Angus Challenges Tories To Clean Up Lobbying
December 13th, 2011 - 7:37pm
It’s time the Conservative government shut down the loopholes in the lobbying act. This is the message from New Democratic Ethics Critic Charlie Angus in the wake of a damning report by the lobbying commissioner on the Rahim Jaffer scandal. Although Commissioner Karen Shepherd found numerous breaches of the lobbying act, she has no power to take action.
Angus says this is unacceptable. “How many prosecutions have there been over the last 25 years for improper lobbying? Zero! The government has been giving out get out of jail free cards every time.”
If the lobbying commissioner finds that improper lobbying is taking place, she is obligated to suspend the investigation and turn it over to the RCMP. However, the RCMP has never followed through on any investigation. Angus says this is creating a massive escape hatch for lobbyists.
“The RCMP has rubber-stamped every single case. When we try to bring the RCMP before the Ethics Committee to explain this extreme lassitude, the government puts up roadblocks. What do they have to hide?”
Angus says the Jaffer case raises major questions about the failure of the Conservative government to stand up for accountability.
“Once again we see that it’s a case of who you know in the PMO.”