Nfld. & Labrador

RNC launching review into Paul Davis promotional video

The RNC chief says he will launch a review into a video published by Premier Paul Davis, in which an active RNC officer endorses the premier.

Paul Davis campaign video

Here and Now

6 years ago
Paul Davis campaign video 2:41

The chief of the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary says he will launch a review into a video published by Premier Paul Davis, in which an RNC officer endorses the premier.

The video, published on Tuesday, features several people talking favourably about Davis, including constituents, friends, and his wife.

Paul Davis is defending an endorsement made by RNC officer Todd Barron in his recently published promotional video. The video was taken down late Wednesday afternoon. (CBC)

One person featured is Todd Barron, who is identified as an RNC officer in the video.  

Provincial legislation prohibits RNC officers from being involved in partisan politics, on the basis that police should be independent and impartial.

However, Davis, a former RNC officer himself, defended the endorsement when questioned Wednesday morning.

"It's a dated, it's an older video, and Mr. Barron at the time was an executive of the police association," Davis told reporters.

"Todd Barron's been a long-time friend of mine, as have other people that are in the video. He expressed his very personal and long-lasting experience that he's had with me."

Video taken off website

Davis said the rules should change, and that he has no problem with officers or other civil servants being involved in politics.

"I respect people's individual rights to have an opinion, to express that opinion as well, as long as it doesn't interfere if they have a duty, a sworn duty, an obligation to government as an employee and so on," said Davis.

"If it doesn't interfere with that, then they're well within their rights."

The video was taken off of Davis' website late Wednesday afternoon.

"‎ A decision was made to remove a portion of the commentary following questions which arose this morning," government spokesperson Heather MacLean said in a statement.

"The commentaries are personal reflections of individuals known to Premier Davis and were by no means intended to place anyone in a compromising position."

Barron was promoted to inspector while Paul Davis was premier. The promotion required the approval of cabinet.