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Saturday, August 23, 2008

"I don't trust this party anymore" 

Harper appears bound and determined to call an election, and I suspect the goal is to shut down the In-and-Out hearings. Opposition MPs are saying this too:
A federal election would kill any attempt by MPs to cite for contempt Tory witnesses who ignored parliamentary summonses to election-finance hearings last week, and opposition politicians argue it is a key reason the government wants to rush to the polls.
The hearings have been pretty embarrassing for the Conservatives, particularly the ex-candidates who testified they smelled a rat. Kady O'Malley was liveblogging the Ethics Committee hearings and this is the kind of stuff that was coming out:
... basically, [Martelli] was asked to take a deposit, which would be returned to the party within the same day — “a simple in and out.” The money was deposited - $14,000 - and he eventually got back $8,000 from Elections Canada, which was sent back to the party.
When Michel Rivard looked at the papers — he was the one who did his - Martelli’s - taxes during the campaign, he had him sign “a bunch of papers.”
Carole Lavallee wonders whether he ever saw an invoice for these ad buys — he didn’t.
I’m beginning to see why the Conservatives may not have wanted to give this guy time to speak. . . .
He joined the party, he says, because he believed in their vision — but he doesn’t believe that anymore. “They’ve lost a lot of people,” he notes.
“They had set forth a vision, and there were people who believed in that vision,” he says. “It was disappointing when they pushed it over.” . . .
Twisting the knife a little, Pat Martin asks how Martelli felt — ethically — about the in and out scheme. “Disappointed,” he says. “A lot of people were disappointed.”
. . . “I don’t trust this party anymore,” he repeats.
And this :
Finally, the witnesses get to speak, and Marcel Proulx gets things started by asking David Marler about his experience as a candidate for the Conservatives . . . he asked ... about the transfer, and was told that it was “none of his business.”
You could seriously hear a pin drop right now. Marler is just so — ordinary, and I don’t mean that in a dismissive way. He doesn’t seem to have any sort of hidden agenda; he’s just telling his story, and It’s an amazingly intense - and tense - moment.
For his final question, Proulx asks whether Marler is still a Conservative Party candidate; the answer, he says, is no.
Now the Cons have brought in some new candidate rules. We won't be hearing any testimony in the future about how Conservative candidates don't trust the Conservative party anymore.

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