National Newswatch

The Jody Wilson-Raybould solution

Mar 30 2019 — Christie Blatchford — They’re thugs – the senior people in the office of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the clerk of the privy council and the nation’s top bureaucrat, the people in the office of Finance Minister Bill Morneau — or so close as to be indistinguishable from them. I refer to their collective behaviour around the SNC-Lavalin imbroglio, […]

Don’t blame SNC-Lavalin for lobbying so hard. Blame the Liberals for how they handled it

Mar 20 2019 — Christie Blatchford — Not quite dead yet, that SNC-Lavalin imbroglio. The Liberal-dominated justice committee did its best this week, slamming shut the door on any further hearings, least of all God forbid recalling the deposed attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has done his best too, steadily stonewalling opposition and media questions with inane and disingenuous […]

Liberals shut down SNC probe with dazzling duplicity

Mar 19 2019 — Christie Blatchford — It was just one more perfectly predictable, almost perfectly staged, extended selfie in the life of official Ottawa. Budget day in the nation’s capital, the cable news networks filled with spinners spinning, many if not most of them photogenic partisans and “strategic communications” specialists doing the bidding of the parties for which they or their […]

An ignominious finale for country’s top civil servant

Mar 18 2019 — Christie Blatchford — A week after news of the SNC-Lavalin imbroglio broke, Clerk of the Privy Council Michael Wernick gave a speech. It was about a week before he testified for the first time at the House of Commons justice committee, where his opening remarks seemed unduly lurid for the country’s top civil servant. In particular, I refer […]

Judgment against SNC-Lavalin affirms the need for an independent attorney general

Mar 8 2019 — Christie Blatchford — Scorecard: Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Kathleen Roussel and deposed attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould, who so resolutely backed her, 1, SNC-Lavalin 0. That’s the bottom line of a stinging Federal Court of Canada decision released Friday. It’s a major victory for the DPP and Wilson-Raybould, affirming the importance and need both for the attorney general’s […]

Trudeau reveals his poor grasp of the justice system

Mar 7 2019 — Christie Blatchford — A month to the day that the scandal first broke, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has managed the improbable — both confirming key details of the deposed attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould’s testimony (i.e., she was telling the truth) and revealing his own shallow grasp of what constitutes improper interference with the justice system and its highest […]

Women were invited to Trudeau’s cabinet table, but expected to play by old boys’ rules

Mar 4 2019 — Christie Blatchford — Does Justin Trudeau have a problem with women? That’s one of what I see as three possible explanations for the bombshell announcement Monday from Jane Philpott, the ethical pushback from Jody Wilson-Raybould over SNC-Lavalin and the recent decision of the formidable Liberal MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes not to run in the next election. Either the PM […]

Why all this effort by the Liberal government on behalf of SNC?

Feb 28 2019 — Christie Blatchford — As an experienced criminal court reporter, I have watched dozens and dozens of cross-examinations, and rarely have they not been what the great American jurist John Henry Wigmore said they were: “The greatest legal engine ever invented for the discovery of truth.” The deposed Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould was hardly exposed to a court-style cross […]

Today sounded and felt like a death knell for the Liberal government

Feb 27 2019 — Christie Blatchford — Where to begin? Well, it sounded and felt like a death knell for the Liberal government of Justin Trudeau. As Jody Wilson-Raybould, the deposed federal justice minister and attorney-general, read aloud her opening statement at the justice committee Wednesday, with breathtaking clarity and intelligence, the room (and likely living rooms across the country) was still. […]

The question remains: Why didn’t Wilson-Raybould resign?

Feb 23 2019 — Christie Blatchford — It is my experience that truth is most often found in the middle, or as the ancient Greek philosopher Democritus said rather more poetically, “in the depths.” With that lens, imagining just for a minute that truth generally lies between extremes, consider again the SNC-Lavalin/Jody Wilson-Raybould business. (The caveat is that, speaking of depths, I […]

In appreciation of the magnificent Michael Wernick

Feb 21 2019 — Christie Blatchford — Into what sometimes seems the lair of the mealy-mouthed, there came Michael Wernick, the plain-talking Clerk of the Privy Council and the top civil servant in the country. The 37-year career public servant was the third witness to testify Thursday at the justice committee allegedly examining the SNC-Lavalin affair and whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, […]

Norman and Vance — comrades in arms, foes in the courtroom

Jan 30 2019 — Christie Blatchford — Born in the same year, to military families, Jon Vance and Mark Norman followed separate career tracks as rising stars, Vance in the army, Norman in the navy, until they ended up, respectively, as the Nos. 1 and 2 in the Canadian Forces. They would have worked together intimately, and likely found themselves, long-suffering spouses […]