I spent several weeks in Montreal covering the Gomery commission hearings in 2005. Despite my earlier posts today, which detail shoddy work by the Gomery crew, it is true that anyone who sat through those hearings could only shake his head at how sleazy the sponsorship scandal was. Here are three of my pieces from that period.
The question is not whether the sponsorship program was a nasty business. It had already been exhaustively demonstrated, long before Sheila Fraser’s final audit, that it was. The question is not whether there was criminal wrongdoing. The courts have established that there was. The question is whether John Gomery’s commission of inquiry substantially added to the sum of human knowledge or the balance of universal justice during a year and a half of expensive, media-saturated work.
As Judge Gomery’s own contrite expression yesterday demonstrated, the answer to that one is not nearly as clear.