The SNC-Lavalin scandal continues to expand with lots of twists and turns. Canadians are in for a real treat as the inner workings of the Trudeau government are going to be exposed.
As a result, it is CYA time- Cover Your Ass time! We will see a lot of that as anyone who is even remotely connected to this file will be analyzing every comment, decision, recommendation or email they sent or received on this file and that includes political and departmental staff.
It gets more complicated with the former Justice Minister and Attorney General threatening to speak out on how she feels she was pressured on this file. There will be lots of folks trying to justify their actions/involvement.
Keep in mind the RCMP can step in at any time if they think there might have been criminal wrong doing.
Today the Clerk of the Privy Council, the most second most powerful person in Ottawa (some would argue the most powerful) next to the Prime Minister and the person in charge of all federal civil servants was before the House Justice Committee.
If we ignore his inflammatory language which was probably a diversionary tactic IE what caught the media’s attention first, was it his assassination comment or the fact that he met with the Attorney General to discuss/review/ contemplate the SNC-Lavalin file.
The follow-up questions from the media should be:
- How many individual ministers did you meet with to discuss individual files since being appointed Clerk by Justin Trudeau?
- Name those files and ministers
- In each case who suggested to you (note not requested) that a meeting might be a good idea.
- How many ministers initiated the request for a meeting? How often did the “suggestion” come from PMO?
- Follow-up questions for any of those ministers who met with the Clerk should be how did you arrive at the decision to meet with the Clerk? Was it “suggested” as a good idea? Who by?
It is a red herring to suggest that Jody Wilson-Raybould had options such as going to the Ethics Commissioner if she felt pressured. What minister would every do that with the risk involved if it was ever made public?
I don’t know a single minister from my days on the Hill who would not feel a little bit intimated meeting with the Clerk of the Privy Council to discuss a file or meeting with senior PMO staff for that matter, especially if that minister felt PMO might not like their decision. Ministers hold their jobs at the pleasure of the PM- they know that all to well.
Let’s get to the bottom of it.
Why did this meeting even take place (the Attorney General has a deputy minister, who reports to the Clerk and senior political and departmental advisors who would have informed or briefed her on the pressure from the company, their lawyers or the Quebec government or PMO for that matter?