Call in the Mounties, that’s what I’ve been saying since Feb. 10.
Now Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is renewing his call for the RCMP to investigate the SNC-Lavalin affair.
“I believe I speak for millions of Canadians by requesting that you use all the resources at your disposal to investigate this matter, not only so that justice is done but so that it is seen to be done,” Scheer said.
When this story broke, the RCMP refused to confirm anything regarding the story, even that they were looking into it.
Then last week the Mounties changed their language and said they were planning to “examine this matter carefully.”
That should be enough to set off alarm bells throughout the PMO. If that is the case, you wouldn’t know it from Trudeau’s response.
“The role of any prime minister is to defend the people of Canada and to defend jobs, that’s exactly what we did while at the same time respecting the independence and integrity of our judicial system,” Trudeau said at a news conference on Quebec City.
Pardon my ignorance but when did breaking the law become a way of defending Canadian jobs or “respecting the independence and integrity of our judicial system.”
How on earth can someone claim that they are respecting our judicial system while at the same time saying they did nothing wrong in the the SNC-Lavalin affair?
The PM clearly, as the ethics commissioner report states, attempted to change the course of a criminal investigation so that SNC-Lavalin would not face criminal charges for bribery and corruption.
To that Trudeau will only say that he should have done things differently without actually admitting that he did anything wrong.
“We realize that the situation that occurred over the last year should have occurred differently,” Trudeau said Monday.
What exactly should have been done differently? That is a question that Trudeau won’t answer despite admitting he should have acted differently.
“Yes, absolutely, and I’ve often said we should have acted differently,” Trudeau said Monday.
Should he have not pushed the attorney general to change her mind?
Well, that is something he won’t admit to despite the fact that it is the main finding of the ethics commissioner’s report that Trudeau says he accepts but will not act on because he disagrees with it.
Yet, as Scheer points out, Trudeau is likely in violation of the Criminal Code violation of obstruction of justice.
“A willful attempt to, ‘obstruct, pervert, or defeat the course of justice in a judicial proceeding,’” Scheer said on Monday.
“We know he broke the law,” Scheer said, “Now we need to know if he committed a crime.”
Scheer is not wrong to ask that question even as he tells the RCMP that it is up to them to decide on criminal charges.
“I wish only to note, as I did in February, that it is contrary to Section 139 of the Criminal Code for anybody to ‘obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice,’” Scheer said Monday.
“The powerful and politically connected absolutely cannot be above the law. The law must be for all.”
That is what is ultimately at issue here.
Is Canada a country that decides who to prosecute or let free from criminal charges based on who they know in the PMO? That is what Trudeau attempted to bring into being.
If connections to the prime minister’s office is how we decide who is prosecuted and who is not then we have bigger problems ahead of us than the SNC-Lavalin scandal.
Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2019