When Brian Mulroney appeared before a parliamentary committee to explain his connections to Karl Heinz Schreiber, Stephen Harper let it be known that Mulroney was persona non grata. Yesterday, Mulroney got his revenge. Interviewed for CTV's Power Play, he took Harper apart.
On the prime minister's public spat with Beverley McLachlin, he said:
You don't get into a slagging contest with the chief justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, even if you thought that he or she was wrong. You don't do that.
On Harper's attitude toward the United Nations:
When Canada, for the first time in our history, loses a vote at the United Nations to become a member of the Security Council ... to Portugal, which was on the verge of bankruptcy at the time, you should look in the mirror and say: 'Houston, I think we have a problem.
On Harper's foreign policy:
[It] has to be enveloped in a broader and more generous sweep that takes in Canadian traditions and Canadian history in a much more viable way. We're in the big leagues ... so we have to conduct ourselves in that way. We can't be out-riders.
On Harper's relationship with he United States:
He also chastised Harper for his relationship with U.S. President Barack Obama, suggesting the prime minister doesn't have the kind of close ties that allow him to call the Oval Office and ask for bilateral backup on a number of issues.
"If you can't do that, you don't have much clout internationally. The relationship with the United States is something the prime minister alone has to nurture the same way he would tend to the most delicate flowers in a garden. It's that important."
The interview appeared on the same day that Paul Martin and Joe Clark signed onto an initiative to improve the relationship between First Nations and the federal government.
With three former prime ministers -- two of them Conservatives -- standing in public opposition to him, Mr. Harper must be experiencing the same sinking feeling Caesar felt when he discovered all those senators gathering around him and Brutus wielding that dagger.