Mike Duffy trial begins Tuesday in Ottawa

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Debater

Duffy trial behind schedule, might not end before election

April 15, 2015

OTTAWA – The Mike Duffy trial will likely not end by June 2015, the judge suggested Wednesday – which also means it might not be resolved before the federal election.

Ontario Court Judge Charles Vaillancourt hinted that the trial, only in its second week, is already behind schedule.

“I don’t see us completing our task in the assigned number of days,” Vaillancourt told the court.

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http://globalnews.ca/news/1940185/duffy-trial-behind-schedule-might-not-...

Debater

Mike Duffy trial: Contracts approved after work completed, court hears

Apr 15, 2015

At the Mike Duffy trial today court heard that some contracts are approved after work has been completed and that in other cases, it's left to Senators to approximate the value of the work.

On the seventh day of the trial in provincial court in Ottawa, defence lawyer Donald Bayne continued to hammer away at the rules governing Senate contracts.

Bayne was reviewing with Sonia Makhlouf, a Senate human resources official, two of four contracts totalling nearly $65,000 that had been made with the firm of the suspended senator's friend, Gerald Donohue. Duffy has pleaded not guilty to 31 charges of fraud, breach of trust and bribery related to expenses he claimed as a senator and later repaid with money provided by the prime minister's former chief of staff.

One of the contracts for editorial and writing services, was for $10,000, and to be completed between Feb. 23 and March 31, 2009.

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More:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-trial-contracts-approved-afte...

Debater

Duffy, via taxpayer, paid PM's makeup at G8 event, contradicting government source

OTTAWA - The cost of Stephen Harper's makeup for a public event in 2010 was covered by a fund at the heart of several criminal charges being faced by suspended senator Mike Duffy, court heard Thursday.

Duffy and the prime minister had their makeup done together ahead of a G8/G10 event on Parliament Hill and the $300 bill was paid by Maple Ridge Media, a company established by Duffy friend Gerald Donohue that the Crown alleges was given $65,000 worth of taxpayer money to help Duffy skirt Senate rules.

Last week, a government source told The Canadian Press that the makeup services Harper received that day weren't paid for by taxpayers.

On Thursday, Jacqueline Lambert — the makeup artist herself — contradicted that assertion on the witness stand.

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More:

http://www.therecord.com/news-story/5560912-duffy-paid-harper-s-makeup-b...                 

 

Debater

Duffy contract covered cost of prime minister’s makeup at G8/G10 event

https://www.telegraphjournal.com/telegraph-journal/story/42053307/

Debater

Duffy dependence: More than 70 Conservative MPs leaned on suspended senator

By Jennifer DitchburnThe Canadian Press

Apr 19 2015

OTTAWA - It seems everyone wanted a piece of Sen. Mike Duffy.

At least 74 former and current Conservative members of Parliament leaned on Duffy at one point or another to appear at their events, record messages for supporters or stump for them on the campaign trail, documents released at the suspended senator's trial indicate.

Duffy also did work for Ontario, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island Tories, and several unsuccessful federal Conservative candidates.

The former broadcaster's daily diaries for 2009-2012, now a courtroom exhibit, illustrate the full extent of Duffy's celebrity status when he was still in the party's good graces.

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More:

http://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2015/04/19/duffy-dependence-more-than-7...

Debater

Son unaware father was using company to pay Duffy expenses, court hears

Company's ex-director says father who made payments had no official role or cheque-signing privileges

Apr 21, 2015

The former director of a construction firm used to pay some of Mike Duffy's Senate expenses says he didn't know his father was using the company to write cheques for services unrelated to the construction business, court heard today.

On the 11th day of Duffy's trial in provincial court in Ottawa, Matthew Donohue, the son of Gerald Donohue, who is expected to be a key witness in the trial, also testified that his father did not have cheque-signing privileges for the company Maple Ridge Media Inc., which later became Ottawa ICF in 2009.

. . .

Duffy awarded contracts valued at around $65,000 to Donohue, who, the RCMP have alleged, did "little or no apparent work." The Crown alleges that Gerald Donohue, through those companies, used that $65,000 to pay for inappropriate or non-parliamentary services for Duffy.

Many of these services, billed to the taxpayer, were paid by cheques from either Maple Ridge Media or, later, Ottawa ICF and signed by Gerald Donohue.

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More:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-trial-son-unaware-father-was-...

Unionist

Harper must be thanking his lucky stars for this irrelevant Duffy sideshow. No "scandal" has ever stuck to Harper, and this penny-ante expense stuff - even if it could be connected with Harper (which after two years, it hasn't) - pales by comparison with the horror stories that he has previously survived.

Let's hope the opposition parties are savvy enough to stop yapping about Duffy and the Senate, and concentrate their fire on the real issues facing the people.

NorthReport

Exactly.

Nothing to see here except the desperation of the Liberals pinning their hopes on Duffy winning the election for them.  

Debater

Sounds like Conservative supporters like North Report are getting nervous.

I don't think the Liberals (or the NDP) are "pinning their hopes on Duffy winning the election for them".

However, the Duffy Trial is causing some damage to Harper's credibility & the CPC brand.

The daily stream of revelations iis exposing things the Harper Cons wanted to stay hidden. . .

Debater

Duffy backroom conduit between big oil and PM?

Vancouver Observer

Apr 22nd, 2015

http://www.vancouverobserver.com/news/duffy-backroom-conduit-between-big...

Debater

Redacted diary reveals oil's hidden route to Harper

April 22nd 2015

Redacted entries in Mike Duffy’s diary suggest he was in regular undisclosed contact with pipeline giant Enbridge during the height of the federal government's scorching attacks on environmental activists and charities in 2012.

The suspended senator’s journal shows a flurry of conversations and emails with or about top-level Enbridge executives, then PMO chief of staff Nigel Wright and the Prime Minister between January and June of 2012, just as the National Energy Board started its hearings on the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline proposal.

During this period, the federal government launched three parliamentary hearings, a senate inquiry and a major Canada Revenue Agency audit initiative focused on the activities of environmental charities, many of which opposed Northern Gateway.

None of the apparent contacts with Duffy were reported by Enbridge to the federal lobbyist registry, and Duffy's office redacted several key mentions of them.

The redacted entries include two exchanges between Prime Minister Harper and Duffy about Enbridge pipeline issues.

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More:

http://www.nationalobserver.com/2015/04/21/news/redacted-diary-reveals-o...

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Debater you get far too much glee out of the misery of others; read John 8:7 again.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Nothing about Duffy on The National tonight.

Debater

Nik Nanos discussed Mike Duffy on CTV Power Play with Don Martin yesterday.  Nanos said that Duffy has damaged Harper's approval ratings.

@niknanos says Harper can thank suspended Sen. Mike Duffy for his drop in preferred PM poll.

https://twitter.com/CTV_PowerPlay/status/590993865097740288

Debater

Mike Duffy's Badly Redacted Diary Suggests Illegal Enbridge Lobbying

04/23/2015

Redacted entries in Mike Duffy’s diary suggest he was in regular undisclosed contact with pipeline giant Enbridge during the height of the federal government's scorching attacks on environmental activists and charities in 2012.

The suspended senator’s journal shows a flurry of conversations and emails with or about top-level Enbridge executives, then PMO chief of staff Nigel Wright and the Prime Minister between January and June of 2012, just as the National Energy Board started its hearings on the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline proposal.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/04/23/mike-duffy-enbridge-diary-harper...

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Debater wrote:

Mike Duffy's Badly Redacted Diary Suggests Illegal Enbridge Lobbying

04/23/2015

Redacted entries in Mike Duffy’s diary suggest he was in regular undisclosed contact with pipeline giant Enbridge during the height of the federal government's scorching attacks on environmental activists and charities in 2012.

The suspended senator’s journal shows a flurry of conversations and emails with or about top-level Enbridge executives, then PMO chief of staff Nigel Wright and the Prime Minister between January and June of 2012, just as the National Energy Board started its hearings on the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline proposal.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/04/23/mike-duffy-enbridge-diary-harper...

Seriously Deabter, John 8:7.

If you won't read it, then stop whining when we critiicize Le Dauphin.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Why does this thread exist? If you go thrrugh the thread postings, it appears that the majoirty of posts have been made by one person. I don't relish the idea Mr. Duffy might go to jail. However, it is more then appropriate to remind people about Adscam here as well. The point, the two main, truly OLD LINE parties have an extensive history of corrution, aarrogance, and privilege. I don't see how this thread in any way contributes to construttive discussion of the current Canadian political environment. I have some first hand experience of how hurtful this is; my departed dad was kept from getting a job by a Manitoba Premier and his Minister for well over a year before that Premier's party's senior insiders told the Premier to back off. I think this is unseemly. I wish this thread would be closed. Its existence in my opinon, serves no useful prupose other then to allow for gloating and the rubbing of the faces of others "in it".

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

I think the Duffy trial is relevant, no matter who is posting information about it.

I am not concerned if Duffy goes to jail. It might give him a bit of a social conscience as we are seeing from Conrad Black.

We have found about illegal lobbying and Enbridge and Nigel Wright, and we would not know this about the Prime Minister if it were not for the Duffy trial. We may find other very important things which will continue to do damage to the Harper brand.

The Liberals are in a really difficult position with this. All they can do is point to the Conservatives, because when people see them they see the same feeders at the trough, coloured red instead of blue.

 

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

M58, I agree, but that is not how this thread is being used, in my opinion. Personally, I've had my fill with the glee some people seem to be taking in watching this man's life be destroyed. He deserves, but I say enough is enough. I still say this thread should be closed.

quizzical

its not like it is being covered in the news out here anyway...

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Sorry Arthur but these privileged people in politics and their rich friends have been gloating at us for centuries.

They used to enslave us. Now they have most of us in financial misery and wage slavery.

I'll have as much sympathy for them as they have had for me.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

montrealer58 wrote:

Sorry Arthur but these privileged people in politics and their rich friends have been gloating at us for centuries.

They used to enslave us. Now they have most of us in financial misery and wage slavery.

I'll have as much sympathy for them as they have had for me.

Don't get me wrong, I think Duffy should suffer, but if he were a Liberal Senator in the same trouble, I am certain this thread wouldn't have been started. Or at least, not by any known LPC partisans on this board. I'm just sayin'. I think the glee being taken in this by some is to say the least, unseemingly.

Sean in Ottawa

Arthur has a point. Can someone direct me to the Mac Harb thread?

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

If he were a Liberal senator, I would be just as pleased. And Duffy is on trial now, so the focus will be on him. Yes, the Liberals need to pounce on any Conservative misdemeanours because they need to pretend that they are different from the Conservatives. Only for long enough to get elected.

You never know, Duffy might actually get the last laugh in all of this. With his miserable salary as a CTV reporter, he might have dealt with a lot of Senators who were formerly his colleagues. Baton Broadcasting was nothing if it was not cheap.

Rex Murphy was blustering on about Character and Conscience tonight. It was more of an Anglican sermon than a political piece. He accused Duffy in stern terms for not having these things. If he is found out not to have had any Character and Conscience period, down the river he will go. But if he is found out to have been clowning Harper with his notes about illegal Enbridge lobbying, Nigel Wright, Gateway, and the Prime Minister, this may be good enough to earn Duffy some stars.

What is funny is that the natural resources business is supposed to belong to the Liberals. It will be interesting to see the Liberal side of this energy corruption as well.

In his broadcasting career, Duffy knew everyone. He always got the story, perhaps because he always had something in his Diary about them he could use for *uh* leverage.

Did Duffy play the fool and act the tool for Harper so he could clown him in the end? Becuse Harper is being clowned good, now even by Joe Oliver. And one thing you don't do to a prickly customer like Harper is clown him. He might Gitmo you.

Debater

Duffy’s lawyer asks for more time to complete trial – during the federal election

April 24, 2015

By Laura Stone

Politics Reporter

Global News

OTTAWA – Mike Duffy’s lawyer has asked for six more weeks of trial – and suggested it take place smack dab in the middle of the federal election campaign.

Donald Bayne told the judge he expects he’ll need an extra three weeks to complete his case on behalf of the suspended former Conservative senator – and asked for another month and a half to be safe.

Bayne suggested this could happen anytime in the fall between September to December.

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More:

http://globalnews.ca/news/1959315/what-rules-mike-duffy-judge-suggests-s...

Pondering

...

Bayne’s request came at the end of a sharp-tongued cross-examination of a key Senate witness, whom Bayne suggested was an “advocate” for the Crown.

Bayne peppered former top Senate finance official Nicole Proulx with questions about four meetings she attended with the Crown and the RCMP, one during Duffy’s trial, even after she refused to meet with the defence team because she said she was too busy.

“You were helping the prosecution,” Bayne told Proulx.

“You’re not an advocate, you’re a witness.”

Proulx said after speaking with her lawyer she decided not to meet with Bayne, and told the court she provided the defence with all the necessary documents.

She then requested a chance to read her agenda to look up the meetings she attended, and court broke early for the weekend.

“Your honour, I’m very uncomfortable with this,” she told the judge.

Ha ha ha, she met with the Crown but refused to meet with the defence. Doesn't look good.

 

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/04/24/senate-officials-rejected_n_7133...

Bayne disagreed with a line of questioning from Neubauer over the nature of Senate rules prior to 2012, saying the prosecutor was asking the witness for an opinion and to address hypotheticals.

Neubauer said he was trying to show that before 2012, there were clear rules in place about what constituted a Senate expense, despite the fact that an updated rule book put out that year added more explicit guidelines than had existed previously.

"That's the whole point, were there any rules at all?" Vaillancourt said.

"And at the end of the day, I hope you have something more substantial than what appears on the platter right now."

The remark prompted Neubauer to question whether the judge has already made up his mind in the case.

The Crown doesn't seem to have much of a case or if they do they better start presenting it.

bekayne

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Arthur has a point. Can someone direct me to the Mac Harb thread?

http://rabble.ca/babble/canadian-politics/senator-mac-harb-subject-rcmp-...

Pondering

bekayne wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Arthur has a point. Can someone direct me to the Mac Harb thread?

http://rabble.ca/babble/canadian-politics/senator-mac-harb-subject-rcmp-...

Mac Harb isn't in court and wasn't a high-powered Ottawa insider at the heart of the Harper government.

The Liberals did not defend Harb they cut him off.

The Liberals did not secretly try to pay Harb's bill and pretend it was him refunding the money.

The fascination with Duffy, as opposed to Wallin, Brazeau and Harb is all the dirt he has on the Conservatives and his apparent determination and ability to bring down the Conservatives with him.

I'm very curious as to the case the Crown intends to make for bribery when they aren't charging Nigel and it seems it is the PMO that was pressuring Duffy to pay the money back and offered to pay it for him when he refused.

Harb is boring in comparison. The sole charge against him is for the fraudulent housing claim.

 

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

I think the $65,000 contract for things Duffy wasn't supposed to get public financing for might be made to stick.

The problem is that the Crown has to define that there ARE senate rules to be broken in the first place.

And having been around Ottawa all of his broadcasting career, you would think Duffy would have a glimmer of a sense of what should not be done. If he was diligent about keeping his Diary, why wouldn't he be diligent about making sure he was not running foul of senate rules?

Something doesn't seem right.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

montrealer58 wrote:

I think the $65,000 contract for things Duffy wasn't supposed to get public financing for might be made to stick.

I agree that this is the most difficult charge to defend. As I understand the evidence, Duffy attempted to put through a regular expense claim for a makeup artist, and was refused, because that was not a proper expense, and he then paid it through this fraudulent consulting contract. In this case, the rules are perfectly clear, and Duffy must have known that he couldn't legally do by the back door something that had been refused by the front door. I don't see how he beats this charge.

Pondering

montrealer58 wrote:

I think the $65,000 contract for things Duffy wasn't supposed to get public financing for might be made to stick.

The problem is that the Crown has to define that there ARE senate rules to be broken in the first place.

And having been around Ottawa all of his broadcasting career, you would think Duffy would have a glimmer of a sense of what should not be done. If he was diligent about keeping his Diary, why wouldn't he be diligent about making sure he was not running foul of senate rules?

Something doesn't seem right.

He was diligent about it. That's why the judge is getting impatient with the Crown. If there are rules stating he can't use his other funds for things refused through another channel the Crown hasn't pointed them out.

The thing that is "not right" is that the rules for Senators don't seem to have changed since 1867. It seems it is up to the Senators  to decide for themselves whether or not an expense is justified.

What surprised me is that partisan activities are an official role of Senators.

The Parliamentary law clerk who drafted the “foundational” standing rules that govern the Senate’s regime for spending and expense claims conceded Wednesday there are virtually no restrictions to prevent Senators from claiming expenses for partisan activities, and also admitted the Senate , while including partisan work as part of every Senator’s job, has no guideline, policy or rule that defines partisan activity.

http://www.hilltimes.com/news/news/2015/04/09/almost-no-rules-to-prevent...

It seems to me that interferes with the Senator's role as sober second thought and regional representation.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

There is not sober second thought coming from the Senate. This is yet one more, status quo meme emenating from the LPC and its supporters. Abolish the Senate!

Debater

The Liberal leader ejected all Senators from the caucus.  They are no longer fundraising or campaigning for the Liberals.

Why not ask the Conservative leader to do the same thing?

Debater

Mike Duffy diary: Conservatives won't discuss his Enbridge conversations

Questions about the substance of suspended Senator Mike Duffy's discussions with the Prime Minister's Office regarding energy company Enbridge remained unanswered following question period Monday.

New Democrat MP Murray Rankin tried for the second day to elicit more information about notes contained in Duffy's diary that suggest he was communicating with the oil and gas company, which is trying to establish a pipeline to the West Coast as well as reverse an existing pipeline to Montreal.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-diary-conservatives-won-t-dis...

 

Debater

Mike Duffy, Stephen Harper disagreed on P.E.I. appointment: Sources

Evidence shows new senator was deeply concerned about residency issues early on

Rosemary Barton

Apr 28, 2015

Mike Duffy was concerned with the issues of eligibility of his Senate seat from almost the very moment he was appointed, and he raised those issues with Prime Minister Stephen Harper, sources tell CBC News.

Duffy was so concerned, he asked Harper if he could represent Ontario, the province where he had lived for three decades.

But sources say the prime minister needed to fill a P.E.I. seat and insisted Duffy represent the Island instead.

The Prime Minister's Office would offer no comment beyond saying the matter is currently in front of the courts.

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More:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-stephen-harper-disagreed-on-p...

 

Debater

VIDEO: Mike Duffy never wanted to be the senator from P.E.I & raised the issue with PM Harper

THE NATIONAL

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hl4glEXZFxY&feature=youtu.be

NorthReport

Nothing to see here folks - there are no Senator rules. Perfect place for Liberals and Conservatives who want to be pigs at the trough.

Debater

The Duffy trial’s smoking gun just blew up in Harper’s face

By Tasha Kheiriddin | May 7, 2015

According to RCMP documents filed at the disgraced senator’s trial, PMO staff didn’t want an audit to determine the legitimacy of Duffy’s spending habits — they wanted to use it as a tool to exonerate their embattled star Senate recruit. “A purpose of this is to put Mike in a different bucket and to prevent him from going squirrely in a bunch of weekend panel shows,” then-PMO Chief of Staff Nigel Wright emailed to his colleagues. The act of obtaining outside legal advice on Duffy’s residency issues was intended to “protect senator Duffy,” according to Senate staffer Chris Montgomery in another exchange.

But since the audit didn’t paint Duffy in a flattering enough light, the report on it had to be, ahem, altered. This was apparently done by Conservative Senators David Tkachuk and Carolyn Stewart Olsen, outside the normal Senate committee process. According to RCMP Cpl. Benoit Jolette, “the report, we’ve learned through the investigation, had made its way to the PMO, to their office, and, I guess, revisions, what they wanted to have written in the report, was done.”

Jill Anne Joseph, the Senate director of the internal audit, was more blunt — particularly when it came to Olsen’s role. “Here she was a member of the audit subcommittee, but her objective was not to get to the truth of the matters and deal with them the way I wanted to deal with them,” Joseph told the RCMP. “Her consideration seemed to be more like, what’s the media going to do with this information?”

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More:

http://www.ipolitics.ca/2015/05/07/the-duffy-trials-smoking-gun-just-ble...

Debater

PMO urged changes to Duffy audit, RCMP officers say

DANIEL LEBLANC

The Globe and Mail

May. 06 2015

The Prime Minister’s Office played a key role in changing the findings of a 2013 audit into Mike Duffy’s living expenses, as part of a strategy to keep the now-suspended senator quiet as the PMO tried to find a solution to questions over the controversial claims, RCMP officers allege in new court documents.

The Senate administration had hired the auditing firm Deloitte to look into the expense claims of senators Patrick Brazeau and Mac Harb, as well as those of Mr. Duffy. But the PMO and senior Conservative officials defended Mr. Duffy in the early stages of the controversy, in order to keep him quiet.

“A purpose of this is to put Mike in a different bucket and to prevent him from going squirrely in a bunch of weekend panel shows,” former PMO chief of staff Nigel Wright said in an e-mail to colleagues on Feb. 7, 2013.

Mr. Wright’s e-mail, which went to PMO colleagues Chris Woodcock, Ray Novak, Andrew MacDougall and Joanne McNamara, added: “Mike is very pleased with this so it will give us a little bit of time if [Conservative senator David Tkachuk] can pull it off.”

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More:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/pmo-urged-changes-to-duffy-...

 

 

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

montrealer58 wrote:
The problem is that the Crown has to define that there ARE senate rules to be broken in the first place.

Constitution Act, 1867 wrote:

23. The Qualifications of a Senator shall be as follows:

  • (5) He shall be resident in the Province for which he is appointed;

Since it's been established that Duffy's primary residence is in Ontario, the trial judge has to decide whether or not Duffy's secondary residence in PEI meets the residency requirement.

If the judge rules that Duffy's secondary residence in PEI meets the residency requirement, then he may get off. If the judge decides that it doesn't, then are not all of Duffy's activities that he was paid for as a Senator illegal?

Though if the judge in the Duffy trial concludes that Duffy did not meet the residency requirement, Duffy would probably appeal to the Supreme Court.

mark_alfred

Nigel Wright begins testifying tomorrow (2015/08/12).  Could be interesting to see if the PMO becomes implicated.

mark_alfred

Well, after day one of it, I get the feeling that his testimony will have no effect upon the election.

Unionist

The Duffy affair - and the Senate affair - exhausted their scandal value ages ago. No one cares. And Harper survives all scandals.

If Mulcair keeps pushing his "abolish the Senate" mantra, voters will wisely wonder what his priorities in life are.

ETA: Umm, sorry to quote myself yet again, but just from this thread:

Unionist, on April 11, 2015, wrote:

The NDP really captured the popular imagination by calling for Senate abolition. And abolishing ATM fees. And lowering credit card interest rates. And of course floor-crossing legislation. Don't discourage them while they're ahead. Victory is nigh!!

Unionist, on April 22, wrote:

Harper must be thanking his lucky stars for this irrelevant Duffy sideshow. No "scandal" has ever stuck to Harper, and this penny-ante expense stuff - even if it could be connected with Harper (which after two years, it hasn't) - pales by comparison with the horror stories that he has previously survived.

Let's hope the opposition parties are savvy enough to stop yapping about Duffy and the Senate, and concentrate their fire on the real issues facing the people.

 

mark_alfred

Day two, lots of coverage.  link

quizzical

i agree with Unionist on this.

there's way more serious shit that Duffy's trial is deflecting from. it's 3 card monty.

mark_alfred

I'm starting to change my mind.  I think this could be very damaging to Harper.  Harper keeps saying that he didn't know and as soon as he found out he fired those who were responsible.  But the evidence that's mounting shows this couldn't be the case, because it seems there was a whole web of the PMO that was involved, including his current chief of staff (to whom Harper is even closer to than he was to Wright).  Also, it seems there was a whole whack of manipulation of the Senate by the PMO. 

jerrym

quizzical wrote:

i agree with Unionist on this.

there's way more serious shit that Duffy's trial is deflecting from. it's 3 card monty.

I disagree. The Duffy trial is becoming more and more Nixonian in nature as emails show it was the PMO that forced Duffy to take the money, even with Duffy raising objections on the day that he received it that he did not want to do this. Harper has kept on all the other PMO boys despite email evidence now that virtually all of them, including current Chief of Staff, Ray Novak, were involved deeply. 

When the Cons claim that Novak did not read 120 emails sent to him by his then boss Wright because they were cced documents and they turn out to be directly addressed to Novak by Wright, all credibility disappears. Every response the Cons give is now being torn to shreds. 

With Duffy's lawyer, Donald Bayne, wanting to drag this out as long as possible because it works in favour of reducing Duffy's legal (certainly not ethical) culpability, this will stretch well into next week and may even create a media feeding frenzy. If it doesn't you can bet all the Opposition parties have tons of ammunition to fire at Harper in the upcoming debates.

It has reached the point the Cons can't even keep their lies straight because there are so many of them. 

With the Cons' economic credibility increasingly in tatters also, the lack of credibility with regards to Duffy further reinforces the question why should we believe this guy on any issue.

Quote:

Top members of Stephen Harper's campaign team, including the most senior staffer in the Prime Minister's Office, were among those told in 2013 that Sen. Mike Duffy didn't pay back his own contested expenses.

But the circle of key advisers kept their lips sealed, even as cabinet ministers told the House of Commons that Duffy had "shown leadership," or that chief of staff Nigel Wright "was the only one involved."

Ray Novak, Harper's current chief of staff, had been told in a direct email that his predecessor, Wright, was preparing to repay $90,000 in Duffy's Senate claims. Among all of Harper's aides, Novak is the longest serving and closest to him personally.

A day earlier, he had participated in part of a conference call involving Duffy's lawyer Janice Payne, the prime minister's lawyer Benjamin Perrin and Wright.

"I think her approach works," Wright wrote only to Novak and Perrin on March 23, 2013. "I will send my cheque on Monday."

The email was filed as evidence in court Thursday during Wright's second day of testimony at Duffy's trial. The former Conservative senator has pleaded not guilty to 31 counts of breach of trust, fraud and bribery.

Novak's name appears as the recipient, the sender or a person copied on more than 100 emails about Duffy exchanged in February-April 2013.

Novak, who is travelling with Harper, refused to speak to reporters. Campaign spokesman Kory Teneycke said Novak never read the mail from Wright, and wasn't aware he was paying Duffy's bill until it emerged in the media.

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/nigel-wright-testify-again-today-mike-duffy-tr...

 

Quote:

During an interview with the RCMP about the senator's expenses, Wright himself said the PMO had discussed a plan that was "basically forcing" Duffy to repay them. 

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-trial-nigel-wright-forced-sen...

 

Quote:

7 key quotes in the Mike Duffy-Nigel Wright emailsCrown files one set of emails, defence another: What did we learn?

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-trial-emails-wright-novak-pmo...

 

Quote:

Mike Duffy then and now: 3 Conservative contradictions

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mike-duffy-then-and-now-3-conservative-c...

 

 

 

mark_alfred

While it's not a clear connection that Harper knew of the $90G payment, there is an email from Ray Novak (Harper's secretary at the time, and now his chief of staff) that Wright initially redacted that showed Harper had knowledge of the Duffy issue, and was weighing in on it.  From a CBC live feed:

CBC live feed wrote:
Bayne [Duffy's lawyer] brings us to a different set of emails.
To an email Wright had redacted as 'privileged and not relevant' the email referred to this morning, from Novak on February 19 (number 127) relating Stephen Harper's thoughts on the Duffy mater.
Wright says the PM and Novak would have been out of Ottawa.
Harper opines on the residency issue, saying that residency is not an issue - "property requirement = residence."
He adds, "this issue is about $'s, not this." In reference to Duffy's problem.
Wright says he thinks he should let the Prime Minister's words speak for themselves.
Perrin [former PMO lawyer] responds with his legal opinion which Bayne summarizes as him saying the Prime Minister's thoughts on residency aren't in accordance with a 'standard legal approach.'

So, seems Harper was advocating something that was not a 'standard legal approach'.  Surprise surprise.

This is great.  Harper has been swamped with questions about this, and thus has not been able to set the agenda.

Northern-54

Reading the email trail provided at the Duffy trial was interesting.  I was particularly struck by the amount of control of Senate proceedings implied by Prime Minister Office staff in a set of emails from February, 2013.  For example, Mr. Wright writes to Patrick Rogers and Benjamin Perrin, “I think we should lay out the approach in a brief memo to the PM.  It would outline the approach we intend to take at Senate committee to settle residency questions, and would append Ben’s guidelines as akin to what the committee would adopt.”  Later, Patrick Rogers responds, “Because the actions of committees are dictated by the Senate, I think we can slam it through despite a Liberal chair in a way that you would approve of.  We’ll draw something up.”  Nigel appears to view his control of the Senate substantial, “Patrick, we are going to need to manage the briefing of the Conservative Senators (including, hopefully Chair) of the Committee.  If the Rules and Procedures committee doesn’t have the right membership, then the Senate by motion should constitute a special committee that will have the right Senators on board.  We cannot rely on the Senate Leader’s office to get this right.”  He even feels free to make suggestions as to what Conservative senators should do on the their committees and that he has control over a committee because of majority Conservative membership, “I wonder if you and Patrick could work to suggest an approach to Chris Montgomery. My earlier suggestion was that the Senate Rules committee (dominated by us) make a residency determination for any Senator who asks for one to be made.”   Nigel even thought he could provide guarantees to Senator Duffy about having his file withdrawn from the Deloitte Review when he says in an email to other politicial aides,  “The Internal Economy Committee will confirm that Senator Duffy has been withdrawn from the Deloitte review [… that understanding is a commitment I will receive from Sens. LeBreton, Tkachuk and Stewart-Olsen]…”

bekayne

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