Ruby Dhalla, a take-no-prisoners partisan Liberal politician, now finds herself being called to account for unproven allegations that show no signs of going away. For many who have followed her rise to power within Grit party ranks, this is considered a sort of rough justice.
So often before, when the opposition has gone after Conservatives for unproven allegations of wrongdoing, Ms. Dhalla has been front and centre in Grit attacks. Ever so ready to put the negative spin on Tory actions, she has relentlessly carried the attack against her political opponents. It isn’t any wonder then that there is little sympathy being shown for her plight.
Bob Rae, the apparent Liberal point man on this file, has been noticeably restrained in his defence of Ms. Dhalla. His very careful, rather tepid observation was, “She [Ms. Dhalla] feels very strongly that the allegations against her are not true.” Ouch!
MP Judy Sgro, former immigration minister, is apparently the only Grit speaking out publicly for Ms. Dhalla; other fellow caucus members have, for the most part, remained silent. Perhaps Ms. Sgro is more sympathetic because she knows first hand what it’s like to face a storm of negative publicity. In 2004-05, while she was immigration minister, Sgro was accused of using temporary residence permits as political favours. She stepped down as minister, but was cleared later of any wrongdoing.
And what of Michael Ignatieff?
This morning I accepted Ruby Dhalla's resignation as Youth & Multiculturalism Critic. Ms. Dhalla will continue to serve as the Liberal Member of Parliament for Brampton-Springdale. I look forward to a determination of the facts regarding her family's experience with live-in caregivers.
A written statement, not given in person. Hardly a ringing endorsement for someone who, in 2006, was the Ignatieff Leadership Campaign’s national co-chair.
I can see no way this exploding scandal can end any way but badly for Ms. Dhalla and her family. The allegations, if true, are serious enough to land someone in jail.
Now Ms. Dhalla is left to fight on alone—virtually abandoned by her political colleagues. She won’t be the first politician to learn the lesson that what goes around, comes around.Ω