Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Ottawa Circus

On Tuesday, Karl Heinz Schreiber had his second day of testimony before the parliamentary ethics committee. Once again while providing enough testimony to keep politicians interested he stated that the $300,000 being investigated had nothing to do with the Airbus scandal. If Schreiber as the key witness sticks to his story, the public inquiry will not throw any dirt on the Conservatives and could be opened to investigate his relationship with the Liberals in 1993/1994.

Liberal chair of the committee, Paul Szabo started Tuesday with a statement apologizing for an incident where Schreiber under police escort to his home to view documents had his pants fall down. Police did not provide him with a belt which is normally taken away in prison. Szabo then went on to chastise those who referred to the hearings as a circus by elaborating the political and legal importance of the committee.

The self righteous attitude of Szabo and co-chair Pat Martin (NDP) speak volumes for why this committee has turned into a circus. They had to apologize over an incident they had no control over. It would not come as a surprise if they launched an inquiry into the events surround Schreiber's pants. Was this an intentional attempt to discredit the star witness?

The committee may have the legal authority to conduct an investigation. There are better mechanisms to deal with this issue including the RCMP and a public inquiry. If Szabo and Martin are not careful they may end up being caught with their own pants down (figuratively of course)

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