Round-up: Cheatin’ Tories?

Well, lookie here! The pristine PMSH and his reconstituted Conservative Party appear to have had difficulty understanding the laws of the land regarding the rules for campaign financing.

Robert at My Blahg highlights the CTV story

The Conservative party may have illegally accepted millions in unreported donations last year because it didn’t understand political financing laws

while over at Accidental Deliberations is the Canadian Press story, Tories may have taken in close to $2 million in illegal contributions, along with a list of the sections of the Canada Elections Act the Cons may well have violated.

Meanwhile, in the comments section at My Blahg is a link to another interesting tidbit regarding an Alleged Conservative Blogsphere Scheme which Bound by Gravity also blogged this past January.

Vues d’ici links to the Globe & Mail story, Tories may have broken political financing laws.
What I’ve found most interesting are the comments sections at the blogs.

At Accidental Deliberations I followed a commenter to his blog, Blue Blogging Soapbox where he quotes the CP story and says he is not about to take the word of ‘’ Elections Canada spokewoman Valerie Hache,‘’ apparently because only the Chief Electoral Officer and Election Commisioner [sic] are capable of clarifying this.

A couple of interesting comments over at My Blahg. Here’s #16

Last election we now have them on:

1. using undeclared money (see this thread)
2. publishing pamphets and distributing without identifying the source (see g@m toronto ridings during election)
3. running an undeclared “third-party” fake news outlet
(see National P online, Montreal G, Van Sun, and Me)
4. undeclared pre-writ spending used during the writ (how do you think the CPC paid for all their polling and targeted marketing used *during* the election)

and #19

consider this…

The CPC paid well over million for its phone polls to identify winnable ridings and close polling stations. They continued both the calls and used the reports right up to election day… where does this expense show up in delcared spending???

For those ridings selected for the polling service, the economic cost of detailed polling is around $80,000/riding and the information is used in that riding during the election…. but does the riding delcare the expense??? The calls per riding versus the assigned cost per riding is generally off by about 5 to 1… In some cases no cost is declared as the calling is pre-writ and the only the reports are used post-writ; but according to the canada elections act if you use something during the writ period – even if paid for pre-writ – you have to declare it as an expense.

and, of course, the PS to comment #24

P.S. Does this mean they also stole the last election?

Well, does it?

Update 11:40AM 29Jun06:

* Somena Media is having a good chuckle at the irony of it all and points to Dissonance And Disrespect and Canadian Cynic, who sums up D&D’s remarks.

* Liberal Catnip, once referred to by a right-winger as an Uber-lefty, ends her post with a series of questions that had me laughing: What shall we call this one? DonationGate? We’reJustSoConfusedGate? Don’tBlameUsWe’reToriesGate? Or how about ThereGoesOurMajorityGate?

* Greg at Sinister Thoughts comments on the tie-in with the upcoming Liberal convention.

* Eugene at Le Revue Gauche weighs in with a concise paragraph on the fiscally-challenged Harpercrites. (Heads up: longer than average load time, but worth the wait.)

Update 2:15 AM 30Jun06

* Rambling Socialist nails it — the party that came into power on accountability had no right to talk about accountability — with his pot/kettle post.

Update 11:15 AM 30Jun06

* Best and Better provides a short, annotated ConventionGate round-up.

Update 10:00 PM 30Jun06

* Blog Critics has an excellent essay suggesting that the Cons are proving they can be just as arrogant as any other party and have no conception of what the word accountable means.


14 thoughts on “Round-up: Cheatin’ Tories?

  1. Pre-writ spending is, I thought, outside the limits, and you can’t tell me nobody else did it. I’m not a tax lawyer, but I tend to agree with a commenter at, I think, BBS that as long as the convention cost more than $600/head (food, lodging), there isn’t an issue. If it was only say, $450, then isn’t it only an issue for those contributors that had already maxed out? Since the bulk of contributions were under $200, most of the donors should be okay, and their contributions as well, no? Although I guess the CPC will have a few problems re: reporting/filing. But why has it taken 18 or more months for this to come to light?

    Personally, I think what this REALLY highlights is how complicated our laws have become. Sheesh. Why can’t there be a black & white “this is okay” column beside a “this is not okay” column? Sort of an “election laws for dummies,” if you will.

  2. Candace,
    Harper and his crew already have an “election laws for dummies” in their accountability act.
    The accountability act is not even law yet, and they broke it, never mind existing laws.
    This may get spun into a mere “mistake” but the bottom line is that those three: Baird, Harper and Flaherty are all economists and have a good idea of the laws (or should be expected to).
    Let’s have some accountability here folks, though I realize that the guvmnint will have to dumb it down for the Canadian masses…
    IMHO, I think Harper, Flaherty and Baird need remedial schooling regarding Canada and its laws, electoral governance and the duties of Ministers.
    But whatever you all decide, us dumbass Canadians will go along I guess.
    I wonder, did any of that money go to help Emerson? Now that would truly frost my touque.
    We’ll all find out once Harper and his accountability act hit the road on this issue.

  3. Candice writes: “… and you can’t tell me nobody else did it”

    sounds like a confession… with the faint hope that maybe its ok if someone else maybe did it too.

    BTW, CPoC convention delegates paid their own transporation, lodging, meals, and general costs… the convention fee was nearly all profit to the CPC… and as Election Canada has now judged, the convention was an undeclared political donation to the CPoC… there was no commercial value to the attendees… the attendees paid extra for anything of commercial value… and those are the facts.

  4. Eugene, the “you can’t tell me nobody else did it” has to do with pre-writ spending, not fudging the books on a convention. As for the CPC breaking “their own law” that hasn’t even been passed yet, how does one go about doing that? I thought one of the reasons the media have been saying the Senate would delay enactment was so that the Liberal convention wouldn’t fall under the new rules?

  5. Candace,

    We are talking about current law and the current breaking of the law by the CPoC.

    We know as fact that the CPoC did not declare around 1.7 – 2 million in donations from the CPoC convention. The CPoC has said so and so had Elections Canada.

    If you have allegations that others have done the same then let’s hear it.

    As far as fudging convention books, add this to you list, see post 53 and 54 on:

    Not only did most CPoC members, execs, and MPs know that the registration fee was a donation to the party, some organized a way to have their personal expenses (the extra expenses of travel, logding, meals etc.) become donations… that is to say, expenses beyond the registration fee also became tax deducatable donations. In other words, registration fees donations were not declared by the national office and food and travel, which have a commercial value, became tax deductions for some delegates.

  6. Further to Candice,

    Pre-writ spending is absolutely *not* outside the spending limits if any of its benefit is used during the election.

    Again to the savvy readers… see how the conservatives are worried about this. They did this across the country to pre-spend to try to outspend without going over legislated spending limits. However, most pre-spending items were used during the writ period and Elections Canada is clear on this that those amounts must be included as election spending.

    There is a lot here on a lot of fronts if you dig.

  7. when i read this in the news this morning i was…..not surprised. my mind automatically went to what i could photoshop. tricky dicky’s face on harper’s body? harper with his pants down and a caption saying ‘exposed’?

    everything ‘on the books’ for law is a bit of a hoax. regulation this, regulation that. it’s ok for quebec to call itself a nation, says harper, because it’s legal to. yet there’s no regard in this respect, for the indigenous people of quebec….unless things have changed the quebec seperatist mentaity has been to disregard native rights.

    don’t forget the teaming with bush and howard to stall the un’s indigenous people’s declaration , ‘because it’s only 95%, it needs to be 100%’. ah, excuse me but when was any recent tory or any other party law ever 100%? stockwell’s new gun law has to rate 25%.

    that does it, i’m declaring myself a nation. i’ll apply for diplomatic status and be exempt from any of canada’s laws.

  8. hi berlynn

    you do good work—thanks
    i’m learning lots[although sometimes i wish that i didn’t have to]

  9. Pingback: Anonymous

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