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Saturday, June 7, 2014

When does parliamentary abuse rise to the level of criminal activity?

The CBC reports that “The [federal] NDP is expected to face a blistering new report from House of Commons administration on Monday into its use of satellite offices outside of Ottawa.”

The report goes on to say, “Sources tell CBC that Commons administration officials will present an independent analysis of NDP satellite office expenses and billings to the secretive all-party Board of Internal Economy.”

And this, “The House Administration will also decide if parliamentary funds were improperly used for party work. One source said the report will be damaging to the NDP.” [My italics.]

So what will happen if the report is “damaging to the NDP?” Will the Board of Internal Economy act on its own to decide what the consequences should be? Or will this internal parliamentary group pass the evidence on to the RCMP so a professional policing agency can investigate if laws have been broken?

If allegations in the media are close to being correct, a breach of the public trust could have occurred at the highest level of the Official Opposition and perhaps by the NDP’s leader.

If there is even a hint of criminal activity, I hope the all-party Board of Internal Economy will ask legal authorities to investigate the findings and clear the air.

I worry about this for, when Liberal MPs were found to have made incorrect claims for housing allowances, they were allowed to quietly pay the money back. The RCMP probably should have been called in then.

Let’s hope we don’t see a similar whitewash.

When irregularities regarding senators’ expenses first came to light, the NDP themselves called for an RCMP investigation. But, perhaps, members of the House see themselves as being above the law.

1 comment — This is a moderated blog and comments will appear when approved. Please don’t resubmit if your comment doesn’t appear immediately, and please do not post material that is obscene, harassing, defamatory, or otherwise objectionable.

  1. Harper was in contempt of Parliament for misleading the House of Commons. Nothing happened to him.

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