Thursday, November 15, 2007

Harper government's actions strange on the Mulroney/Schreiber matter

Strange considering they claim to have nothing to do with the matter. Consider this reported fact from yesterday:
Then, early this year, the Conservative government closed an internal investigation into whether the Mulroney settlement should have been reconsidered, in light of $300,000 in cash payments paid by Mr. Schreiber to the former prime minister. Mr. Mulroney has said the payments were to help Mr. Schreiber start a pasta business and he did nothing wrong.
They closed an internal investigation when neither of the two Harper Justice Ministers to date has been permitted to view briefing materials that were requested on the file? That's quite strange.

Now consider the views of Canadians on whether the Mulroney cash payments should be investigated:
When respondents were asked whether they supported examining the allegations, 67 per cent said yes and 22 per cent no.

Among Conservative members, 57 per cent wanted the matter investigated, while 32 per cent were against the idea. Liberals were slightly higher than the national average, with 74 per cent in support and 17 per cent against.
When nobody was looking, the Conservatives quietly tried to brush a potential problem for them and a matter of great public interest under the rug and make sure it stayed there. But when the Mulroney/Schreiber dealings became a matter of public knowledge, via KarlheinzSchreiber's affidavit and recent reporting, suddenly they protest concern and it's investigation time all over again. And Harper's new talking point is intended to deflect attention from his own government's actions in the matter:
During question period Wednesday, Liberal Leader Stephane Dion asked if Harper would "commit to a full public inquiry that includes himself, his government and his minister of justice."

Harper shot back that "sooner or later it will dawn on even the leader of the Liberal party that the events didn't occur under this government."
Yet Harper and his government seem to have gone to great lengths to ensure that no one would ever review the $2 million Mulroney settlement paid by taxpayers. By putting an end to the above noted internal investigation, by failing to act on the Schreiber letters for months, by pushing the Schreiber extradition and by insulating Ministers from the PM on down to any information on the matter, their actions certainly give the impression that they've done something wrong.

Secrecy, stalling, stifling. Not the actions of an accountable, clean government with nothing to hide.