Ottawa

What's going on in Laurier-Sainte-Marie?

Postmedia raises questions about Conservative fundraising efforts in the Quebec riding of Laurier-Sainte-Marie.

The unexplained donations – Postmedia News uncovered 11 – fall mostly into three groups: a group of donations of $666.66, totalling $99,999; a group of donations of $733.33, totalling $32,999.85; and a group of donations of $333.33, totalling $14,333.19. Postmedia tried to contact all the donors on the riding’s donor list from 2007 to 2009, almost 550 people. Many failed to return calls; others could not be located. Some said they couldn’t recall making donations, and others declined to discuss the issue. But 11 said they definitely did not make donations, and would like to know how their names ended up on the list.

Rocco Carbone, who owns an asbestos removal business, was surprised to hear he was listed as a donor to the Tory riding association. “I gave money to the party?” he said. “I never gave no money to no party.” Italio Barone, who owns a banquet hall in Montreal’s Little Italy, said he is not a Conservative and doesn’t know where Laurier-Sainte-Marie is. “I have nothing to do with the Conservatives,” he said. “I want to find out who the guy was doing the fundraising because I have a few words to say to him.”