The two women that Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party has recently banished are both stating that the entire SNC-Lavalin affair, which has torpedoed Justin Trudeau’s public image, could have been entirely avoided if the prime minister had simply owned up to his mistakes and apologized for his wrongdoings.
The former AG Wilson-Raybould has stated that Trudeau’s reluctance to apologize for his alleged political interference in a prosecution is key to the SNC-Lavalin affair playing out how it did.
After being shuffled out of her role as AG, a move that Trudeau stated was due to the resignation of MP Scott Brison, JWR told CTV News that she would stay in the PM’s cabinet only under certain conditions. Among those conditions was firing long-time friend and top adviser Gerald Butts, as well as Canada’s top civil servant, Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick, both of whom have stepped down from their positions amidst the SNC fallout.
Bernick and Butts have maintained that they did not act inappropriately, and have both offered contradicitng testimony to the events Wilson-Raybould described in her own testimony.
Wilson-Raybould also wanted Trudeau to apologize, either publicly or before cabinet. Finally, she wanted assurances David Lametti, the new justice minister, would be directed to not authorize a deferred prosecution agreement for SNC-Lavalin.
She states that none of the political woes surrounding Trudeau could have been avoided had Trudeau just apologized, stating that the PM “never took responsibility.” Along with Wilson-Raybould, Jane Philpott is preaching a similar tune.
Philpott, who says she was “stunned” to be ousted from the Liberal caucus, stating that the SNC-Lavalin controversy could have been handled with more care, and contained much earlier with an apology from Trudeau himself. By owning up to one’s mistakes, saving face could have been less of a challenge, as the Liberals now face a steeper hill this coming federal election.
Philpott credits her medical background in decision making, saying that “the sooner you deal [with a serious problem,] the better.”
“Without malice, sometimes errors take place, but you need to own up to the people who may have been harmed and you need to find out why it happened and make sure it never happens again,” she told the CBC.
“I think those lessons could be transferred quite easily into the political sphere, and this could have been taken care of and addressed in a forthright, honest way much earlier.”
Poor optics for Trudeau continue on, and with the Lavalin affair still closeby in the rearview, our PM will need to find a way to clear the air with the public, though for some, it’s definitely already too late.
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