By John Geddes - Monday, January 21, 2013 - 0 Comments
Brian Mulroney is out of political purgatory and only too happy to tell Canadians (and Stephen Harper) what real leadership is about
His large, impressive head swims into view, as he makes his unhurried way through the luncheon crowd assembling outside the hall of a Fredericton conference centre. That jaw line, which once seemed cut from granite, now looks more moulded from clay. Even with its edges softened by age, though, you would know the profile anywhere. His silver-grey hair is immaculate. The rich hue and perfect drape of his blue suit set him apart—no offence to the menswear purveyors of the New Brunswick capital—from the local businessmen and provincial politicians pressing in to shake his hand, share an old campaign anecdote, and maybe pose for a photo. But what really triggers the memories, good and bad, is his voice. Its bass notes don’t so much cut through as rumble beneath the conversational din. The plummy laugh penetrates to every corner.
And Brian Mulroney has been laughing a lot lately. His one-day, mid-November visit to Fredericton—where he delivered a speech at the lunch, met privately with the provincial government’s cabinet, and spoke to students at St. Thomas University before a reception at its Brian Mulroney Hall—was typical of his extraordinary 2012. At 73, Mulroney spent the year being feted on the 25th anniversary of his Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement, consulted on Quebec by the Prime Minister, who once shunned him, and even being called “a classy individual” by Justin Trudeau. Can it really be less than three years since Justice Jeffrey J. Oliphant’s commission of inquiry found that Mulroney behaved “inappropriately” in taking envelopes containing hundreds of thousands in secret cash payments from a certain German-Canadian arms lobbyist? Continue…
By kadyomalley - Tuesday, January 6, 2009 at 9:40 AM - 47 Comments
UPDATE: Check out the ITQ liveblog of the hearing here.
On Wednesday morning, the Oliphant Commission will open its doors to the public tomorrow for two days of public hearings on “standards of conduct,” which is not, somewhat to ITQ’s regret, a heated debate on whether counsel should be required to wear dress robes and powdered wigs, but to hear from the respective parties on what the Commissioner should take into account when the real hearings get underway later this spring.
It will come as no shock to anyone who has paid even the slightest bit attention to the ongoing saga of the Mulroney/Schreiber affair that the two main antagonists are at loggerheads over the scope of the inquiry, but what what may be somewhat surprising is where the government stands. Here’s a hint – at the moment, the position of the Attorney General of Canada seems to be lot closer to the man they’ve been trying, and failing to deport for the last decade or so than the one who used to inhabit the Prime Minister’s Office. Check out the official ITQ cheat sheet after the jump.