Trudeau government potentially allowed MP under investigation to stay on for 18 months; Quebec Senator

According to a Conservative Senator, the PMO should have known about Raj Grewal's gambling more than a year ago.

Ali Taghva Montreal QC

According to Quebec Sen. Jean-Guy Dagenais and assistant Richard Desmarais, a retired RCMP officer told them he had been informed about a probe regarding Liberal MP Raj Grewal in 2017.

Jean-Guy Dagenais even argued that it would be, "unbelievable” that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office didn’t know at the same time.

“He told us, ‘Just check this guy at the casino. He is spending a lot, he’s under inquiry, and something will happen,’“ Desmarais said in an interview Thursday. “He said, ‘You can go, you will see him, spending his money, he is under an inquiry’ … If the prime minister’s office didn’t know that, it’s unbelievable.”

According to an article from The Whig, "Chantal Gagnon, a spokeswoman for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, referred the Post to an earlier statement saying their office only learned of the gambling situation last week." To that, Mr. Desmarais responded, "It is impossible that the RCMP doesn’t know where he is sitting, on which committee he is acting and everything like that,” “Knowing that, they have to tell the prime minister’s office.” If proven true that the federal government waited, that would be a truly worrying scandal, given the portfolios, Mr. Grewal has managed.

According to the Globe and Mail, NDP MP Nathan Cullen asked Prime Minister Justin Trudeau whether Mr. Grewal "was removed from the finance committee and moved to the health committee in September because of the RCMP investigation into his gambling activities".

Mr. Grewal is also under investigation by the federal Ethics Commissioner for bringing Yusuf Yenilmez, chief executive of construction firm Zgemi Inc., to an event during the Prime Minister’s notorious trip to India. Mr. Yenilmez’s company also paid Mr. Grewal employment income while he was an elected official, and is a co-debtor on a vehicle loan for the former MP.

“He used his access to senior finance officials and money laundering reports to ask very troubling questions,” Mr. Cullen said. “Did the Prime Minister or anyone in his office find those questions so disturbing that they acted upon them?”

Prime Minister Trudeau denied having been aware of Mr. Grewal’s problems before last Wednesday.

Secondly, this is extremely important given the fact that the seat of Raj Grewal is by no means a random riding. It is the riding that NDP party leader Jagmeet Singh largely occupied at the provincial level, and where he planned to originally run. By keeping Raj in parliament for a few more months, the NDP leader became largely trapped and forced to run in the riding of South Burnaby where he may be more likely to lose. If that were to happen, the Liberal party would likely win in a landslide as the already struggling NDP is forced to find a new leader or worse yet, an unsupported leader mere months before the federal election. You'd really have to give it up as a masterpiece in political engineering, but also make you wonder what else the parties have in store for each other in the election Justin Trudeau describes as "nasty" and 'negative.' What do you think about this? Do you believe the PMO or the Senator here? Join the conversation by commenting below!


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