Amid the wreckage, the Conservatives in Ottawa still must govern. How they do that when two of their own Senators quit caucus late last week, and then their boss’s top aide resigned in the middle of a long weekend, is no easy task. Their headaches, mostly fuelled by the relentless reporting of CTV’s Robert Fife, will pound all week. Aaron Wherry and Paul Wells and John Geddes explain why this will be a long week.
- Related coverage: 12 thoughts on the Duffy scandal
The Toronto Star calls the current conniption enveloping Ottawa—the Mike Duffy Affair, let’s call it—the “worst scandal” that Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s gang has faced since they took power on the promise of unprecedented transparency and accountability in 2006. In Ottawa, what anyone usually means by scandal is a thing the government has done to piss off its critics. Harper’s scandals have gone mostly unpunished by voters, despite its critics being so routinely pissed off by so many things. Even when Conservatives were found guilty during the “in-and-out” affair that saw them improperly shuffle money around during the election campaign that brought them to power, John Geddes recalls, the party claimed victory. They were also found in contempt of Parliament, and we all know what real victory they claimed not long after, in May 2011. They’ve always found a way.
But the last week in federal politics would actually have made good television—depending on your tastes, obviously. Maybe that’s the barometer of what counts as real controversy. The Liberals’ demise a few years back, the Sponsorship Scandal, would have kind-of-sort-of made good TV. There was lots of corruption, anyway. So, when Harper stands up to address his caucus this morning, with cameras rolling, we’ll see how he looks on stage.
What’s above the fold this morning?
The Globe and Mail leads with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plan to publicly address caucus this morning. The National Post fronts a refugee camp in Zaatari, Jordan that’s taking on 1,000 Syrians each day. The Toronto Star goes above the fold with the federal government’s continued awarding of contracts to companies previously convicted of bid-rigging. The Ottawa Citizen leads with the massive tornado that struck Oklahoma City’s suburbs, killing dozens. iPolitics fronts allegedly inappropriate political donations to the Conservative Party from political appointees to the EI referee board. CBC.ca leads with . National Newswatch showcases CTV News’ story about Harper’s former legal adviser “working on” a legal deal between Senator Mike Duffy and former PMO chief of staff Nigel Wright that involved Wright cutting a cheque to help Duffy repay inappropriately claimed expenses.
Stories that will be (mostly) missed
|1. Flubbed contracts. Parliamentarians will question the actions of Public Works employees who improperly awarded a $500-million contract to a relocation services company.||2. Missing man. Diego Hernandez, a 22-year-old B.C. man, and a business partner were last seen May 8 in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, after putting on a mixed martial arts event in the resort city.|
|3. Wind turbines. Veterans of the D-Day invasion of Normandy during World War Two are speaking out against a plan that would see wind turbines installed off the coast of the former battleground.||4. Sniffer dogs. Canada’s border-guarding canines, some teams of which are being dismantled, apparently detect 20 times as much meat as narcotics at international crossings.|