Duffy blasts NDP MP as 'faker'

Conservative Senator Mike Duffy calls MP Peter Stoffer a "faker" after the New Democrat releases a report questioning the expenses of new Tory senators.

Conservative Senator Mike Duffy called MP Peter Stoffer a "faker" Thursday after the Nova Scotia New Democrat released a report questioning the expenses of new Tory senators.

"It's all bafflegab," Duffy said of the report. "It's just a diversion to try and take the public's attention away from the byelections that are coming up on Monday in which the NDP, I hope in Nova Scotia, are going to be trounced. Because they're fakers."

The report said the 27 senators appointed by Prime Minister Stephen Harper over the past year could end up costing Canadian taxpayers $177 million.

The report found that Duffy, for example, booked more than $44,000 in travel expenses, despite sitting for just three months at the end of the 2008-09 fiscal year.

But appearing on CBC's Power & Politics, Duffy said he was being unfairly singled out. On a per annum basis, his costs and Stoffer's expenses of $128,000 are almost identical, Duffy said.

"Is he saying that every dollar that I spent was not worthwhile, reaching out to Canadians, and yet his were?" Duffy asked. "So let's put some balance and some fairness. There are all kind of senators who had much bigger numbers than I did."

The MP should get a Hollywood award for acting because "he's an actor," Duffy said. "He's a very amiable fake.

"Fact of the matter is that my time as a parliamentarian listening to Canadians is just as valuable as Peter Stoffer, who is a backbencher, who is a faker, who pretends to side with the military in his riding and then votes against them at every turn."

Stoffer, the MP for Sackville-Eastern Shore, defended the report, saying both Liberals and Conservatives were mentioned.

"Mr. Duffy, I always thought you had a much thicker skin than that but obviously I was wrong," Stoffer said.

Stoffer also defended his expenses, saying he got elected to represent his riding, whereas Duffy was appointed.

"The reality is if you take 27 new senators and add it over 20 years, that's $177 million payable to the Canadian taxpayer. That was from a government and a prime minister that said they would never do that. Then you add their expenses on top of that over the years, it's quite a number."

"We look at it this way, that some of the work that the Senate had done — you need to be a senator to do this type of work?

"We have many, many people in the country that can do that type of work without having to be a burden on the Canadian taxpayer."

With files from The Canadian Press