Saturday, January 21, 2006

Election 2006 - Liberal Campaign Scandals & Bloopers

NEW ADDITIONS (#47 - #53) - The liberal party just keeps on giving. So far this weekend, the liberals have given us another six outtakes to add to the list including liberal cabinet minister Reg Alcock’s outburst calling Canadian Corrections Officers “Dumb as posts”, and a voter registration scandal in the riding of another cabinet minister Anne McLellan.

The following e-mail showed up in the Blue Maple Leaf’s inbox today. It is a list of Bloopers from the liberal campaign in the first 53 days of the campaign. The list comes to us courtesy of Steve Morrissey in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

1. ITSCAM: The RCMP launched a criminal investigation into to the release of information by the Department of Finance, related to the income trust issue. Also the failure of Goodale to resign and the obfuscation as to who knew what.

2. WorkScam: "Campaign Cash Grab" The Liberal Party will lay off much of its campaign headquarters staff over Christmas with no pay, and has told some on leave from the government they should collect vacation pay from the public payroll if they have it coming.

3. Liberal lobbyists - also being laid off and 'Mike Duffy Live' reported that they were told by the Liberal party to return to their employers and request to be paid in the holiday interim. A lobbyist working on a campaign, even if they've de-registered temporarily, is in violation of their ethics rules and they're putting politicians in a conflict of interest which violates their ethics rules.

4. Abotech Affair - Liberal MP David Smith (Pontiac). The computer consultancy firm that he once ran, now run by his wife out of the family home, has had contracts with the federal government suddenly terminated as a result of an audit at Consulting and Audit Canada, a branch of Public Works. Not to mention Aboriginal slurs. The controversy surrounding Mr. Smith is now being reviewed by the federal ethics commissioner.

5. Elie Betito resignation - president of the Liberal riding association in Oakville provoked an outrage over comments he made to a voter. In short, he wrote "take your NRA , GUN LOVING ASS BACK TO THE U.S. WHERE YOU BELONG".

6. Omar Alghabra - Ontario Liberal candidate, according to eyewitnesses, declared when he won the party's nomination that, "This is a victory for Islam! Islam won! ... Islamic power is extending into Canadian politics".

7. Belinda Stronach - being investigated by Elections Canada for campaign spending. Documents obtained showed that on voting day in the June 28, 2004, election Stronach's campaign engaged in a spending spree for entertainment and a hefty bill from Atlantis Creative Group, a Toronto-based public relations firm. The payments flagged by Elections Canada include an invoice for $34,240 for what was classified as an election day project. A subsequent invoice from Atlantis treats that earlier payment as a deposit for the project, whose final price tag grew to $75,378.

8. Jean Pelletier - fired, rehired and now fired again.

9. Klander Slander - Mike Klander, executive vice-president of the federal Liberal party's Ontario wing, stepped down after photographs of Chow, the NDP candidate for the Toronto riding of Trinity-Spadina, and a chow chow dog were posted on his blog dated Dec. 9 under the heading ``Separated at Birth".

10. Scott Reid & John Duffy - Now infamous "beer & popcorn" remarks.

11. Washington Gaff - evidence shows Martin, Frank McKenna and others orchestrate the Washington spat for cheap political gain.

12. Photo Smear - Stephen Harper says it's "beyond tasteless" for the Liberals to use a photo of himself and Bloc Québécois Leader Gilles Duceppe at a Holocaust memorial. The photo shows Harper whispering to Duceppe during the Holocaust memorial last spring on Parliament Hill, suggesting he would work with the separatist party.

13. David Emerson - Industry Minister is quoted in a blog by Jamie Elmhirst, the Liberals' B.C. president, as referring to Layton's "boiled dog's head smile." Emerson said he would not apologize for comparing NDP Leader Jack Layton to a boiled dog's head because he didn't mean the remark to be insulting.

14. Dave Haggard - former labour leader and a failed Liberal candidate in 2004, was paid $9,000 a month plus expenses by the Paul Martin government to produce a report on apprenticeship training that has yet to be released to the public. Haggard, who is running again for the Liberals, said Thursday he worked as a special adviser on apprenticeship issues from early January to Sept. 30, when he submitted his report.

15. Sam Bulte - MP for Parkdale/High Park is having her election campaign bankrolled by the Canadian entertainment cartel. Bulte previously authored a one-sided report proposing crazy, US-style copyright laws for Canada, and her pals from the Canadian Recording Industry Association threw her a $250/plate fundraiser. "How else am I supposed to raise money?" Bulte said.

16. Dale Muti - a prominent Calgary Liberal, a hand-picked candidate by Paul Martin for the 2004 election, defected to the Conservatives saying the Liberals are unprincipled and that Mr. Martin has failed Canadians, for the Grits’ unethical behavior as outlined in the Gomery report on the sponsorship scandal, but also because the prime minister is ignoring the concerns of Albertans.

17. Oral Report - revealed that in February 2005, the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs hired a consultant for $132,000 and specified in the contract that "presentations shall be oral with supporting material provided to aid comprehension but not retained by the department".

18. Claude Laverdure - Canada's ambassador to France remains the biggest diplomatic spender even though he cut spending on cocktail receptions and fine dining in half last year. He came under fire for racking up more than $201,000 in hospitality claims in 2004, spent $105,261 in 2005 hosting foreign dignitaries and businesspeople in posh Paris.

19. "Small Business" - on Jan 4 Paul Martin says, "Let me tell you, I am very proud of having started with a small Canadian company, uh, a small Canadian company, which today, uh, build, uh, most of it's ships in Canada…." He was hired as Maurice Strong's personal assistant (1966) - the family friend who was head of Power Corp - who then owned CSL. He was put on the board of CSL, then President, and then the next year, in a sweet-heart leveraged deal, bought the company for $190 million.

20. Vickers and Benson - Martin continues to award contracts to a company implicated in the sponsorship scandal. In March of 2000, Former Public Works minister Alfonso Gagliano received assurances from John Manley and Paul Martin that Vickers and Benson would continue to receive government contracts. Gagliano assured the company that they would not lose any business. Guité said he was told that competitions could be rigged. Contracts awarded: $3,411,230 on Oct 28, 2005 and $492,200 on September 28, 2005.

21. Relocation Services Scam - Royal LePage. A billion dollar contract to relocate civil servants across the country is mired in allegations of mismanagement and cronyism so serious that the parliamentary spending watchdog may send it to Canada's Auditor General for review.

22. Options Canada - allegations that the organization contravened the Quebec Referendum Act and clearly broke federal Treasury Board rules and the years of cover-up. The organization was created at the last minute and received $4.8 million two or three weeks before the 1995 referendum, one week after it was created. RCMP called in by the Department.

23. Marc Garneau - Liberal candidate and former astronaut Marc Garneau has compared the sovereigntist movement in Quebec with Washington's decision to invade Iraq.

24. Kim Doran - Deputy National Director (Organization and Policy) of the Liberal Party found currently working on the campaign in Eastern Ontario), at the same time was representing the Coalition for Gun Control. She was awarded in March 2003 a five month $380,000 contract by the Justice Department to lobby the federal solicitor general, Treasury Board and Privy Council, according to a detailed lobbyist report for funds for the ailing firearms registry. The RCMP have now been asked to investigate by the Canadian Shooting Sports Association.

25. Income Trusts II - Jan. 6, the American SEC is taking "very seriously'' complaints of insider trading involving Finance Minister Ralph Goodale's November announcement on income trusts. There is also a signal that the Ontario Securities Commission may be doing the same.

26. Edward Keyserlingk - Canadian taxpayers shelled out $53,000 over two years to ferry a hand-picked government appointee between his job in Ottawa and his home in Montreal. The public service integrity officer, is paid between $675-$800 a day for the position that keeps him occupied an average of three days a week. John Williamson, federal director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, called it an "absolutely preposterous and outrageous" practice that's ripping off the public.

27. "Soldiers with Guns" & "Duffy on Duffy" - Jan 10, negative anti-military ad posted on Liberal website, distributed to media and hours later pulled. "Duffy on Duffy" results as John Duffy attempts to intimidate Mike Duffy over further questioning of the ad. Second time John Duffy makes an ass out of himself during campaign.

28. Platform Leak - on Jan 11 it appears entire Liberal platform leaked to Western Standard and perhaps others. As well on this day Liberal shrill Susan Murray says "Bullshit" to Brad Lavigne on Don Newman’s "Politics".

29. Ujjal Dosanjh - on Jan 12 it was revealed he received $16,000 in campaign donations from two Ontario families involved in health-service companies when he was seeking election to the House of Commons in 2004. Six weeks later, he was named health minister in Paul Martin's Liberal government.

30. Jack Layton - who's campaigning as the defender of public health care, it was revealed that he had surgery at a private clinic in the 1990s, Canadian Press learned. Layton had hernia surgery at the Shouldice Hospital, a private facility in the Toronto suburb of Thornhill, while he was serving as a Toronto city councillor. Yes, not a Liberal scandal, but still worth mentioning.

31. Bob Speller - (Haldimand-Norfolk) Liberal candidate proudly displays on his website a letter that claims western farmers want him back. Turns out, the three "farmers" who signed the endorsement happen to be a Manitoba Liberal candidate, campaign manager and riding vice-president.

32. David Oliver - Abbotsford BC Liberal candidate turfed over allegation he and his campaign manager guaranteed NDP candidate a win in the next municipal election, and offered him a job in Ottawa, if Oliver went on to win the election on Jan. 23. The NDP has written to Elections Canada requesting an investigation.

33. Tony Valeri Flips - Hamilton (East-Stoney Creek) Liberal cabinet minister more than doubled his money in three months when he flipped a property next to his home to the son of a prominent businessman with ties to the Liberal party. Valeri, Liberal MP for Hamilton, purchased the property on Ridge Road along the escarpment in upper Stoney Creek for $225,000 last April. Three months later, Valeri sold the property for $500,000 to John Ng.

34. "Soldiers with Guns II" - Paul Martin defends ad that warned the Conservatives would put "soldiers with guns" on the streets of Canadian cities. After saying several times that he had approved the ad, Mr. Martin reversed himself on a CBC-TV town hall meeting where he replied that he'd seen a transcript before they were approved. Liberal candidate Keith Martin in Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca apologized for the release of the ad. "Some idiot went and sent it out with the other 11 ads, and it was never sanctioned by the party, never approved, and we are completely appalled that this went out”.

34. Brenda Chamberlain - voter cards for Kevin and Gillian Chamberlain, son and daughter-in-law of Liberal MP Brenda Chamberlain, who both live outside the Guelph riding, were sent to campaign office address withing the riding. Chamberlain says if anyone in her family broke the rules by voting in the riding of Guelph in 2004, it's not her place to do anything about it.

36. Notwithstanding Blunder - Martin said his vow to ban the federal government's use of the Constitution's notwithstanding clause is something he's been thinking about "for a long time," despite the fact there is no mention of the issue in the party's (leaked) platform. Ottawa South Liberal MP David McGuinty was featured in the morning papers wondering aloud what the heck his fearless leader, Paul Martin, was thinking when the PM announced he would scrap the federal use of the notwithstanding clause. Deputy PM admits she was in the dark about it too.

37. Andrew Telegdi - Liberal MP made it into the bad news with a story he had once used the racial slur "niggers." He says the remark was made 32 years ago, when he was the head of the student’s federation at the University of Waterloo, and the word was then used on campus to describe any disadvantaged group.

38. Denis Coderre - Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan filed a lawsuit against Liberal MP Denis Coderre, alleging the former sports minister falsely accused him of making a slur against francophones during an NHL game. A senior NHL official unloaded on federal MP Denis Coderre on Thursday after the former minister in charge of sports asked Hockey Canada to reconsider Shane Doan's selection to the Olympic hockey team over an alleged ethnic slur.

39. Joe Volpe - Citizenship and Immigration Minister rented limos to ferry him on long trips from Toronto last year, with one ride to Buffalo and back costing more than $1,000, Sun Media learned.

40. PCO Solicitation - Paul Martin's Liberals have issued an "urgent" call to Privy Council Office staff for their support and donations in the run-up to the Jan. 23 vote. Liberal party president Mike Eizenga mailed bright yellow teledispatches directly to the office addresses of employees of the PCO, which is supposed to remain non-partisan and non-political.

41. Gary Richard - Mothers Against Drunk Driving has accused the Nova Scotian Liberal candidate of trivializing their message, "Friends don't let friends drive drunk." Gary Richard, the Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley candidate, is using the slogan "Friends don't let friends vote Conservative" in his campaign pamphlets. The similarity of the two slogans has upset the president of the Cobequid Chapter of MADD. "We're disappointed with it. We feel it trivializes a very serious message about driving impaired," Kathleen Foster-Alfred said.

42. Access to Information - On November 7th, 2005, and November 16th, 2005, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation submitted two access to information requests asking for the total amount taxpayers paid for lawyers fees at the Gomery Inquiry into the Sponsorship Program. These requests went to two government bodies – the Privy Council Office and the Department of Public Works and Government Services Canada. On December 5th, 2005, both the Privy Council Office and the Department of Public Works replied saying an additional 60 days was needed for one request and an additional 100 days was needed for the other. Coincidentally, the election will be over by the time this information sees the light of day. Update: the little info now revealed shows $2 million in legal fees required to recover $1 million.

43. Chris Axworthy - in the riding of Saskatoon-Wanuskewin Liberal candidate Chris Axworthy has apologized to Conservative incumbent Maurice Vellacott after someone used a phone in Axworthy's campaign office to falsely accuse Vellacott of sexual assault on a live televised candidates' forum earlier this week.

44. Gilles Savard - A Liberal candidate in Quebec has conceded defeat and urged his supporters to vote for the Conservative party. The Liberal candidate for the riding of Jonquiere-Alma, is throwing his support behind the Tories to stave off a Bloc Quebecois victory. Update: he is now backtracking somewhat from his earlier remarks.

45. Buzz Hargrove - Canadian Auto Workers president used a campaign stop in Strathroy to call Conservative Leader Stephen Harper a separatist whose Alberta-born political principles place him outside mainstream Canadian values. He seemed to agree with questioners that Quebecers should vote for the Bloc Quebecois over the Conservatives. A day later Buzz did not back down on his statements, he encourages Quebeckers to vote for the Bloc Québécois in a bid to siphon support from the Conservatives. Buzz believes the NDP should leave Quebec to the Bloc. Harper responds, "It is absolutely unacceptable to in any way, shape or form suggest that people should vote for the breakup of this country in order for the Liberal party to maintain its entitlement to power," Harper said during a campaign stop Thursday morning in Waterdown, Ont.

46. Ron Chyczij - In a last-minute blow to high-profile Liberal candidate Michael Ignatieff, the president of the party’s riding association in Etobicoke-Lakeshore swung his support today Jan 20 to Conservative rival John Capobianco in Monday’s federal election.

* New *

47. Don Lindsay - at the Pembroke Outdoor Sportsman's Club, Liberal candidate Don Lindsay's self destruction continued when club member and Canadian Veteran George Tompkins stood to ask the candidates his question. "If the handgun ban goes forward. What plan would your party offer to compensate those of us who legally own the guns that would be confiscated?" To which Lindsay replied "Sir America is our neighbor not our nation, if you elect a society that talks about that kind of perspective I suggest that perhaps you go there!"

48. Anne McLellan - Laurie Hawn, Conservative Candidate in Edmonton Centre, has filed a complaint with the Commissioner of Elections Canada after massive voter list irregularities were uncovered by his campaign. For some time, there have been rumors of election irregularities in Edmonton Centre. At an all candidates meeting with Elections Canada on January 4, 2006, it was revealed that two buildings had been struck from the electoral rolls because they were not residences. In reality, these buildings were both mailbox stores. Several days later, the Laurie Hawn campaign identified a third non-residence building which sells mail boxes and reported it to Elections Canada. A few days ago, the Laurie Hawn campaign was alerted, via e-mail, by an Edmonton lawyer that: "Lots of [Anne McLellan] supporters are enumerated at their downtown office address instead of at their houses. One of them was bragging about how many times he could vote liberal (sic) based on the number of leases he had in her riding."

49. Reg Alcock - after a candidates debate in parking lot after Reg was heard to utter in a load voice, inter alia, "Correctional Officers are dumb as Posts".

50. Translation services contracts - $3.6 million to Lexitech International (Liberal friendly Irving Company) and $1 million to Les Traductions Tessier of Ottawa. On Jan 16, 2006 bidders asked to extend the validity of their bids until January 25, 2006 - 9 days, a very unusual length and two days after the election. The contracts were actually awarded on 21 December 2005 and published on the MERX on 22 and 28 December 2005.

51. Travel Gate - Martin says Harper’s unfit to lead, form independent international policy because he has no world travel experience. Martin’s arrogance grew further as he told the media that Canadians who have not extensively traveled the world are not fit for public office. Paul Martin incorrectly stated that Stephen Harper had not left continental North America, when in fact, Mr. Harper has often traveled internationally – and several times with Paul Martin himself. Beyond forgetting these events completely, Mr. Martin suggested that only world travelers are capable of holding public office in Canada, because of the nature of the globalized world.

52. Alphonso Gagliano - revealed by the Western Standard is RCMP’s criminal background check of Gagliano, done before Jean Chrétien first appointed him to cabinet. It is almost completely blacked out. Then Commissioner Norman Inkster suggests that Gagliano be fingerprinted to prove or disprove the worst of the findings.

53. Criminal Cheques - Just as we get set to vote tomorrow, $250 energy rebate cheques are being sent to criminals behind bars, who already got to cast their vote in the comfort of their cells, heated by our tax dollars. In the words of a correctional officer: "I work to July to hand over all my money to the taxman, and today I gave convicted criminals a rebate cheque. It's all wrong. It's time we stood up and said enough is enough." It is another flawed rebate program, this time at cost of $2.4 billion.


At 9:13 PM, Blogger Hendrik said...

Here is another Liberal goof to add to your list:

At 9:53 PM, Blogger Canadi-anna said...

Excellent list. I hope everyone is paying attention.

At 6:51 AM, Anonymous Steve M said...

Thanks for the tip, I've added 5 more I hope will get posted!

At 10:13 AM, Blogger Michael said...

Thank you Hendrick for that link. It has been added to the article.

At 11:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's hope your as vigil with a Conservative government.


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