The fallout from the SNC-Lavalin affair is only beginning to rain down on Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government but it seems to be having an impact — one that could put the Liberals on track to defeat in this fall’s federal election.
The controversy surrounding allegations about political interference in the prosecution of SNC-Lavalin, a major Quebec-based engineering firm, and the subsequent demotion and resignation from cabinet of former attorney-general Jody Wilson-Raybould (followed by the resignation of the prime minister’s principal secretary, Gerry Butts), is evolving on a daily basis.
Running away from a scandal in the dark shadows of a long winter weekend was once a textbook tactic to duck scrutiny by the media.
That worked in the days before social media, but when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s principal secretary, Gerald Butts, resigned on the Family Day holiday on Monday, the shock waves were instant, bypassing both broadcast and print media.
I’ve never been married, but I understand there are some marital arguments that get to a point where anything you say, no matter how factually correct or well-intentioned, seems to make it worse. Justin Trudeau and his advisers are in that special circle of hell right now with the SNC-Lavalin affair. You might even say that everything they have done since the beginning has made it worse.
It’s an affair that began almost two weeks ago with the Globe and Mail’s anonymous allegation that PMO aides pressured then attorney-general Jody Wilson-Raybould to direct prosecutors to settle SNC-Lavalin’s fraud and bribery charges with a deferred prosecution agreement.
The Trudeau government is leaking political support in the wake of the resignation of its former justice minister, making its chances of re-election this fall far less certain than they seemed to be at year’s end, according to a new poll provided exclusively to Global News.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s personal approval ratings are down; a declining number of Canadians think his government deserves re-election; and Andrew Scheer’s Conservatives narrowly lead the Liberals on the ballot box question.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s top aide, Gerald Butts, has resigned as the leader’s principal secretary, effective immediately.
Gerald Butts served this government – and our country – with integrity, sage advice and devotion. I want to thank him for his service and continued friendship. Please read his statement today: pic.twitter.com/VIaEHJMMe4
OTTAWA—Gerald Butts, Justin Trudeau’s principal secretary and long-time friend, has resigned amid allegations that the Prime Minister’s Office interfered to prevent criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin.
In a statement, Butts categorically denies the accusation that he or anyone else in the PMO improperly pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to help the Montreal engineering giant avoid prosecution on corruption and bribery charges related to contracts in Libya.
Time to ‘push back’ against federal government, Conservative leaders say at Sask. pro-pipeline rally
The battleground for pipelines and the oil and gas industry was set in Moosomin, Sask., on Saturday, as the federal Conservative Leader blasted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for his handling of the energy file.
“His attack on Canada’s energy sector is by design. It’s on purpose,” Andrew Scheer told the audience gathered for the pro-pipeline rally, also attended by Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe, New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs and Conservative Senator Denise Batters.
“This is the one area where he’s doing exactly what he said would do.”
Justin sucks and blows simultaneously. He made good on his transparency promise however, you can see right through his lies.
Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew says the federal Liberal government’s treatment of Jody Wilson-Raybould in the SNC-Lavalin scandal has done serious damage to the party’s reputation with Indigenous people in Canada.
Indigenous people have “made up their mind” on the issue, Kinew told CTV Question Period host Evan Solomon during an interview airing Sunday.
“Jody Wilson-Raybould appears to be the one conducting herself with integrity and the prime minister seems to be playing politics as usual,” he said. “I think that has damaged Trudeau’s reputation as being Canada’s first woke prime minister.”
A large majority of people following the controversy over Justin Trudeau, Jody Wilson-Raybould and SNC-Lavalin say the former justice minister has the most credibility, a new online poll says.
The online panel survey of 1,500 adults, taken Wednesday and Thursday by Public Square Research, showed that 43 per cent have followed the controversy since a Globe and Mail story cited anonymous sources who said the Prime Minister’s Office pressured Wilson-Raybould to avoid a court trial for the Quebec engineering firm SNC-Lavalin.
The prime minister has spent the last several days disclosing, line by tendentious line, the contents of his discussions with the former attorney general in September of last year. First we were informed that he “never directed” Jody Wilson-Raybould to put a stop to the criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin. Next, that he told her “the decision” was “hers alone” to make. Only latterly did we learn that this was in response to a question from her: are you directing me?
If he is permitted to discuss what was said between them, plainly so is she.
The SNC-Lavalin scandal and ensuing coverup have all the markings of a great political takedown. The original bombshell report in The Globe and Mail last Thursday was just the start.
That report cited sources who claimed former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould was demoted and shuffled from that role because she refused to intervene to stop the public prosecution of the Liberal-connected Quebec multinational. She was allegedly pressured by the PMO, but refused to do its dirty work.
“It’s actually very simple. I wake up every morning at 6, and begin my day by running up the national debt. After that, I stretch the truth, sidestep my responsibilities, and push my luck,” said the PM while sucking down a soy-based kale smoothie.