View From the Hill by Keith Beardsley. Katie Telford Play Shows Conservatives Dumb as a Bag of Hammers.

MAY 5, 2021 – Today, a Conservative motion demanding the Prime Minister fire his Chief of Staff over the Vance issue was defeated in the House of Commons by a vote of 209 to 122.

Thank goodness! Who dreams up this stuff for the Conservatives- please tell us their name so that they can be fired too! After all if you can demand Liberal staffers be fired why not Conservative ones?

Personally, if I was Katie Telford right now, I would be giving the middle finger to the Conservatives.

Who gave opposition parties the right to decide who works or does not work in the Prime Minister’s office? Only the PM can do that and only he is responsible for their action or inaction. The buck stops on Trudeau’s desk, not Telford’s, not some other junior staffer.

Outside of being a dumb motion the Conservatives gave up an opportunity to go after Trudeau and to hold him personally accountable on the Vance file. They also gave up an excellent opportunity to go after the Minister of Defence or an opportunity to attack Trudeau on the vaccine supply issue or an opportunity to nail the Prime Minister on our trillion dollar plus deficit and so on.

All of this for a cheap attack on a staffer.

The Conservatives biggest failure was that they took their aim off of the Prime Minister. This motion allows him to skate away with the media now focused on a staffer and not where it should be on the PM. Trudeau is the one responsible, not Telford. They should never have taken their focus off of the man at the top. Was Telford instructed by the Prime Minister or other senior Liberal, not to tell him details about Vance? When did he agree to that?

Was there an understanding between them that hot issues like this be kept from him to allow for plausible deniability? When was this decided? What issues would this apply too?

No matter how you look at it- it always comes back to the Prime Minister and when did he know and what did he do about it? Nothing can be simpler than that.

Should the Conservatives win the next election (and we all have opinions on that happening) I can almost guarantee you that there will be opposition motions for the Prime Minister to fire one of his staffers.

Sometimes these issues come back to bite you where it hurts.

Dumb as a bag of hammers.


Keith is a former Conservative political staffer with over 50 years of active involvement in Canadian politics. During that time, he has held quite a few party positions as well as political staff positions. Most recently, Keith was the Deputy Chief of Staff for Issues Management with Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper (2003-2008). Prior to that he worked as an advisor in the Leader’s Office for Peter Mackay, Joe Clark and Jean Charest. Keith also served as the Chief of Staff to the minister in three Federal departments during Brian Mulroney’s government (1984-89). Additional political experience came as the staff person in charge of Question Period from 1997-2008 where he served in both the Opposition and Government roles. Keith is also known for having created one of the most effective political rapid response teams in Canadian politics. He also has municipal experience and he was a city councilor in a suburb of Montreal. Known for his bluntness and to the point comments, this blog is also known for its fairness and respectful treatment of politicians from all parties. A well-known political pundit, Keith has appeared many times on Canadian political panels and he has been interviewed by major Canadian networks including CTV, CBC, Global. He has also given presentations/speeches in various parts of Canada and the USA.

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