Thursday, September 12, 2019
Elections and Mounties Creep Me Out
I don't like riding to Justin Trudeau's defence but this business about the RCMP investigating supposed wrongdoing in the midst of an election campaign smacks of political interference by the national police agency and not for the first time.
Are the RCMP brass trying to meddle in this election? I can't say they're not and, face it, they do have a dodgy track record. This sudden interest in questioning the prime minister and his PMO as well as headlines about interviewing Jody Wilson-Raybould about possible obstruction of justice in the SNC-Lavalin business couldn't be better timed if someone wanted to give the Tories a leg up in mid-campaign.
It's in all the papers. Mainly inference. Trudeau isn't talking. Must have something really sinister to hide. How dare he campaign for re-election when the embers of this scandal are rekindled?
The thing is, it's too easy a set-up. All you have to do is muddy the waters. The press will do the rest and what a bunch of saps they are.
They've got very short memories. You never read any reference to the role then commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli played in giving Stephen Harper a leg up to defeat prime minister Paul Martin. Out of nowhere Zaccardelli delivered a letter to the NDP suggesting that Ralph Goodale was under investigation for some sort of wrongdoing. Ralph Goodale FFS!
It was an investigation that wasn't. There was nothing to it. It was a drive-by smear job on Goodale and the Martin government. In the aftermath Zaccardelli was summoned to appear before a Commons committee and refused to answer MPs questions.
And who can forget how the RCMP twisted itself and its integrity into knots to invent the "immaculate bribe" case against Duffy. 33 criminal counts. Enough to bury anyone. It was corrupt. Everybody in the PMO was off the hook. Everyone in the Tory Senate leadership was off the hook. Even the Tory legal office was off the hook. At trial, the veteran judge found plenty of evidence of criminal wrongdoing, loads of it. He then acquitted Duffy of every charge, all 33 of them. Justice Vaillancourt sent a withering message - next time you want to prosecute such crimes, try charging the criminals.
Once again the head of the state police agency was never called to account. The file was closed. The culprits were never brought to justice.
Cops, whether the RCMP or the FBI, should not intervene in elections. Comey's meddling with 2 weeks to go by re-opening and then quickly re-closing the investigation into Hillary's emails was enough to saddle America and the world with the worst US president in that nation's existence. The mere hint of wrongdoing can be as devastating as a trial and conviction in a court of law.
Now we have this business. Was there obstruction of justice? Hell, I don't know. Jody Wilson-Raybould said there was nothing rising to the level of a crime. She should have known. She was there. She was the attorney-general, the country's top law enforcement official. The boss.
I don't want to see another false majority this time around, Liberal or Conservative. Majority governments have been a dismal failure at responding to the grave threats of the day. Chretien was a dud. Harper was a dud. Junior has proved to be a dud. They have not done right by this country.
However the predicament Canada, like every other nation, faces today demands elections that aren't skewed by scandals and innuendo. And the last thing we need is the Mounties' thumb on the scales again.