Justin Trudeau Visits Fantastica Again
Atroubled boy dives into a mysterious fantasy world, and so begins yet another fantastical tale of Liberal corruption.
WE-Gate was reportedly born of a telephone call between Prime Minister Trudeau and then Finance Minister Bill Morneau on April 5th, during which the two discussed possible ways to throw some non-existent tax dollars at students who would not have summer jobs during the COVID-19 shutdown.
On April 7th, Morneau’s office put out feelers to WE Charity (possibly because WE had sponsored travel for Morneau and his family on previous occasions, and also employs his daughters) and other organizations, trolling for ideas on ways to spend some money. Two days later, WE lobbed in an unsolicited proposal for a youth entrepreneurship program valued at $14M to Morneau, Youth Minister Bardish Chagger, Small Business Minister Mary Ng, and the PMO.
Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) officials mentioned WE to Finance officials on April 16th, and again to Morneau on April 18th. The following day, ESDC ADM Rachel Wernick contacted Craig Keilburger at WE (for reasons unreported).
On April 20th Morneau’s office contacted WE to discuss the program, and requested a revised proposal with increased scope.
On April 22nd Trudeau announced a $9B student aid package (contributing to the $343B deficit and +$1T debt forecast) which included a volunteer student program – the Canadian Student Service Grant (CSSG) Program. WE submitted a revised proposal to Wernick on the same day. Marc Kielburger said that WE was contacted on April 23rd by the PMO about getting involved; but later back-peddled, saying the contact came the week of April 26 from Wernick, and not the PMO.
Here the plot thickens further.
On April 26th Morneau speaks with Craig Keilburger (about something, perhaps another free trip for the Morneau family), but later testifies that they didn’t discuss CSSG. This is curious because WE had just submitted a revised proposal four days earlier in response to a request from Morneau’s office.
On May 4th WE submitted a third proposal to ESDC.
On May 5th Chagger recommended WE to a special COVID-19 committee, headed by Deputy PM Chrystia Freeland. Trudeau’s Director of Policy and Cabinet Affairs Rick Theis called WE, and WE commenced work the same day. Interesting call.
On May 22nd Cabinet approved awarding WE a sole-source contract based upon a Memorandum to Cabinet (MC) from Chagger arguing “binary choice” (which is highly unusual), and the public service begins negotiating an agreement the following day.
It was reported that although the contract was signed on June 23rd, it came into effect on May 5th (before the PM heard about it). If this sounds fishy, the “backdating” of contracts is generally permissible under Canadian Law…but not however for the purpose of misleading third parties (such as the public) or to circumvent Rules or Legislation (such as the requirement for Cabinet approval).
On August 13th WE registered with the Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying (following questions regarding why they weren’t registered), disclosing forty-three contacts with six different minister’s offices and government departments in the six months prior to the CSSG deal; including twenty-three with Wernick (who ultimately recommended to cabinet that WE be sole-sourced).
The post mortem on WE-Gate begs numerous questions regarding this feculent Liberal maze of political “back-roomery”, including:
- Did Morneau’s office request a proposal from WE on April 7th?
- Were proposals from other entities received?
- What was the subject of Morneau’s April 26th call with Craig K?
- Why did WE start work on May 5th, without a contract, before cabinet approval, before the PM even knew about it, seemingly on the basis of a call from Theis?
- What did Theis say to WE on May 5th? It looks like a $912M oral contract.
- When was the $30M advance payment made to WE?
- Why did WE continue working if Trudeau had indeed “pushed back” on May 8th?
- Why was WE the only option?
- Why was no due diligence done, if Trudeau ordered it?
- Who had the horsepower to helm a binary choice MC through to Cabinet?
A Liberal spin doctor nightmare. Trudeau is asking Canadians to believe that his own policy director (Theis) called WE on May 5th (without his knowledge), and awarded a contract worth almost $1 billion over the phone – and WE felt comfortable proceeding on that basis.
Surely, even GTA voters will see that the fix was in.
On August 17th Bill Morneau was replaced by Freeland, the minister responsible for the COVID-19 Committee that approved WE on that fateful day in May, in what many view as a political blunder by a PM trying to distance himself from the fetid taint of WE-Gate. Those Canadians suffering still from USMCA are hoping that former-journalist Freeland knows more about finance than international trade. All Canadians should question the appointment of a minister with absolutely no legal, financial or business credentials (Freeland studied History and Literature) to the Finance portfolio, especially in a time of unprecedented economic devastation.
On August 18th the PM announced that he had received permission from Governor General Payette to prorogue parliament until September 23rd. Ostensibly to “address a long-term COVID-19 recovery plan”, critics see it as a desperate move to avoid continuing investigation of WE-Gate by shutting down the finance committee.
During a press conference on August 19th Shadow Finance Minister and Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre criticized Trudeau for providing heavily redacted documents relating to WE Charity, dramatically tossing largely black-out pages to the floor in front of cameras. ““Why don’t we ask what was in those pages in a parliamentary committee? Well, I’ll tell you why. Justin Trudeau shut down those parliamentary committees. When did he do it? The same day these documents became public! What a coincidence. The Prime Minister goes to the governor general’s office and says “GG, I’m about to release some very damming information. But I’ve covered it in black ink, and if you’ll just shut down parliament for me today, then none of the opposition politicians can force me to remove that ink and reveal the truth. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a cover-up.”“
Good luck to Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion, the temporarily suspended finance committee, and possibly the RCMP, sorting this mess out.
But…“This is another story, and shall be told another time.”