The spin stops here. It’s no longer up to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to tell us whether or not his Bahamas trip didn’t pass the smell test. It’s also out of the hands of his supporters and detractors alike.
Now it’s up to the ethics commissioner. Mary Dawson has launched an investigation into Trudeau’s trip and the travel arrangements surrounding it.
A copy of a letter provided to Postmedia reveals the watchdog thinks there is grounds to believe Trudeau violated two sections of the Conflict of Interest Act.
The first will be for scoring a free holiday from Aga Khan, the wealthy leader of the Ismaili Muslims, whose organization is a registered lobbyist with the federal government that has received grants from the government.
The second is that he may have broken the rule about ministers using private aircrafts. While Trudeau took a government plane to Nassau, he took Khan’s helicopter from there to the island.
Trudeau pledged to do politics differently and he’s sure doing just that… even though this probably isn’t what the voters had in mind. He’s now the first PM to be investigated by this independent watchdog.
The office has only been around for a decade, so Stephen Harper was the only other PM around for it. However for all the hysterical negative language we heard about the former PM, he was never officially investigated by anything.
It all started off so well for the PM. Thrust into the limelight thanks to his good name and great looks, Trudeau rose from third party leader to majority prime minister. A little more than a year ago slogans like “real change” and “because it’s 2015” made him the darling of Canadians and even the world.
How the mighty have fallen. Trudeau is now tainted. First, his fond words for Cuban dictator Fidel Castro left moderates at home and abroad scratching their heads. Now he’s in a conflict of interest scandal.
This all could have been avoided by checking in with the ethics commissioner first. But he didn’t. And now he’s digging in his heels.
We knew the honeymoon would come to an end. We just didn’t expect reality would hit him this hard.
Ottawa Sun by Sun Staff
Jan 16th 2017