Thursday, March 22, 2007

Is Stockwell counting his last days in office?

Liberals ask RCMP to probe Day nomination
OTTAWA – The Liberals have asked the RCMP to investigate the circumstances around how Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day first secured the nomination in his British Columbia riding.

Liberal MP Mark Holland said Thursday new documents his party happened upon raise serious questions about the matter, and have been forwarded to the national police force.

Back in 2000, Day was the newly elected leader of the Canadian Alliance but did not have a seat in the Commons. MP Jim Hart stepped aside in July to allow Day to run in a byelection, which he won handily that fall.

Shortly afterward, reports circulated that Hart had been paid $50,000 to move aside. The RCMP briefly looked into the matter at the time to determine whether Hart had resigned in exchange for money, which is a criminal offence, but decided against launching a formal investigation.


Another page, a motion apparently voted on by the Canadian Alliance's governing body, approves payment of $20,000 to Hart to pay for his living expenses while he waited to start another job. The motion says the intention was that the party pay half the amount, and the Office of the Leader of the Opposition pay the other half.

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