Deep Throat advised Woodward and Bernstein to "follow the money" -- because that trail would lead them back to the White House and the plumbers who committed the Watergate burglary. Greg Weston has done that -- and the trail leads back to the PMO. Tom Walkom writes in today's Toronto Star:
For weeks, questions have swirled as to why Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s then chief of staff would give $90,000 of his own money to Mike Duffy, a Conservative senator he barely knew.
Now we have a plausible answer. It seems that former chief of staff Nigel Wright also controlled a secret Conservative Party slush fund that at times contained almost $1 million.
Which meant that he was in a position to repay himself for his generosity.
The Conservatives are busy spinning the line that there was no such slush fund:
Chris Alexander was given the unenviable task of defending the fund on CBC Radio. He said all political parties defray the partisan activities of their leaders, which is true.
He also said, “All of those expenses are reported to Elections Canada.” Which is not true.
And he said that anything the Conservatives do as a party is “overseen as to its appropriateness by Elections Canada.” Which is also not true.
In fact, as an Elections Canada spokesman confirmed Friday, the monitoring body has limited jurisdiction. Parties must reveal all donations to Elections Canada, which then makes the list public. Parties must account for money they spend on activities during the relatively short period of an election campaign.
Like all the president and all his men, Stephen Harper and his acolytes are desperately trying to cover up what was going on. Unfortunately for them, Brent Rathgeber has focused attention on the rot that has accumulated in the Prime Minister's Office.
As he did in 2008 -- when it looked like his government would fall -- Stephen Harper has gone into hiding, desperately looking for a scapegoat -- one that resides outside his party.The difference this time is that it's abundantly clear, even to the Conservative base, that the enemy is within.
It took Nixon awhile to get around to the realisation that there was no way out. He had to resign. My bet is that -- eventually -- Stephen Harper will come to the same realisation.