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April 18th, 2016

NDP Reality Check: Flexible Liberal Ethics

When is an ethics code more of a suggestion than a rule?

When you're the Liberal Minister of Justice, as it turns out.

The rules that the Liberals made banning selling access to Ministers are clear:

"There should be no preferential access to government, or appearance of preferential access, accorded to individuals or organizations because they have made financial contributions to politicians and political parties." "Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries should ensure that the solicitation of political contributions on their behalf does not target departmental stakeholders [...]"
  • Open and Accountable Government, November 2015

Yet a $500-per-person private fundraiser to meet Jody Wilson-Raybould, hosted by a Bay Street law firm, advertised to the legal community, which touts her "extraordinary mandate" and gushes that attendees are "fortunate to have secured an evening of her time"?

That's just fine with the Minister – and the Prime Minister.

Even the ethically-challenged Liberal Premier of Ontario has recognized that selling access to government is problematic, and has canceled private fundraisers for herself and all ministers.

If the federal Liberals can't even live up to Kathleen Wynne's ethical standards, it's going to be a long four years indeed.