Roundup: ClusterDuff contradictions

In the wake of Thursday’s ClusterDuff revelations, people have been questioning the Prime Minister’s various statements to date about the affair – things like how no members of his staff were aware of Nigel Wright’s intentions to pay Mike Duffy’s expenses for him – and that in turn leads to questions about whether or not Harper has misled parliament. Not that it would be the first time for that particular practice, mind you. You can see those court documents here and here. Paul Wells recalls similar incidents in the past where the party paid out big money to make problems go away, and how that got them into trouble then too.

And if you’re keeping score, Senator Mac Harb has now repaid $51,000 in expenses “under protest” and continues his quest for judicial review.

Environment minister Peter Kent put a cryptic post up on his Facebook page that sounds like he’s making peace with being demoted out of cabinet – if that’s what the PM decides to do. It’s a curious tactic to make this kind of public statement, and one wonders if he’s daring the PM to not demote him, or if it is just a graceful exit from cabinet.

A poll that the Conservatives used to justify the union transparency bill is now being brought up before the polling standards association. It is alleged that the question and its preamble were geared to get the 83 percent support rate that was eventually cited by MPs in support of the bill.

After a court battle, a protocol between the RCMP and Justice Department has been made public, which appears to show that civil litigators in the department could gain access to information that the RCMP obtained in its criminal investigations, but without going through proper legal channels.

The RCMP Public Complaints Commissioner is going to look into those seizures of firearms in High River when the RCMP found them in plain sight in evacuated homes. RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson wants the investigation because of his alarm at the media portrayals of the events.

While testing the submarine HMCS Windsor continues to go ahead, a faulty generator aboard means that it’ll remain laid up longer than planning, and that the Navy will miss its deadline of having three of its submarines operational by year’s end.

Enbridge says it will take three years to get its 117 non-compliant pipeline pumping stations up to NEB code.

Newly independent MP Brent Rathgeber praises the role of the Senate in his newest blog post, but still thinks an elected Upper Chamber would be better. His reasoning is most of the way to a more status-quo position, and I think that once it becomes clear that Senate elections would create 105 new backbenchers who owe more to the party for their fortunes than an appointed body does (Senators get more independent the longer they’re in office, and loyalty to the PM that appointed them disappears pretty quickly once that PM is no longer on the scene), Rathgeber may hopefully come around to being more supportive of the status quo.

Andrew Leach looks at the meaning of the Alberta government signing onto the Energy East Memorandum of Understanding.

Philippe Lagassé reminds us that the royal succession issue is not actually settled in Canada as we await the birth of the royal heir.

Aaron Wherry sits down with Ontario premier Kathleen Wynne.

And Laura Stone has lunch with Senator Hugh Segal about talks about what happened with Bill C-377. Segal doesn’t see himself as a maverick, and was surprised at how much support his amendment to gut the bill actually got.