EDITORIAL: Integrity at stake in Canadian politics

The report by an ethics watchdog that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau violated the Conflict of Interest Act is another blow to Canadian politics.

We know that Canadians will disagree and will fight tooth and nail on issues from the environment to the economy to taxes and regulations.

But we ask that all of our elected representatives, from the first-term local councillor to the PM, and everyone in his office, follow the guidelines and rules.

The SNC-Lavalin affair has been a mess from the start. The company, which happily took money from dictators and thugs abroad and which has been embroiled in scandal for years, tried to shelter under the Liberal government as investigators circled.

They found the PMO particularly eager to offer that shelter.

A scandal about elected officials or government officers using their post for expensive travel, fine foods, or even a log splitter is odious enough.

Trudeau’s government, on the other hand, has brought the criminal justice system into disrepute, something far more serious.

How can we trust the prime minister and the government of Canada when we know that they were willing to meddle in a criminal prosecution? If the powerful expect to be shielded from blind justice, then there is no real justice to be found.

Meanwhile, MP Jody Wilson-Raybould, who stuck to her guns, was kicked out of the party and faces a fight to keep her seat.

The person with integrity may not be in the House of Commons next year. But the PM who breached ethics laws still sits as leader of the country. It’s an ugly day in Canadian politics.

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