A planned response? - Macleans.ca

A planned response?


From his scrum after QP, Thomas Mulcair’s analysis of John Baird’s vague rebuke of the Parliamentary Budget Officer.

You know, it’s interesting to see when these answers come. Minister Baird’s answer with regard to the PBO supposedly overstepping its boundaries came in answer to my third question. So he knows he’s closing the questions from the Leader of the Opposition. That’s important because you know that it’s a planned response. So this was laid out in advance, the exact choice of words. He had his document in front of him. He was reading. This is something sent in by the Prime Minister’s Office so it’s a warning that Kevin Page has made the ultimate mistake: he doesn’t tell the Conservatives what they want to hear and he actually wants to be able to say the truth to the Canadian population and that’s the lesson that we take away.

You can review the tape here (you can’t see if there’s a paper in front of him, but Mr. Baird does look down several times when delivering the line in question).

It will be interesting to see if the sentiment is expressed again this afternoon. The last time Mr. Baird levelled an allegation in QP against an arms-length body—his criticism of the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy—he was pointedly not backed up the next day by one of his fellow cabinet ministers.