This is a bad day for Stephen Harper. The RCMP alleges the PM’s ex-chief of staff, Nigel Wright, broke the law when he gave a personal cheque to Sen. Mike Duffy as a means of repaying taxpayers for improperly claimed expenses. Corp. Greg Horton, an RCMP investigator, built his case against Wright in an 80-page document, known as an information to obtain a production order, that was released today. The doc meticulously dissects roles big and small played by myriad senior Conservatives—both in the Prime Minister’s Office and the Senate—as Wright’s payment to Duffy played out.
This afternoon, Harper will respond to the document in Question Period. He has a habit of remaining defiant whenever the opposition thinks it has him cornered, and he almost certainly will give no ground. We don’t know exactly how he’ll phrase his defence, or how quickly he’ll counterattack, but we do know he’ll be on his feet more than ever. Expect a fiery Tom Mulcair two sword lengths across the aisle to make the PM’s job quite difficult.
Maclean’s is your home for the daily political theatre that is Question Period, when MPs trade barbs and take names for 45 minutes every day. If you’ve never watched, check out our primer, which we produced with J-Source. Today, QP runs from 2:15 p.m. until just past 3. We tell you who to watch, we stream it live, and we liveblog all the action. The whole thing only matters if you participate. Chime in on Twitter with #QP.