Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Gomery's First Report

Today, the first report of the Gomery Inquiry was released. The inquiry overseen by Justice Gomery was commissioned to look into the alleged sponsorship scandal. The sponsorship scandal erupted from allegations that the Liberal government under John Chrétien was involved in under-the-table dealing in Quebec. Gomery decided that there is no clear evidence to point to Chrétien’s knowledge of the money transfers; however, Chrétien was found politically responsible for the bigger issue. Gomery found Chrétien responsible for the waste of millions of taxpayer dollars in promoting federalism and the liberal party in Quebec. The current Liberal Prime Minister, Paul Martin, was absolved of any misconduct. The biggest blows of the report came to John Chrétien, Alfonso Gagliano, and Jacques Corriveau. The latter two were given a permanent ban from the Liberal party of Canada.
The commission might not be placing blame on Paul Martin, but the Liberals are in jeopardy as is federalism in general. The scandal has reignited the flames of separation burning in the PQ and Bloc Quebecois. I am afraid the separatist might once again push for an independent Quebec. The inquiry will also put the Liberals (who are already clinging desperately to a minority government) out of power. The Conservatives will most likely win the next election and the Liberal party just has to hope it can cling to as many seats as possible so that they (with the help of the NDP) can tackle down the government.
The minority governments and scandals are making Canadian politics much more exciting and I am looking forward to the next months. Paul Martin is not going to call an election until the second report and if he plays his cards right with the NDP, he will stay in power until April (or later) of next year.
After the conservatives take a minority government I think the atmosphere will become very interesting. There will be a three way split in parliament between the Conservative government, the Liberal and NDP opposition and the Bloc Quebecois. The biggest turn of events will be that the Liberals will be able to hold more voting power as the opposition, since now it will be them and NDP against Conservatives and not the two of them against conservatives and the Bloc.
I will continue to loosely follow the reports in the near future and see where the scandal is taking Canada. I will update more if anything exciting happens.

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