Well, Harper filed his suit against the Liberal Party today. For whatever reason, he did not pursue his suit against Dion, Ignatieff and Goodale. Oh, wait, maybe the reason is he didn't have a case that he could win.
Interestingly, he's taken a page out of Mulroney's book and is suing for approximately the same amount. I wonder if we'll see him at a Committee in a few years time?
Anyway, the statement of claim is rather interesting. In addition to citing any and all terms used on the Liberal web site that Harper's lawyers believe constitute libel, they also drag Paul Martin, Gloria Galloway and of course the author himself into it, (not suing them though...yet), in an apparent attempt to determine where the leak of the book came from. I'm not certain how that directly relates to their case but hey, it's not unusual for Harper to fish with a very wide net and malign everyone within it's reach.
In Galloway's (G&M) case, they have a copy of an e-mail sent by the publisher, to her on February 27, 2008. It says,
This is an unproofed excerpt, with just the especially incriminating part of the book if you want to use it...
The implication I guess is that the publisher is behind the leak and that Galloway aided and abetted. My question is how did they get hold of that e-mail and my comment would be that even a 6 year old can see that context is not provided here, right down to the, ...., .
On Paul Martin the publisher suggests that the leak didn't come from their office and went on to say,
"It must have been from one of the reviewers that the author had contacted."
Paul Martin was not the only one who received a pre-release of course, but pish tosh, let's not let facts get in the way. It would be an interesting turn if Martin sued Harper.
I'm not a lawyer, but it seems to me that many of the claims made will be easily rebutted. The tape of Harper speaking, clearly refutes some of them but of course within the claim they are suggesting that the tape is incomplete and doctored. They suggest that it picks up in mid-conversation with Harper and ends in mid-conversation. Here's the transcript, judge for yourself.
Zytaruk: "I mean, there was an insurance policy for a million dollars. Do you know anything about that?"
Harper: "I don't know the details. I know that there were discussions, uh, this is not for publication?"
Zytaruk: "This (inaudible) for the book. Not for the newspaper. This is for the book."
Harper: "Um, I don't know the details. I can tell you that I had told the individuals, I mean, they wanted to do it. But I told them they were wasting their time. I said Chuck had made up his mind, he was going to vote with the Liberals and I knew why and I respected the decision. But they were just, they were convinced there was, there were financial issues. There may or may not have been, but I said that's not, you know, I mean, I, that's not going to change."
Zytaruk: "You said (inaudible) beforehand and stuff? It wasn't even a party guy, or maybe some friends, if it was people actually in the party?"
Harper: "No, no, they were legitimately representing the party. I said don't press him. I mean, you have this theory that it's, you know, financial insecurity and, you know, just, you know, if that's what you're saying, make that case but don't press it. I don't think, my view was, my view had been for two or three weeks preceding it, was that Chuck was not going to force an election. I just, we had all kinds of our guys were calling him, and trying to persuade him, I mean, but I just had concluded that's where he stood and respected that."
Zytaruk: "Thank you for that. And when (inaudible)."
Harper: "But the, uh, the offer to Chuck was that it was only to replace financial considerations he might lose due to an election."
Zytaruk: "Oh, OK."
Harper: "OK? That's my understanding of what they were talking about."
Zytaruk: "But, the thing is, though, you made it clear you weren't big on the idea in the first place?"
Harper: "Well, I just thought Chuck had made up his mind, in my own view ..."
Zytaruk: "Oh, okay. So, it's not like, he's like, (inaudible)."
Harper: "I talked to Chuck myself. I talked to (inaudible). You know, I talked to him, oh, two or three weeks before that, and then several weeks before that. I mean, you know, I kind of had a sense of where he was going."
Zytaruk: "Well, thank you very much."
Did anyone see Harper in the House today? He looked pathetic. He pulled at his shirt cuffs like a little boy and complained about how the big, bad, Lib's had made terrible claims about him, so he was going to sue them, just like any other Canadian would do. Big tough Harper decided to hide behind a law suit, rather than face the music that not only Lib's, but the Bloq and occasionally the NDP are playing for him. All he has to do is sing, but adding a U to that word is more his style.
What an ass, what an embarrassment of a PM. If the man would only answer the questions that are being asked of him this could have been done with long ago. Harper, upon receiving the first question in the House, could have produced a document that outlined the offer made to Cadman but rather than do that they saw strategy in the story. They felt they could milk this into a sob story for the poor, poor PM who has been libelled by that nasty Leader of the opposition. I think Harper has even said that all would be revealed in court. (He also said he'd see Dion in court and we now know that is not going to happen.) Well, obviously he has something to reveal, so why doesn't he reveal it in the House?
He's either got nothing or he has something and either way, he's wasting our time. He's turning his back on democracy and has chosen a craven, ideological path that should come as a shock to no one.
These suits drag on forever and I've no doubt that brave Mr. Harper will refuse to answer questions from now on. Though technically I'm not sure he can hide behind the 'before the courts' thing, unless he interprets the Conservative Party to be comprised of only himself? Oh right, he does. Yes his lawsuit is Harper vs the Liberal Party, but the accusations reach beyond him of course.
Funny how the bully's are always exposed as being cowards isn't it?