Senate Scandal Strategy: Winners and Losers


On the Hill, The Senate Scandal is playing out simultaneously on two stages, main actors jousting in the House of Commons, a spotlight in the Senate and the backstage manouvering where each tries to pull the curtain down on the other. Today, we're in the orchestra seats asking whose performance will convince a Canadian audience.

Evaluating the performances and effectiveness of the lead actors in the Senate Scandal

Back in May, Senator Duffy dropped little hints he had a big story to tell. He showed restraint until last Tuesday when he dropped his first bombshell in the Red Chamber:

"I rise here today against the orders of my doctors, but given the unprecedented nature of today's proceedings I feel like I have no other choice than to come here to defend my good name. I allowed my self to be intimidated into doing what I knew in mt heart was wrong out of a fear of losing my job and out a a misguided sense of loyalty. Much has been made of the $90,000 cheque from Nigel Wright. I hope I will be able to give an explanation of the chain of events and the circumstances surrounding that gift."

Senator Mike Duffy

Another bombshell dropped by Sen. Duffy
insists another cheque in the ongoing
Senate Scandal. (CP/Adrian Wyld)

And did he ever -- lobbing accusations that Prime Minister Stephen Harper and former Senate government leader Marjory LeBreton bullied him into paying back legitimate living expenses. Just when it seemed he'd exhausted his arsenal ... this week he dropped another Duff bomb.

"When I insisted on written guarantees that repaying money I didn't owe would not be seen by the senate as a guilty plea - Nigel Wright arranged to have my legal fees paid. That's right, one cheque from Nigel Wright? No Ladies and gentlemen -- there were two cheques -- at least two cheques!"

Senator Mike Duffy

And so the saga continues ... the Prime Minister seems a little under the gun answering the daily Opposition questions provoked by Senator Duffy's performance. A great deal of politics is theatre and it's worthwhile asking who deserves the biggest ovation as the Senate Scandal continues.

  • Kathleen Monk is a senior adviser at the Broadbent Institute and former Director of Strategic Communications for former NDP leader Jack Layton. She was in Ottawa.

How do you rate the performances of the main players of the Senate Scandal and in the House of Commons?

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This segment was produced by The Current's Sujata Berry and Shannon Higgins.

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