Roundup: Another embattled minister

It looks like Intergovernmental Affairs minister Peter Penashue overspent his campaign limit by some $20,000. Seeing that he won by a mere 79 votes, this could be a Very Big Deal. The problem? The penalty for overspending is a fine of $1000, and maybe three months in jail, which would more likely be served by the official agent, it appears. Add to that the number of people chalking this up with the other incidents in the last election with illegitimate robo-calls or the various irregularities in Etobicoke Centre that led to the Supreme Court challenge. We’ll have to see if Penashue faces any real consequences for the overspending, and if he doesn’t, what kind of precedence that creates.

Omnibus Budget Bill the Second is being tabled and is likely to begin debate on Friday. Jim Flaherty says there will be no surprises (likely a lot of tax code changes) and yes, it will have MP pensions. And please, for the love of all the gods on Olympus, don’t resurrect the inaccurate talking point about the previous bill being a “Trojan Horse” because it was not. If it was a Trojan Horse, you wouldn’t have been able to read the provisions within the bill, but since they were all in the text, well, it’s time to find a different metaphor.

Vic Toews announced new funds for cyber-security yesterday – but refuses to name any countries that might be a threat *cough*China*cough*.

Thomas Mulcair is meeting with Pauline Marois tomorrow, and promises to push the PQ’s issues in Ottawa – so long as they’re not about national unity. Because it’s not like the Sherbrooke Declaration, with its 50-percent-plus-one is good enough to break up the country, or the constant need to out-Bloc the Bloc, is doing likely to have any effect on the national unity file.

After years of saying it would be too expensive to operate two different kinds of search-and-rescue aircraft, the RCAF may end up needing to do just that in order to blunt criticism about a potentially rigged procurement process.

The Roma community in Canada says that a CBSA intelligence report singles them out in blatant racial profiling and provides little in the way of substantiated claims against them.

What’s that? An American court is casting doubt on the validity of Omar Khadr’s conviction? You don’t say!

Fisheries minister Keith Ashfield had a heart attack. He’s going to be covered by Gail Shea – the previous minister – during his convalescence.

Here’s a pretty stinging takedown of MP Kelly Block’s mail out praising the ending of refugee health benefits.

John Ivison looks at how a Marc Garneau Liberal leadership might look. Martha Hall Findlay says that she has now finally – finally!retired her 2006 leadership debt and is now properly contemplating a run at the current leadership. Meanwhile, more speculation about how McGuinty’s former staffer working full-time for the Trudeau campaign throws everyone into a right tizzy.

Here is your recap of last night’s political shows.

And Andrew Coyne looks at reputational power – such as that of the Bank of Canada Governor, or the Auditor General – versus the institutional power of Prime Ministers, and why it is that reputation wins out.