The RCMP have charged Mike Duffy with thirty-one offences. But, Michael Harris writes, the PMO should be on trial, not Duffy:
It is the nagging doubt that Duffy’s day in court is a “show trial” that feeds the idea that the Senate itself is the real problem. The leadership in the Senate looks hypocritical, self-aggrandizing, and screamingly at odds with any known concept of equal justice.
For starters, both the Government Leader in the Senate and the Senate Speaker made Auditor General Michael Ferguson’s bad apple list.
And it's their connections to the PMO that really should leave a bad taste in citizens' mouths:
That rattling sound the attentive can hear from the Duffy trial is more bones in the Senate closet soon to be on display. The PMO was directly and intimately involved in undercutting the independence of a supposedly independent parliamentary institution, got Senate reports changed, and interfered in a forensic audit being done for the Senate by Deloitte.
When the Senate had a chance to show its independence and integrity, it slunk away from getting to the bottom of these gross, institutional invasions.
Even though the PMO dispatched Senator Irving Gerstein to ask a buddy at Deloitte if the audit could be stopped if Duffy paid back his disputed housing expenses, the Conservative majority on the Senate’s Internal Economy Committee didn’t act. They refused to demand testimony from Senator Gerstein or the insider he turned to at Deloitte, Michael Runia. To this day, no one can explain how the PMO got the Deloitte audit weeks before it was delivered to a Senate committee.
It's clear that the majority in our House of Sober Second Thought is owned lock, stock and barrel by the PMO. The people in that office are behind the Duffy story. And, so far, they have got away scot free.