The importance of nuance

Today, provincial New Democrat legislator John Horgan continued his campaign to shut the revolving door between the government relations industry and the provincial legislature. During question period, Mr. Horgan asked Finance Minister Carole Taylor whether she thought it was time to introduce uniform restrictions that would legally prohibit post-employment lobbying by political aides. At issue: as reported yesterday by Public Eye, Minister Taylor's senior aide Max Logan has left to become a government relations and members services director or the Retail Council of Canada. Minister Taylor has said neither she nor her office will have any contact with Mr. Logan for a year - but other aides and senior bureaucrats haven't been subject to the same restrictions. Despite that inequality, though, Minister Taylor continued to remaining silent on whether a law governing such activities is necessary, simply telling Mr. Horgan that "every case is different."

7 Comments

Can you state categorically that NDP members and insiders never take positions of influence as a result of their political affilliations?
(And, do you promise to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth?)

Oh the wacky world of lobbying. What will happen next?

Someone may want to ask Mr. Horgan what type of work he did following his role as a political staffer for the NDP.

I wouldn't want to suggest he is being a hypocrite but....

What's truly hilarious about this is that John Horgan, he of the "close the revolving door" argument, was a well-placed political aide in the late 1990's, and then, when he left, he became... (gasp) a consultant!!! I guess it's typical of John "do as I say, not as I do" Horgan, but it's still a little shocking.

Given the multiple conflicts Campbell Liberals find themselves in these days, its no wonder they can't grasp the most simple facts about this issue. They should read Horgan's Private Members Bill on Conflict because it speaks directly to this issue and follows legislation in place federally and in other provincial jurisdictions.

It prohibits former aides from turning around and lobbying the government they just left. Can they become consultants? Yes. Can they lobby? Yes. But they can't lobby their former employers for a period of two years.

John Horgan became a consultant. But he didn't consult or lobby with his former employers. It's pretty simple: he met the test of conflict. Apparently many Campbell Liberals don't.

During question period a number of names were raised. ll had new jobs but surprise surprise, none of the wait times were of the same length. So I guess you go ask somebody how long the candidate should be kept away from their previoius bosses. The range went frm a very few months , way up to one year. The Fiance Minister figured that was just great. The desk thumpers went right along with her reasoning. A fixed time would sure be simpler. Just ask Mr. Dobell, as his time was really flexible. But then again althoug finally registed as a Lobbtist, he claims he isn't one, he is a CONSULTANT yet has a offcie in thePremier's suite at the house. Sure cuts down on the cab bills

Of course "every case is different"

Sometimes it involves an NDPer, when Carole Taylor would naturally argue "conflict conflict conflict", but when it's just a fellow Liberal trying to get ahead a little by cashing in on a few inside connections, well give the guy a break, won't you. It's not like he's trying to steal our railway or anything really big.

Besides, Liberals are different, just ask her predecessor Garry Colins, who, when feeling "conflicted" over not spending enough time with his family, retired and turned to life as a simple airline president.

So, you see, it's easy to run from a conflict, especially if you are Liberal.

Why mess that up with standards?

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