[Ted Byfield] The rising Canadian political leader that no one can risk recognizing

[Ted Byfield] The rising Canadian political leader that no one can risk recognizing

Opinion
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The fired attorney general remains in Trudeau’s caucus as a far-more-fit successor

[Ted Byfield Blog] The impressive figure who has burst so spectacularly into the cold, murky world of Ottawa over the last few weeks suffers from an unusual disadvantage. Nobody active in current politics can safely mention this person as a formidable candidate for party leadership. So let me do it for them. She is Madam Jody Wilson-Raybould, fired by the Trudeau government for actually doing what she had sworn to do when they made her Canada’s minister of justice and attorney general. When offered a lesser cabinet post, she quit on a point of principle. How staggeringly unique in today’s Ottawa.

VIDEO: [CBC] Jody Wilson-Raybould’s father warns Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in 1983 that his daughter wants to be PM. [Nov 5, 2015]


But she did not join the opposition. Nor did she elect to sit as an independent She leveled very serious charges against the Liberal prime minister that border on the criminal. People who do this are expected to leave the government benches immediately. She casts, as it were, a lethal vote of non-confidence in the prime minister. But then, horror of horrors, she stays put in the party and the caucus.

Thus she now sits there — brazen, rebellious, defiant — and nobody dares to move her expulsion. That would be Prime Minister Trudeau’s job, of course, but it severely violates the image he has set for himself. Above all else, he must be nice, and people who throw their critics off the bus aren’t being at all nice. So he’s baffled.

He baffles easily, of course, but Ms. Wilson-Raybould is a particularly difficult case — not just for him, but also for the opposition as well. Consider the circumstances. First, she is female and all up-to-date politicians must present themselves as deeply feminist, Trudeau in particular. She is also a native, in fact the daughter of a widely-admired native leader in British Columbia. Moreover, she is an accomplished lawyer, a former crown prosecutor, and also a wife and mother.

Finally, she is highly principled, a much respected quality in today’s Ottawa, until one really acts on one’s principles. This is regarded as “extremist.” And she, miserable woman, was principled enough to refuse to back down when some Very Important People in the federal government, one of them the prime minister himself, firmly and repeatedly pressured her as attorney general to to drop the charges against Quebec’s SNC Lavalin Corporation for offering bribes to the executives of overseas corporations.

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