroom meetings between Jack and Brother Steve?

Surely they must be smart enough to know by now that they will never ever govern, unless in a coalition situation. Something tells me, they won't go into a coalition situation with Liberals...

Mark Francis said...

The NDP see 'advantage Liberal' in this scandal, so they want it off the main page.

Steve V said...


Sir Gallahad said...

Frank Graves is quoted in the Globe and Mail, as saying he understands why some of the opposition is getting cold feet about Jaffer/Guergis.

While not yet divulging any poll results, he is saying what he is finding is surprising him.

He seems to imply, that the public is turned off by the more sleazy aspects of this story.

That being said, the NDP does not surprise me. They stand for nothing but self preservation. They do not want to be squeezed out by the Liberals, ala 1993.

Their behaviour is typical NDP, hypocrisy.

When push comes to shove, they will support Harper right on down the line.

They are 100% responsible for Harper being PM, in the first place.

Northern PoV said...

Oh brave Sir Galahad...

From the playing footsie episodes with Harper in 04, to voting Martin's ill-fated gov't out, to creating a mid-election scandal that pushed Harper into power, to aiding and abetting the carbon-tax hysteria,
Layton and his band of miscreants have much to answer for.

But really, if you believe what you said:
"They are 100% responsible for Harper being PM, in the first place."

then we gonna be in opposition for a loooong time.

marie said...

Great post Steve. Nothing Layton and the NDp surprise me. Their goal is to buy more votes and become the official opposition and to hell with Canadains.

Layton is an opportunist a user and he is hoping people will feel sorry for him for having cancer and vote for them. Those of us who have had NDP Priemers know how they act and to be honest, they are no better than the current Reform,Alliance party at the helm.

News flash, we have seen through their shady dealings, know what they are capable of doing and know darn well that they have been in bed with the Cons from day one.

And to top it off again, they are still making deals with Harper.

And yes, they are responsible for having kept Harper in the PMo and that they will do it again.There is no doubt about that.

Two parasites sitting together planning their next shady move at the expense of Canadians.

If this is called politics for the people, they can have it.

Tof KW said...

But really, if you believe what you said:
"They are 100% responsible for Harper being PM, in the first place."

then we gonna be in opposition for a loooong time.

True no where near 100%, but Layton's NDP did sign a coalition deal with Harper, and was responsible for the Martin government's loss of a confidence vote. Harper's rise to power and continued presence has been aided and abetted to a large degree by Layton. And all for one reason, to eliminate the Liberal Party - the only thing the NDP and Reform party agree upon.