In a small way, there is a similarity between Premier Redford’s situation and that of Rob Ford who was so recently judicially tossed out as Mayor of Toronto. Ford’s issue was rather small (though wrong) in using city letterhead to raise $3000 for a cause of his choice. Where Ford really went wrong was when he refused to recuse himself on a council vote on that very matter. Through his own stubborn, foolish pride Ford compounded the matter which eventually led to his ousting.
Alison Redford’s government has been awash in corruption and questionable practices essentially since the day Redford took power. Redford even had her sister essentially laundering tax money to the Progressive Conservative Party through her expenses in a government position.Other scandals kept popping up indicating everything from doctor intimidation to other illegal donations. Despite this though, Redford has always managed to walk that thin line in that while her government is clearly grossly un-ethical, it manages to always stay just within the bounds of legality (due to her own shoddy laws).
With Alberta’s terribly lax laws in regards to ethics, whistle-blowing etc, I am pretty sure that Alison Redford’s personal selection of her ex-husband’s (current friend, heavy party donor and head of her transition team into office) law firm to run a multi-billion dollar action for the government while odious would still have not been found as a conflict of interest.Everything changed when Redford blatantly lied to the legislature!
This lie by Redford is so blatant and bald faced as to be staggering. Despite CBC finding a very solid paper trail proving without doubt that Redford personally made the decision, Redford continues to lie in the legislature and out of it about this whole affair. Redford has turned this from what has become a run of the mill corruption thing with her government and turned it into a full blown contempt of parliament case which is potentially terribly serious.
The graphic below simplifies the whole case. This is not a case of interpretation. Redford is simply lying. The image from facebook is less long winded than I am prone to being but makes the point clearly.
Alison Redford’s lying has put many people into tough positions now. Our current Justice Minister has been bouncing around like a Mexican jumping bean seeking to run as he said “on the same song sheet” as he tries to keep up with the Premier’s stories. The past Justice Minister now is trying to slide more deeply under the bus and the Speaker of the Legislature himself is now in a very awkward position.
The impartiality of Speaker Gene Zwozdesky has been somewhat questionable in what has been an exceedingly raucous session of the legislature. With a clear cut case of the Premier misleading the legislature like this before him, Zwozdesky is truly now put to the test. How the speaker rules on this on coming days will truly indicate whether we still have something of a functional and balanced legislature or not.
Having taken a moderately bad ethics accusation and turned it into a full blown contempt of Parliament issue through bald-faced lying, Redford has proven herself dishonest at the least. Redford has not exactly proven herself all that bright in all of this either. I want neither of the aforementioned shortcomings in my Premier.