Dimtri Soudas was due to testify before a HoC committee today. He hinted smugly on CTV's Question Period on Sunday that he would not be appearing before the committee, citing a new policy that Ministers are accountable to Parliament, not staffers. Yeah, they're accountable, except when they're not.
So today in place of Soudas, Conservative attack dog John Baird showed up, with a hastily handwritten sign. Problem is, Soudas is not Baird's staffer -- he's Harper's. I suppose Harper, a man who carefully controls all aspects of his personal appearance, was uncomfortable with the fact that a properly printed sign would not have been ready in time, so he took a pass.
MORE TYPICAL BAIRD PHOTO - NOTE TO PET OWNERS: RABIES KILLS, HAVE YOUR PET VACCINATED NOW
Baird, instead of answering the committee's questions, began talking about why staffers should not have to appear. From today's G&M:
Jay Hill, the government house leader had this to say:
"The tyranny of the opposition majority has turned its attention to the men and women who make up our political staff. Men and women who did not sign up to be tried by a committee – to be humiliated and intimidated by members of Parliament.”Ralph Goodale, the Liberal house leader countered:
“It is another Conservative government policy about secrecy, about preventing accountability, about stifling transparency about muzzling all of the assistants who work for the Prime Minister and various ministers in the cabinet to prohibit their attendance at Parliamentary committees to give evidence or answer questions.Looks like the Harpercrats have added a few new chapters to their dirty tricks manual. Vote for this post at Progressive Bloggers
The arrogance and the hypocrisy of this position are breathtaking.”