If you think Justin Trudeau is about to apologize just because the ethics commissioner says he violated the ethics law, you don't know your husband. Consumption is not his job, unless it is about historical atrocities with which he has nothing to do. But when it comes to crimes closer to home, he will never deal with them. Yes, he will take full responsibility. Yes, he accepts most of the report. Still, he has nothing to apologize for. "I will not apologize for standing up for Canadian jobs," he said.
Mr Trudeau hopes that the voters are already tired of this scandal. These are just talking heads. He misses the drama. There is no smoking gun, no sex, bags of money, and probably no further explosive revelations to keep the story on the front page until election day. It is unlikely that anyone will face criminal charges or go to prison. Of course, people learned that he was not the open, transparent person he claimed to be. But they learned that months ago, and after his initial shock, his luck gradually revived. A forum poll today puts him back in the door with Andrew Scheer, one of the most boring politicians to ever live. Mr. Scheer would make a bowl of oatmeal charismatic.
The cynicism of the electorate is good for Mr Trudeau's chances. I suspect that by now most people have concluded that everything that happened in the SNC-Lavalin scam was simply a system to work normally. And most people are right. The real news in the Ethics Commissioner's report is not that Mr Trudeau is ethically challenged. This is who is on the insider list and how hard they have worked to protect theirs. The list is a list of names of gold stars: Kevin Lynch, Robert Prihard, Frank Jakobucci (former Supreme Court Justice) and many more.
Take Kevin Lynch, perhaps the most connected man in all of Canada. He is the first name with the most powerful bureaucrats and politicians in the country. He is also chairman of the board of directors of SNC-Lavalin, as well as a former clerk of the secret board, the supreme bureaucrat on earth. He knows how the machine works. Everyone returns their calls.
Mr. Lynch is a straight arrow. No one says it is not. So most of the men (since they are almost all men) are at the root of Canada's corporate-bureaucratic elite. Like Mr. Trudeau, they also believe that what is bad about Quebec Inc. is bad for Canada and I know everyone is right. The point is, it is not their call to make. The question depends on the lawyer, no matter how stubborn, ignorant or cruelly misinformed he or she is. Like it or not, prosecutorial independence is central to the rule of law because without it, the state can govern anyone it likes.
But the most disturbing view in this report is the senior PMO staff, who are thinking with SNC staff, top executives of the Bank of Montreal, and former Supreme Court justices to order the world, as they knew it had to be commissioned . And when Jody Wilson-Reubold refused to play together, Mr. Trudeau fired her.
How could he think that this would not touch him? Possibly because none of his team thought of warning him. They just took it for granted that their team – the right team, obviously doing what is best for the country – will win. After all, all the best people were on their side.
For what it's worth, Mr Trudeau is misguided at every stage of this story. He was misled in February when he said in response to the first Globe story that "the allegations made in the Globe story were false." . Wilson-Reubold's Mind His only motive, he argues, is to better understand her motives for not taking advantage of a deferred prosecution agreement. That must be the reason for him to get his employees to swing her arm high behind her back.
But so what? Who is more interested in the details? Just pants and political panels that no one cares about in doggy summer days. The premiere team estimates that this week's headlines will melt faster than a snowball in August. In addition, they will do a lot to change the subject. Gun crime! Refugee assistance! They will represent Mr Trudeau at his most caring and compassionate.
In the last campaign they conducted, Mr Trudeau was someone who would deal with politics differently. Transparency was one of his vows, as I recall. But now his best hope is to rely on the cynicism of the public. Of course, he has no one to be proud of. But what is a politician? And because of all its flaws, it's probably no worse than everyone else.