Just call me Bill
William Elliott is the new top cop in Canada.
Just two months on the job, he admits it's a daunting one, especially for someone so new to the force.
He says some rank and file members have been brutally frank in their comments to him as he travels across the country. He's been told it's a slap in the face to have a civilian for a boss, an outsider who knows little about the nuts and bolts of the RCMP.
But the Liberals think of Elliott as an insider, a political insider. That's because, among his other jobs, Elliott was the Associate Deputy Minister under Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day.
Friday at a hearing of the House of Commons public accounts committee, Elliott was asked about an e-mail sent out by Day to RCMP employees in which he referred to Elliott as "Bill."
"Are you a little uncomfortable with being referred to as Bill? Don't you think you should be referred to as Commissioner Elliott?" asked Ontario Liberal MP David McGuinty accusingly.
Elliott shot back: "I'm not uncomfortable with being referred to as Bill. I might point out that Prime Minister Martin and Prime Minister Harper and many other ministers called me Bill. That is my name," he said as guffaws erupted from observers in the room. Elliott also served as National Security Adviser to both former Prime Minister Martin and Prime Minister Harper.
Ontario NDP MP David Christopherson took issue with the suggestion of familiarity, calling it "lame." He said that when he was Solicitor General in Bob Rae's government, he referred to former Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner Thomas O'Grady as "Tom." This sparked more gales of laughter in the committee room.
Undeterred, McGuinty said that it's all too familiar: "He should be calling him "Commissioner Elliott... Let's say if there was a problem, would 'Stock' and 'Bill' solve the problem? I don't think it's appropriate."
- The "Welcome to the Cheque Republic" buttons were popular at last weekend's Parliamentary Press Gallery Dinner. And now there's a website. Today, the Liberals launched www.chequerepublic.ca. It seems the oversized novelty cheque story has had an entirely unanticipated stimulus effect --... Continue reading this post
- Just a Small Detail
- What a curious omission. Yesterday, CBC contacted the office of Natural Resources Minister Lisa Raitt to ask about the lobbyist who helped organize a fundraiser on her behalf on Sept. 24. Michael B. McSweeney is vice-president of the Cement Association... Continue reading this post