Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has rejected the official oppositions request to resign while an RCMP investigation occurs into the government’s alleged pressuring of the former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould.
That decision selfishly taken by the PM is a serious problem for our democracy, our faith in our institutions, and our standing on the world stage.
According to the statement released by Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer:
“The testimony Canadians have just heard from the former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould tells the story of a Prime Minister who has lost the moral authority to govern. A Prime Minister who allows his partisan political motivations to overrule his duty to uphold the rule of law. A Prime Minister who doesn’t know where the Liberal Party ends and where the Government of Canada begins. And a Prime Minister who has allowed a systemic culture of corruption to take root in his office and those of his most senior cabinet and public service colleagues.Andrew Scheer
“Before Ms. Wilson-Raybould’s testimony, Canadians knew Justin Trudeau had engineered an unwanted, sustained, and co-ordinated attempt to get Ms. Wilson-Raybould to change her mind and stop the criminal trial of SNC-Lavalin. Today, thanks to Ms. Wilson-Raybould’s testimony, we now know just how intense those efforts were: ten meetings and ten phone calls involving eleven senior government officials relentlessly targeting Ms. Wilson-Raybould over a four month period – with the sole objective of bullying her into bending the law to benefit a well-connected corporation.Andrew Scheer
The NDP leader has been more lukewarm, but he too has
Perhaps most interesting though, according to Jody Wilson-Raybould, much like the Saturday Night Massacre which led to the downfall of Nixon, the Liberals here were incentivized by the need to protect their re-election chances in key Quebec ridings, such as the riding of the Prime Minister in Montreal.
The allegations of multiple incidents of pressure from the PMO, the PM, and finance minister to protect a Liberal connected firm which in the past has broken election laws to donate to the Liberal party from criminal prosecution is outrageous.
It is therefore not surprising that five former Attorney Generals have signed a letter urging an RCMP investigation into the matter, while citizens have begun to call for a resignation. Or that Jane Philpott a highly reputable Liberal MP and second cabinet minister has resigned from the Trudeau government citing a lack of confidence with the PM’s handling of the SNC-affair.
Andrew Coyne perhaps broke down the sentiment felt by many best in his article for the National Post, “for those in power to enable law-breaking by others is every bit as much of an assault on the rule of law as if they had broken the laws themselves.”
That is just the beginning.
The idea that this pressure was done to protect the Liberal government’s re-election in Quebec is nation-shattering. Of course, it now makes sense why more Albertans want to separate than Quebecors, the PM appears to be willing to potentially break the law to keep 3000 jobs in Quebec(9000 nationally) but does nothing when B.C. stands in the way of pipeline development.
Even if the B.C. governments stance make largely no sense when put into perspective the other projects they do support such as the carbon producing LNG project as well as the potentially environmentally damaging B.C ferries. In the case of SNC a company which spent $30,000 on prostitutes for for Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi’s son? It is worth manipulating the media and losing an Attorney General over.
I can’t help but imagine many in Canada are currently wondering to themselves, if the Prime Minister represents the national interest, or if instead, he has decided to become the Prime Minister of Quebec. The one province to have magically been provided with a reduced immigration rate, even as the Trudeau government campaigns on the competitive advantages of expanded immigration for every other region.
All of that is extremely worrying, not just for Canadian news outlets, but now even in the global press. The New York Post published the following as Editorial, Canada’s ‘anti-Trump’ doesn’t look so pretty anymore, while the Washington Post published, Canada is not the world’s ‘moral leader.’ Just look at our newest scandal.
The potential blow-back does not stop there. The allegations against the Trudeau government directly place them in sight of China for having a politicized judicial system, precisely when the nation faces serious diplomatic strain in its relationship with the nation due to the extradition of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou.
China has according to the CBC, already invoked the “SNC-Lavalin controversy to advocate for Huawei exec’s release.”
Looks like Canada’s back on the world stage!
While pundits, politicians, and news sites are an important part of the discussion, the most important are the Canadian people.
Their engagement level and over-all reactions are the
For the most part, only a caucus push forced by grass roots members will cause a quick response.
How do Canadians feel about the SNC-Lavalin Affair?
While no legitimate and verified polling has been done on how Canadians feel about a potential Trudeau resignation, there are a few interesting points of data available.
Firstly, the overall support for the Liberal party has significantly dipped poll after poll during the SNC affair.
According to a recent Angus Poll. the Liberals have fallen to a low of 31% while the Conservatives have edged towards 38%.
That kind of shift has not been seen(outside of outlier polls) since the days before Mr. Trudeau’s nomination victory. Secondly, we can look at online polls done on large non-partisan websites.
One of these is the following Yahoo News poll which found out of 26,000 online voters 70% wanted the PM to resign. Yahoo News is by no means a polling organization, but the views of their readership could be relative to the country. Lastly, we can look at the closest official polling which exists around the SNC-Lavalin topic. According to a Forum Research poll, a majority (57%) of individuals who have heard about the SNC-Lavalin affair had a worsened outlook on the PM. Interestingly to 36% of voters it had no affect.
It would not be strange to see these kinds numbers considering that Conservatives and NDP members overwhelmingly oppose the scandal, while most Liberals continue to blindingly support their leader.
Now here is the good news for the Liberal party. If the Prime Minister resigns it could still very well be possible for another Liberal MP such as Jody Wilson-Raybould to win the 2019 election.
The 2015 Sunny Ways coalition may be bruised, but it is still the largest group of active voters within the country.
With the right potentially split, and the NDP literally a hollow shell of itself, a Liberal party led by someone other than the PM could very well still win. But only if the Prime Minister does the right thing and resigns providing enough time for a new leader to salvage this government and fight in a free and fair election.
For that to happen though, the PM must make a hard but needed choice.
For the good of his party, our institutions, and the nation’s global standing the Prime Minister should resign. If not this,
Canadians should not be governed by those who have lost the confidence of the electorate.
What do you think? Could this scandal end the Trudeau government?
Join the conversation by commenting below!
The Social took the opportunity last week to get behind Prime Minister Justin Trudeau after he was caught making fun of US President Donald Trump to other world leaders, framing it as Trudeau facing “a bully”, and that we, as Canadians like to “play clean”.
“Sometimes you have to face a bully with a squad,” said Melissa Grelo on the show. She referenced French President Macron’s attempts to push back against Trump’s comments on Isis fighters.
Do Canadians believe that Trudeau’s jokes about Trump were part of a meeting of leaders, coming together to face off against an unfair adversary?
It’s hard to paint talking behind someone’s back as the act of confronting a bully. On the flip side, it isn’t hard to imagine President Trump as a schoolyard bully while watching him troll French President Macron about Isis fighters. Just watching their body language provokes the image of one kid trying to get a rise out of another.
Self-described gossip expert and The Social co-host Lainey Lui commented that “what they were doing was exchanging information… gossiping is a form of communication… I’m so tired of gossip being given this bad name.” While it would be easy to dismiss this as nonsense, gossip does, in fact, create bonding among the people who share in it. Creating an “us” and a “them” brings the “us” closer together. Trudeau’s little schoolyard circle of gossip may very well have strengthened relations between Trudeau and the foreign leaders he shared it with.
Of course–there’s a reason why gossip has a bad name. It’s risky, in that it will damage the relationship with the person being gossiped about, if it is found out–as Trudeau has discovered. As far as strategy goes–it’s probably not a good idea to take any risks with our single largest trading partner.
Then there is the high road–the refusal to take part in gossip. If you’ve ever met someone with this level of character, you’ll know that there isn’t the easy bonding that comes from sharing cheap shots on someone who isn’t there to defend themselves. But, when it’s clear that you both have the same frustrations with that other person, it’s not hard to develop a deep respect for those who abstain from gossiping. After all, with that comes a trust that they won’t be talking behind your back, when you’re not around.
Hence Trump’s comment about Trudeau being “two-faced”.
At the end of the day, all world leaders need to be strategic in their relations with one another. They each need to behave in whatever way best serves the interests of their countries. Whether they choose trolling or gossiping or stately reverence, what matters is managing relationships in a way that enables them to get the job done.
But aside from all that–what was even said? I think Melissa Grelo summed up the whole issue best when she said, “this is not particularly salacious stuff–although when videos like this leak out, it sure becomes salacious.”
Perhaps it was the giddy tone in which Trudeau talked about Trump behind his back that caught the attention of top Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden’s campaign team so much so that they decided to use it in an attack ad. It also probably didn’t help Canada’s relations with the US that Saturday Night Live–which Trump claims he doesn’t watch, but feels the need to trash on Twitter from time to time for its routine lampooning of him–did a whole opening sketch on Trudeau (Jimmy Fallon), French President Emmanuel Macron (Paul Rudd) and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (James Corden) belittling Trump (Alec Baldwin) in a high school cafeteria.
The Trudeau government will be reducing government revenue by $3-6 billion in order to cut taxes by roughly $25 per month for working Canadians.
According to a motion tabled by Finance Minister Bill Morneau, Ottawa will increase the personal income tax exemption by $2,000, to $15,000.
The proposed amendment to the Income Tax Act would ensure that Canadians who make under $147,000 a year would pay no taxes on the first $15,000, with benefits being spread out over four years.
Interestingly, given the wording of the motion, a dual-income family earning nearly $300,000 would receive the full tax cut.
While some wealthy Canadians would receive the cut, nearly 1.1 million Canadians would pay no tax at all as a result of the increase.
Based on the government’s own estimates, implementing the cut will cost government revenues of $3 billion in the first year, rising to $6 by 2023.
While any tax cuts will be sure to be received well by Canada’s rather overtaxed population, especially when you look at the average tax rates across our southern neighbour, the timing of the cut may worry deficit hawks.
As of now, Canada is on track to hit a $27.4 billion dollar annual deficit, multiple times higher than what the Trudeau government promised, and on track to balance no sooner than two decades from now.
With 22 years needed to balance, according to the nation’s Finance Department, Canada could be in a problematic situation should a global recession occur.
The items available on Amazon get weirder every year.
You can now purchase a Justin Trudeau Mr. Dress-Up colouring book from the online platform, and join in the PM’s famous and sometimes disastrously controversial love for costumes.
The book includes some of Trudeau’s most known costume choices, including Aladdin in blackface.
Trudeau has notably worn blackface more times than he can remember, including at least three times where video or photos have leaked.
While the content of the book is designed for children colouring, most will likely buy it as a conversation piece to keep around the house.
Conservative finance critic Pierre Poilievre slammed the minority Liberal government and the media at a Sunday press conference in Ottawa, where he called on Finance Minister Bill Morneau to come up with a plan to “restart” the sagging Canadian economy that shed 71,000 jobs last month.
“Others here in the bubble, inside Ottawa, might be fascinated by the palace intrigue of leadership politics,” replied Poilievre to a reporter’s question about his party leader Andrew Scheer’s viability at the Conservative helm.
“But if you’re one of those 71,000 people who just lost your job in November, you probably couldn’t care less.”
Poilievre and the Opposition Conservatives are calling for on Morneau, “to present an urgent fall economic update to salvage Canada’s teetering economy.”
Last week, Statistics Canada posted the worst one-month job loss numbers in the country for a decade as 71,000 additional people were out of work for November 2019. This included 18,000 in British Columbia and 18,000 in Alberta. It was especially terrible news for Alberta as it has already shed more than 150,000 jobs since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau first took office in 2015.
According to the Carleton MP, whose riding is on the outskirts of the “Ottawa bubble”, the update should come with “major tax cuts for entrepreneurs and workers, so they can spend and invest and get out economy moving again.”
The Conservatives also want the government to cut “the insane, high levels of red tape holding (entrepreneurs) down,” said Poilievre. “(And) reassure investors by presenting a reasonable plan to help phase out the deficit in the medium term.”
With just five sitting days in the House of Commons scheduled before the Christmas break, Poilievre took exception with media queries about whether there was enough time to accomplish the task.
“You seem to be suggesting that our prime minister spent his first 10 days after the election surfing rather than working… the election was in October, they’ve had plenty of time,” replied Poilievre, referencing Trudeau’s Tofino trip, a post-election holiday he took after the October 21 vote.
“The storm clouds of our economy have been gathering overhead for a long time (and) the average Canadian wasn’t surfing in November. The average Canadian was worried about his or her job…and then we got a report that south of the border they had a quarter million new jobs.”
“So this is a made in Canada problem. It requires urgent action and we’re calling on the government to take that action by calling for a fall economic update.”
As for Morneau, Poilievre said if the finance minister were “competent, he’s got it already written. But that is not a safe assumption.”
“We’re prepared to work through the Christmas break, if necessary… and I’m sorry if Liberals have vacation plans. Cancel them.”
Asked whether the Conservatives red-tape cutting, lower taxes mantra was in need of an overhaul in light of the previous election result that boosted Conservatives presence in the Commons but failed to unseat Trudeau, Poilievre bristled.
“The trendy pundits that you bring on CBC… they tell us that we need to abandon everything we believe in. That we need to embrace big government, high deficits and high taxes,” replied the Carleton MP.
“That is the absolute worst thing Conservatives could do. That would be an electoral, political and economic disaster for the country if we went down that road. Our goal is not just to fit in with the four socialist parties. Our goal will be to stand out. To stand out as the only voice of taxpayers.”