Sign in to follow this  

All About Justin / The good, the bad and the ugly

Recommended Posts

There seems to be no interest in what SNC- Lavalin was actually doing in Libya or who bribed who and to what end or purpose. If there is, I have been unable to find it.

They (the company) had deep ties to the Gaddafi family and apparently had contract security on the ground while OUP operations were ongoing. I, for one, am not the least bit interested in whether the PMO tried to suppress a simple bribery prosecution in the "land of bribes", I have no doubt bribes were paid and no doubt the PMO wanted a settlement option as would I in JT's place..... but, and it's a great big honking BUT:

I want to know what SNC - Lavalin was up to Libya, how much the government new about those operations and if the pressure not to prosecute was done with the foreknowledge of those operations and if those operations (themselves) were illegal or even treasonous under Canadian law. None of this makes sense to me and for that reason I smell rat....

Edited by Wolfhunter
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, Jaydee said:

“ Trudeau supports women, so long as they remain quiet and do exactly what he says.”

I can't help but see all of this as surface fluff and deflection from the real issue. The more fluffy the reporting, the more Liberals seek to protect the company, and the more it centres on PMO interference the more suspicious I become. If this were a simple bribe in support of obtaining a construction contract and JT sought to limit the punishment in recognition that bribes are a way of life there, I would be in full support of the action taken.... and that's pretty much a first for me. The more the spectre of racism and feminism presents, the more I believe none of it and the more I think that's exactly what they want us to obsess about.

Edited by Wolfhunter

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is exactly how Trudeau works.....the whole groper incident died a quick death because the accuser didn’t want to pursue the incident (was she paid off??)....the pm finally acknowledged that his recollection was different than the accuser, she must have been confused.

The former justice minister is muzzled for solicitor/client privilege, so it’s just the pms version of the story.

He has had the luxury of never been challenged,debated, or speaking under oath on these issues 


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The world is getting to know Justin better and here is one report from the BBC

Jody Wilson-Raybould: Three ways this could be a problem for Trudeau

By Jessica Murphy BBC News, Toronto
Jody Wilson-Raybould poses with Prime Minister Justin TrudeauImage copyright Reuters Image caption Jody Wilson-Raybould, seen here with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, has so far declined to comment

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is under pressure following a report last week alleging political interference in a corruption case against engineering giant SNC-Lavalin.

The Globe and Mail newspaper reported, citing unnamed sources, that someone in the prime minister's office pressured former justice minister and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to push for a legal favour for the Canadian firm.

Canada's independent ethics commissioner, who advises politicians on how avoid to conflicts between public duties and private interests and investigates possible contraventions, has launched an examination into those allegations.

Mr Trudeau has denied anything improper happened, saying the government followed all the rules in its handling of the matter.

But in a shock move, Ms Wilson-Raybould suddenly resigned from cabinet, catching Mr Trudeau off guard.


Now, with a few months to go before the next federal election, opposition parties smell blood in the water and are tossing around terms like "cover up".

In summary: it has escalated quickly into a major headache for the prime minister and the Liberal government.Here are three reasons this could prove a problem for Mr Trudeau as he seeks re-election this autumn.

1. Message of 'Real Change' tarnished

When he swept into power in 2015, Mr Trudeau promised "real change" for Canadians with a commitment his party would be open and transparent and increase trust in democracy and democratic institutions.

Now, there are claims someone in the prime minister's office (PMO) improperly pressured the former attorney general to intervene in a case involving a prominent firm that employs thousands and has deep roots Quebec - a province expected to be a tough battleground in this year's federal election.

In 2015, SNC-Lavalin was charged with offering approximately C$48m ($36m; £28m) in bribes to Libyan officials between 2001 and 2011.

It is alleged that Ms Wilson-Raybould was asked to push the Public Prosecution Service of Canada - an independent authority whose main objective is to prosecute federal offences - to ask for leniency for the firm.

SNC-Lavalin headquarters in MontrealImage copyright Reuters Image caption SNC-Lavalin headquarters in Montreal

SNC-Lavalin, which has declined to comment on any of the reports about alleged PMO interference, has been open about wanting to enter into a remediation agreement, saying it has changed its ways.

The agreement - similar to regimes in the US and the UK - essentially suspends prosecution while allowing a firm to sign on to an agreement that could see it face alternative terms or conditions, like penalties or enhanced compliance measures.

The fact the Liberal government brought in the remediation agreement regime in 2018 as part of a massive budget bill - following lobbying efforts by the company - has not helped with optics.

Nor has the decision this week by the House of Commons justice committee, which has a Liberal majority, to reject a push by opposition parties to have Ms Wilson-Raybould and some of Mr Trudeau's senior aides appear.

Whatever comes out of this affair - whether there was any wrongdoing and, if so, by whom - it will be hard for the Liberals to shake the sense that little has actually changed in political Ottawa.

2. Indigenous relations in peril

One of Mr Trudeau's main pledges for his mandate was a "full reconciliation" with Canada's indigenous peoples.

When Ms Wilson-Raybould was first sworn into Cabinet in 2015, she was heralded as the first indigenous justice minister, a symbolic milestone and a sign of Mr Trudeau's commitment to that reconciliation.

Ms Wilson-Raybould, a lawyer by training, is the daughter of hereditary chief Bill Wilson, a politician who helped push former prime minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Mr Trudeau's father, to enshrine indigenous rights in Canada's constitution.

Then last month, she was shuffled out of the justice portfolio and into veteran's affairs, a move widely seen as a demotion.

Her decision to quit cabinet this week suggests that, by the end, little love was lost between her and the prime minister.

In her resignation letter, she proffered her admiration and respect for veterans and thanked "all Canadians", her officials, and her staff - but offered no words of praise for the Liberal leader.

Nor did Mr Trudeau thank her for her service when he addressed her departure.Presentational white space

Since Ms Wilson-Raybould resignation, Mr Trudeau's pledge on reconciliation - already being questioned by First Nations leaders - was further challenged.

Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde said in a statement that he "is concerned about the many unanswered questions about Jody Wilson-Raybould's departure and this is echoed by many First Nations across the country".

Ms Wilson-Raybould's father pulled no punches, posting online that his daughter "was demoted because she would not 'play ball' with the Big Boys who run the Liberal Party".

The former cabinet minister gave no reasons for her surprise decision to step down and has so far declined to comment, citing solicitor-client privilege.

In her role as attorney general, she served as the chief law officer of the Crown and was responsible for conducting all litigation for the federal government.

3. Feminist credentials challenged

Mr Trudeau is a self-described feminist and has used his time as prime minister to push for gender equality.

Now, adversaries are accusing him of throwing a prominent female politician under the bus.

At a news conference following his minister's resignation, Mr Trudeau said he was "puzzled" by her departure, adding it was her responsibility to come to him if she had concerns about the SNC-Lavalin matter, and that she never did.

This came on the heels of anonymous government sources and pundits suggesting to the media that Ms Wilson-Raybould was someone who was "difficult".

Criticism came from outside his party as well as inside.

One Liberal minister showed public support for her former colleague online.Report

Presentational white space

Another Liberal MP one tweeted: "When women speak up and out, they are always going to be labelled. Go ahead. Label away".

Presentational white space

The Union of BC Indian Chiefs called on the prime minister to "immediately and categorically publicly condemn the racist and sexist innuendo" about Ms Wilson-Raybould.

A number of indigenous scholars came forward to decry her "character assassination".

"This feels very familiar to many women across the country, now rolling their eyes, recognising this for the stereotypical cheap shots against women who beg to differ," they wrote.

Opposition parties also jumped into the fray.

Conservative party deputy leader Lisa Raitt told journalists in Ottawa on Wednesday that Ms Wilson-Raybould's "reputation has been dragged through the mud, the Liberal mud."

New Democrat MP Niki Ashton said on Twitter she was "disgusted" by Mr Trudeau's "condescension".

Amidst all of this, Ms Wilson-Raybould has yet to speak publicly, though she has given plenty of hints she is willing to tell her side of the story.

In a statement released after she left justice, she cautioned that the "system of justice [must] be free from even the perception of political interference".

She has also been on a streak of liking supportive tweets.

In her resignation letter, she said she was in the process of obtaining advice from a former Supreme Court justice on what she is legally permitted to discuss.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting. Trudeau is caught with his pants down in possibly the biggest scandal this government has seen. YET...for some reason, Conservative support drops for exposing the truth?

Canadians obviously love lies, pain and suffering. The more I read about the present day mentality in Canadian society,  the more I like my dog.


Edited by Jaydee

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Never under estimate the gullibility  of Canadians.....Ontario is a sad example during the mcguinty/Wynne years....spend like crazy to buy votes, be everything to everybody without regard to balance. The perverse logic is that the liberals realize that the more they spend and therefore appeal to voters, the harder it is for the cons to clean up the mess, and the more vilified they will become.

We need a balanced budget law. 

Watching trudeau news conference this am and he is blaming Raybould Wilson cabinet shift on departure of weasel Brison (who after saying he resigned to spend more time with his family, just accepted a VP position with BMO in Toronto,but I digress). ....... So if she was so valued as female indigenous member, why not leave her in place and give the veteran file to Sajan, as he has just done?

  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Truth or fiction, who do we believe? Will we ever hear her side of the story?

Did SNC-Lavalin play a role in the last cabinet shuffle? 'Wide range of factors' did, Trudeau says

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau opened the door to more questions this morning about his meetings with former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould in the fall about the SNC-Lavalin prosecution and his reasons for shuffling her out of that role.

PM pressed if the SNC-Lavalin affair played a role in shuffling Wilson-Raybould out of justice

CBC News · Posted: Feb 15, 2019 10:54 AM ET | Last Updated: 6 minutes ago
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, right, continues to be dogged by questions about the cabinet move and subsequent resignation of former justice minister and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould. (Canadian Press)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau opened the door to more questions this morning about his meetings with former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould in the fall about the SNC-Lavalin prosecution and his reasons for shuffling her out of that role.

Trudeau said Wilson-Raybould, who resigned from cabinet earlier this week, asked him if he was going to offer direction following "many discussions" his government was having about the Quebec engineering firm's fraud and bribery case, including with Quebec premiers, MPs and the company's representatives.

"There were many discussions going on, which is why Jody Wilson-Raybould asked me if I was directing her or going to direct her to take a particular decision and I of course said no, that it was her decision to make and I expected her to make it," Trudeau told reporters during a BlackBerry funding announcement in the Ottawa suburb of Kanata.

"Obviously as a government we take very seriously our responsibility of standing up for jobs, of protecting jobs, of growing the economy, of making sure that there are good jobs right across the country as there are with SNC-Lavalin, but as we do that we always need to make sure we're standing up for the rule of law and protecting the independence of our justice system."

Since the story broke in the Globe and Mail late last week, Trudeau has denied Wilson-Raybould, who was moved into the Veterans Affairs portfolio last month, was pressured to tell the director of public prosecutions to make what's called a  "deferred prosecution agreement" to avoid taking SNC-Lavalin to trial on bribery and fraud charges in relation to contracts in Libya.

Trudeau said that last cabinet shuffle was triggered by former Treasury Board President Scott Brison's sudden resignation at Christmas.

"If Scott Brison had not stepped down from cabinet, Jody Wilson-Raybould would still be minister of justice and attorney general," he said.

But when pressed if the SNC-Lavalin affair played a role in reassigning Wilson-Raybould out of the justice role, he said there are a "wide range of factors" to consider.

"Anytime one makes a decision to shift members of cabinet, there always a wide range of factors that go into making that decision," Trudeau said.

He also wouldn't answer questions about what Wilson-Raybould told him when she tendered her resignation, just that he accepts her decision even if he doesn't understand it.

When asked if Wilson-Raybould might have interpreted his comments as undue pressure, he repeated that it was her responsibility to raise those concerns.

"If the minister or anyone else felt undue pressure or felt that we were not living up to our own high standards of defence of the rule of law and our judicial system and judicial independence, it was their responsibility to come forward."

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

‘Tendentious’ —

SNC-Lavalin discussion was out of bounds

  • National Post (Latest Edition)
  • 16 Feb 2019
  • Andrew Coyne

Consider solicitor-client privilege officially waived. 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 their conversation, plainly so is she. Perhaps, indeed, that is what the prime minister anticipates. The strategy would appear to be to reduce the whole business to the murky ambiguities of private conversations. (Maybe she thought she was being pressured, but I didn’t think I was pressuring her!)

And yet this is something of a red herring. It doesn’t much matter whether she was directed or pressured or badgered or cajoled, if the action being discussed was out of bounds to begin with.

Suppose, that is, the prime minister did no more than politely ask whether she might consider — though of course it’s entirely up to you — prevailing upon the director of public prosecutions to set aside fraud and corruption charges against the Quebec construction giant in favour of the newly minted alternative of a remediation agreement. That would still be highly improper. Because she would have been asked to do something she could not legally do. And if she could, the DPP could not legally act as ordered.

Let’s take the last point first. The director of public prosecutions, Kathleen Roussel, it has been widely reported, decided not to offer SNC-Lavalin the remediation agreement it had so feverishly, and successfully, lobbied for. But in fact she may have had no choice. The relevant provision (sect. 715.3) of the Criminal Code sets out a long list of “conditions” that must be present and “factors” prosecutors must consider before they can even enter negotiations on such an agreement; another list sets out the “mandatory contents” of the agreement itself.

First, prosecutors “must” consider “the circumstances in which the act or omission that forms the basis of the offence was brought to the attention of investigative authorities,” in the service of one of the legislation’s key objectives, “to encourage voluntary disclosure of the wrongdoing.”

But SNC-Lavalin didn’t voluntarily disclose that it allegedly paid bribes of $48 million to Libyan government officials and defrauded various organizations in the country of $130 million. The matter only came to light after a lengthy police investigation.

Second, the agreement must include “the organization’s admission of responsibility” for the alleged offence. Has SNC-Lavalin explicitly admitted corporate responsibility in the Libyan affair? A lawyer friend who has closely followed the case can find no example of it, in any public statement. It has dismissed the charges against it as “without merit,” insisting any alleged crimes were the work of a few rogue executives “who left the company long ago.” Perhaps that weighed heavily in the director’s deliberations.

Finally, there is sect. 715.32 (3) of the Code, under the heading “Factors not to consider.” For offences under section 3 or 4 of the Corruption of Foreign Public Officials Act, it reads — SNC-Lavalin was charged with one count of corruption under sect. 3(1)(b) of the act, along with one count of fraud — “the prosecutor must not consider,” inter alia, “the national economic interest.” (This is not only a matter of domestic law. It is a word for word transposition of our obligations under the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials.)

So its defenders’ stated rationale for sparing SNC-Lavalin from prosecution — the dire consequences for jobs and the economy should the company be convicted, and presumably collapse — is not only economically suspect (SNC-Lavalin is not the only employer in the construction industry, nor would the work for which it has contracted disappear just because the company did) and morally dubious. It’s expressly precluded in law.

The DPP was not only within her rights, then, to refuse to negotiate a remediation agreement. She would arguably be breaking the law if she did.

Suppose that were not true. Could the attorney general order her to? That, too, is far from clear. Under the law the attorney general is required to sign off on a prosecutor’s decision to negotiate a remediation agreement. But the prosecutor needs no such consent to decline to negotiate; neither is there anything in the law that says the attorney general can order her to.

This is not contradicted, as another lawyer friend points out, by that much-quoted provision in the Director of Public Prosecutions Act — the one obliging the attorney general to make public any order “with respect to the initiation or conduct” of “any specific prosecution.” Whatever limit that places on the AG’s ability to influence the “conduct” of a prosecution, it would seem to grant no power to stop one after it has started, still less to order a remediation agreement be pursued in its place.

If the attorney general can’t instruct the DPP to go easy on SNC-Lavalin, and if the DPP declines to do so on her own, what on earth was there for the prime minister and the attorney general to discuss? This is especially pertinent in light of the general obligation on all public officeholders, as described in the federal Conflict of Interest and Post Employment Code: that they should not merely obey the law, but “perform their official duties and arrange their private affairs in a manner that will bear the closest scrutiny.”

The public should not be put in the position of having to parse the precise meaning of the prime minister’s words, or those of his staff, to know if they stayed within legal or ethical bounds. Whether they crossed the line, or just tiptoed up to it, isn’t really the issue: they shouldn’t have come anywhere near it.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

There have been so many trudeau gaffes, we stumble along and forget about last weeks crisis (China?) or his flippant remarks, like poor people don’t pay money manager agrees with him:



In the first scenario, each parent made $22,650 for a household income of $45,300. Based on the Ernst & Young personal tax calculator, the household should pay a total of $4,564 in federal and provincial income tax.

This income level lines up at the 20th percentile mark outlined by the Fraser Institute — or exactly in the middle of the bottom 40 per cent in terms of household income.

But this household actually receives $14,758 from government. Although the Ernst & Young calculator suggests it should pay $4,564 in tax, and the Fraser Institute says it pays a small amount of taxes, it actually gets tax-free benefits of $19,321.96.

These benefits consist of $17,485.80 from the Canada Child Benefit; $1,278.72 from Ontario Trillium Benefits (including Ontario Energy credit, Northern Ontario energy credit and Ontario sales tax credit); and a $557.44 GST/HST tax credit.

Of course, not every household looks like this or has three children, but the numbers for this household are quite staggering. It effectively does not pay any tax, and then receives $14,758 tax free from other Canadian taxpayers.



Just in case you wonder how low income families do it, and where your taxes go.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Another one bites the dust to protect the idiot !!

Trudeau's principal secretary Gerald Butts resigns!


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 a criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin.

In a statement, Butts unequivocally denies the accusation that he or anyone else in the office improperly pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to help the Montreal engineering giant avoid a criminal case on corruption and bribery charges related to government contracts in Libya.

Nevertheless, Butts says the allegation is distracting from the "vital work" Trudeau is doing so it's in the best interests of the Prime Minister's Office for him to step aside.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

No question' Jody Wilson-Raybould will tell the truth about why she quit, says her father 

Chief Bill Wilson says when his daughter speaks up, it 'could very well topple a government'


Jody Wilson-Raybould will undoubtedly "come forthright and honest and tell exactly what went on" between her and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, says the former justice minister's father.

Wilson-Raybould quit the Liberal cabinet Tuesday, days after the Globe and Mail reported she was pressured by the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) to help Quebec-based engineering firm SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution on bribery and fraud charges in relation to contracts in Libya between 2001 and 2011. 

Trudeau denies the allegations and Wilson-Raybould has, so far, remained tight-lipped.

But her father Bill Wilson, a Kwakwaka'wakw hereditary chief, says he knows she will tell Canadians the truth because she was raised with integrity by two strong Indigenous women.

Here is part of his conversation with As It Happens host Carol Off. 

Chief Wilson you just heard the prime minister say that if your daughter had a problem, she didn't make those concerns known to him, and it was up to her to do so. What do you say to him?

I think he's full of baloney, obviously. 

For him to boldface tell the Canadian public that my daughter is a liar, to me, is as big a farce as his commitment to Aboriginal people. 

I certainly hope that we can get to the bottom of this, not just as an Aboriginal person and not just as the father of the former justice minister, but as a Canadian citizen. Because the foundation of the rule of law, as far as I'm concerned — and I'm trained in the law — has been violated.

Is he going to scapegoat a woman who happens to be a Native person, who happens to be a trailblazer, for mistakes made either by him directly or indirectly by his people?

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Jaydee said:

Another one bites the dust to protect the idiot !!

Trudeau's principal secretary Gerald Butts resigns!


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 a criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin.

In a statement, Butts unequivocally denies the accusation that he or anyone else in the office improperly pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to help the Montreal engineering giant avoid a criminal case on corruption and bribery charges related to government contracts in Libya.

Nevertheless, Butts says the allegation is distracting from the "vital work" Trudeau is doing so it's in the best interests of the Prime Minister's Office for him to step aside.

I don't remember any one saying that he was thought to be involved.  Is this because he may be or is he just taking one for his long time friend.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

My $$$$$ says Butts’ the fall guy to take try and take the heat off Trudeau. Can’t wait for Jody Wilson - Raybould to open up. 

‘What ever the reason why he resigned, it’s a reason for Canadians to celebrate. He helped destroy Ontario, then continued the carnage in Ottawa. Good Riddance !


Edited by Jaydee
  • Thanks 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

 Ontario saved itself from the Liberals. Will it save the country from Trudeau?

“ Trudeau government leaks support in wake of SNC-Lavalin, Wilson-Raybould matter: Ipsos poll “


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.

“This is the worst couple of weeks the PM has had since the India trip,” said Darrell Bricker, CEO of polling firm Ipsos. “The biggest problem is that it hits at what gives the Liberal Party its appeal: the prime minister.”

READ MORE: Charges against SNC-Lavalin explained — and how the PMO allegedly got involved

Ipsos was in the field last week, after revelations surfaced that, last fall, while she was justice minister, Jody Wilson-Raybould felt that unnamed individuals in the prime minister’s office were pressuring her to intervene in a criminal court case in favour of Quebec-based engineering giant SNC-Lavalin. Those allegations were first reported by the Globe and Mail, citing unnamed sources.

If she did feel pressured, she did not act and did not intervene on behalf of SNC-Lavalin. But a few months later, she was shuffled out of her job as justice minister and attorney general and into the job of veterans affairs minister.

Then, last week, as Liberals themselves seemed divided over the optics of seeing the country’s first-ever Indigenous justice minister being shuffled aside for what appeared to be craven political calculations, Wilson-Raybould stepped down from cabinet altogether.

Meanwhile, all through the week, Trudeau and other Liberals struggled to explain what had happened while Wilson-Raybould announced she had retained a former Supreme Court justice to provide her with advice about what, if anything, she might say about the whole matter.

Voters took notice.

Ipsos found that, among the 1,002 Canadians it surveyed online from Thursday through to Monday, nearly half or 49 per cent said they were aware of this rapidly shifting story involving SNC Lavalin, Trudeau and Wilson-Raybould.

And it appears many are changing their opinion of the government as a result.

READ MORE: Justin Trudeau’s top adviser Gerald Butts resigns amid SNC-Lavalin affair

Support for the Trudeau Liberals is now at 34 per cent, down four percentage points, from a poll Ipsos did in December. In the 2015 election, the Trudeau Liberals won their commanding majority with 39 per cent of the vote.

Scheer’s Conservatives appear to have benefited from this slide. That party is now at 36 per cent support, up three points since the end of 2018.


The big trouble spot is now Ontario, where the Tories have a six point lead over the Liberals,” said Bricker. “The way the vote breaks in Ontario suggests that the Tories are doing well in the 905, where the Liberals won their majority in 2015.”

The NDP and its leader Jagmeet Singh, meanwhile, continue to languish, with 17 per cent support right now versus 18 per cent at year-end.


The poll was out of the field before Monday afternoon’s bombshell news that Gerald Butts had quit his post as the prime minister’s principal secretary. Butts, one of Trudeau’s closest friends, had played a critical role in the revival of Liberal fortune and was, along with Trudeau’s chief of staff Katie Telford, central to Trudeau administration. Butts said he had done nothing wrong but was resigning to avoid being a further distraction to the government’s agenda.


In any event, Ipsos found that even before that additional turmoil, voter approval of the Trudeau government had dropped nine points since the beginning of the year down to 42 per cent in its most recent pulse-taking.

Trudeau’s own personal approval rating is now two points lower than it was after his disastrous trip to India this time last year.

“Those who strongly disapprove of his performance now outnumber those who strongly approve by a margin of four to one,” Bricker said.

READ MORE: Halifax artist apologizes for controversial cartoon of Jody Wilson-Raybould

And yet, Trudeau is still doing better than his two main rivals, Scheer and Singh, who continue to have lower approval ratings than Trudeau.

“All is not bad for Trudeau,” Bricker said. “When assessed head to head with his major rivals, Scheer and Singh, he still does well on specific leadership attributes. Although the gap appears to be closing now.”

And just 38 per cent of those surveyed believe the Trudeau Liberals deserve re-election, while 62 per cent agreed that it was time to give another party a chance at governing.


A margin-of-error could not be calculated for this poll as the sample surveyed was not drawn randomly. That said, Ipsos says the accuracy of its polls can be gauged using a statistical measure known as a credibility interval. Applying this technique to this poll, Ipsos believes this poll would be accurate to within 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, compared to a poll of all Canadian adults

Exclusive Global News Ipsos polls are protected by copyright. The information and/or data may only be rebroadcast or republished with full and proper credit and attribution to “Global News Ipsos.” This poll was conducted between Feb. 14 and Feb. 18, with a sample of 1,002 Canadians from Ipsos’ online panel. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. This poll is accurate to within +/ – 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadian adults been polled.

Edited by Jaydee

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Malcolm said:

I don't remember any one saying that he was thought to be involved.  Is this because he may be or is he just taking one for his long time friend.

Gerald Butts is trying to be a martyr. Voters are smarter than that


In the latest development in the story involving the Prime Minister’s Office, Jody Wilson-Raybould and SNC-Lavalin, Gerald Butts has resigned. This is big news but not totally unexpected, given the magnitude of the political crisis. Someone had to go. In his departing statement via Twitter, the principal secretary to the Prime Minister denied that he or anyone else in the PMO had put pressure on Ms. Wilson-Raybould, in her role as attorney-general, for a deferred prosecution agreement for SNC-Lavalin.

In the time since The Globe broke the story less than two weeks ago, observers have been speculating as to whose head would roll. In the context of the Trudeau PMO, there is no bigger player than Gerry Butts. He’s known to the country as the Prime Minister’s confidant, his right hand, and his most trusted political adviser. His resignation is significant – but won’t do anything to help the Liberals.

Mr. Butts seemed to offer his resignation as a sacrifice. It appears to be a peace offering to voters: if I give myself, can we forget this ever happened? There is no new information in his statement, no admission of guilt on his or anyone else’s part, and no further clarity on the issues at hand. In this light, Mr. Butts’s departure likely won’t help make the issue go away for the Liberals. On the contrary, it might open new questions as to why he took it upon himself to walk away.

The story will continue to play out, so the real question is: What will happen to the Liberals now?


Under Mr. Butts’s tenure, the Liberal Party of Canada underwent significant transformation. It used to be that the Liberals were known as one of only two alternatives to govern the country. Some even called them Canada’s “natural governing party.” Mr. Butts was at the helm of the party’s attempts to push itself into a post-partisan era where all would be welcome under the Liberal tent. For example, in the selection process that chose Mr. Trudeau as leader in 2013, the party moved somewhat away from the concept of party membership to opening up voting to supporters of the party as well as members. Historically, one of the major (if not the main) perks of party membership was the exclusive privilege of voting to choose the leader. The Liberals’ departure from this was at least symbolically significant.

Once Mr. Trudeau assumed the leadership of the party, he moved quickly to disassociate himself and the Liberal members of Parliament from Liberal senators. And, once he became Prime Minister, he took steps to remove partisanship from the Senate altogether through a new appointments system. Though it is difficult to argue against removing blind patronage from the Senate (or any institution, for that matter), one effect of this change was to introduce a degree of unpredictability in the Liberal government’s pursuit of its policy plans. The government cannot count on support in the Senate, since it has severed ties with senators who identify as Liberals.

Further, upon assuming the leadership of the party, Mr. Trudeau embarked on a campaign to recruit a number of high-profile star candidates. This strategy was likely beneficial in the Liberals’ decisive win in 2015, but the fact remains that many of these candidates do not have deep ties to the Liberal Party. Instead, many of them had no connection to partisan politics whatsoever and no loyalty to the Liberals in particular.

Are we are seeing some of the implications of the Liberals’ move away from traditional party politics? Elected members are talking to the media about feeling pressure not to speak up during caucus meetings. Several caucus members have tweeted in solidarity with Ms. Wilson-Raybould. Long-time Liberals, including Mark Eyking, have confirmed that they will not seek re-election. Much of the press surrounding the SNC-Lavalin story is focused on the extent to which the accusations against the PMO are off brand. True story. But party runs deeper than brand. In the current climate, what is left of Liberal voter loyalty? Will that save the Liberals in the next election?

There is, and has been for a long time, a palpable sense of hostility and distrust toward political parties in Canada and elsewhere. Partisanship has become a dirty word. But party loyalty could be essential to electoral victory in 2019, especially if the brand has been tarnished.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

McLeans really know how to write a headline !!

“ The hole that Gerry Butts leaves behind “

Stephen Maher: The second act of l'affaire SNC-Lavalin could be devastating for Trudeau, and it's not clear he'll be better off without his trusted advisor.

Last week, I wrote here that Justin Trudeau needed a fall guy to take the blame in l’affaire SNC-Lavalin. Today, we learned who that fall guy is: principal secretary Gerald Butts, a friend and political ally of Trudeau since the two were shaggy undergrads at McGill University.

Trudeau needed to throw the mob a head, to release pressure, allow the government to show that it’s done something, appease his rattled caucus and get a bit of room to manoeuvre.

Butts’s departure certainly serves a short-term political goal, allowing Trudeau to signal that he is regrouping for the election ahead, but we are likely only at the beginning of the second act of l’Affaire SNC-Lavalin, and it is not clear that Trudeau will be better off without Butts, his capable and trusted lieutenant, in the scenes as yet unwritten.

There have been three big unforced errors in Trudeau’s government: the Aga Khan trip, the passage to India and this much more serious business, the allegation that Trudeau, Butts or someone working for them pressured Jody Wilson-Raybould to end the fraud prosecution of SNC-Lavalin.

The Aga Khan trip demonstrated bad judgment from Trudeau, in that he was excessively secretive and insufficiently lawyerly about a legal question, which resulted in a finding that he violated the ethics code by cavorting with a billionaire, hardly the best message for a government that got elected promising to act in the interests of the middle class and those working hard to join it.

READ MORE: Are these the ‘answers’ of a Prime Minister who’s done nothing wrong?

But Trudeau was hardly the first politician to struggle to understand that you don’t stop being a politician when you are on vacation.

Then there was the passage to India, the drawn-out subcontinental family trip where Trudeau behaved like a celebrity—like someone whose costume changes would be anticipated like those of a British prince—and not a politician, whose primary concern ought to be practical business. Still, that looked to be the kind of thing that you could put down to narcissism and high spirits, the kind of thing his team could fix once they were faced with such glaring evidence of their miscalculation.

Both incidents made me question the relationship between Trudeau and Butts, and Trudeau and chief of staff Katie Telford.

I knew Butts and Telford before Trudeau’s election as experienced and savvy political operatives, people who possessed better judgment than was displayed in either of these misbegotten voyages. I wrote at the time that it was possible they were too close to Trudeau to give him the stern warnings he needed.

This third large unforced error is different in kind and degree from the first two, which were most worrying not because of the fallout, which was containable, but because they hinted at sloppy thinking in the highest office of the land.

This SNC-Lavalin story is leagues worse and could bring down the government. Until the Globe and Mail’s Bob Fife broke this story, Trudeau looked like he was headed for a fairly easy re-election campaign. With the NDP going nowhere, and Andrew Scheer distracted by Maxime Bernier, things looked pretty good for Trudeau. That is much less certain today, after the resignation of Butts, for two reasons.

First, it suggests that there are more shoes to drop, that whatever conversation Wilson-Raybould and Butts had about the prosecution of SNC-Lavalin may be difficult to explain.

In his resignation letter, Butts wrote that “I categorically deny the accusation that I or anyone else in [Trudeau’s] office pressured Ms. Wilson-Raybould. We honoured the unique role of the Attorney General.”

It seems likely that Wilson-Raybould will eventually give a different version of her conversation with Butts. We don’t know when that will happen, what she will say or how voters, ethics commissioners or other lawful authorities will weigh the different stories, but the implications could hardly be more serious, since political actors are not supposed to interfere in prosecutions, no matter how many lobbyists a company hires, or how many engineers it employs in, ahem, vote-rich Quebec.

Secondly, the departure of Butts means that Trudeau will not have him by his side, for the first time in his career.

Opponents and critics liked to mock the relationship, calling Gerald Prime Minister Butts, and suggesting he was the marionette pulling the strings of the empty-headed puppet in the big job. Whatever the truth of their relationship, it has worked pretty well. When they started on this project, Trudeau was the third party critic for amateur sport. He now has a worldwide brand. Everybody knows Butts was a key part of that process, the result of many years of planning and plot hatching. Now he is gone, and he will leave a huge hole.

In this way, this dismal saga resembles the Mike Duffy affair—another Fife scoop, by the way—although this is potentially more serious.

The Duffy saga forced out chief of staff Nigel Wright, who, like Butts, was someone with a serious Rolodex and an impressive resume before he entered government, someone who could get calls returned because of who he was, not his job title. Without him, Harper seemed to lean too much on the advice of a bickering palace guard that could not warn him away from his worst instincts.

Depending on how this saga plays out, on what Canadians end up believing about what Butts said to Wilson-Raybould, this government could already be doomed, careening toward the date with voters without a hope of winning.

If, on the other hand, the facts are not so bad, Trudeau may be able to staunch the bleeding and change the subject.

To do that, he will have to find someone capable to replace Butts and pay heed to whatever stern warnings that person delivers.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Jaydee said:

Voters are smarter than that


I do not believe that.

If it was true Justin would not be Prime Minister in the first place.

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this