Green Party Leader Elizabeth May in Surrey. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

Elizabeth May says expelled Liberal MPs ‘very brave’

Trudeau expelled Liberal MPs Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott from caucus Tuesday afternoon

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May appears to like a good puzzle as much as the next gal. Perhaps that’s why she spent considerable time Tuesday morning in Surrey speaking to the SNC-Lavalin issue and sticking up for her fellow MP at the centre of the storm, the now-former Liberal Jody Wilson-Raybould.

“I believe Jody Wilson-Raybould has been very honourable in her work, very impressive, she has a lot of integrity,” said May, speaking at a Surrey Board of Trade function showcasing leaders of Canada’s federal parties in a series of meetings in this city.

READ ALSO: Elizabeth May aims to reprise ‘great Surrey breakthrough’

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expelled Liberal MPs Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott from caucus Tuesday.

“When we were elected in 2015 we won because we stood together as a team,” Trudeau told reporters afterward. “The old Liberal party was notorious for infighting. My leadership was a commitment to change that.”

homelessphoto

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (File photo)

“Civil wars within parties are incredibly damaging because they signal to Canadians that we care more about ourselves than we care about them,” Trudeau told reporters. “That’s why I made the difficult decision to remove Ms. Wilson Raybould and Dr. Philpott from the Liberal caucus.

“We’ve taken every effort to address their concerns. But ultimately if they can’t honestly say that they have confidence in this team, despite weeks of testimony, face-to-face conversations and phone calls with myself and other members of caucus, then they cannot be part of this team.”

Meantime, May said Wilson-Raybould and Philpott are “very brave. But they’re not the norm.”

READ ALSO: Supporters in Vancouver riding would back Wilson-Raybould as an Independent

An audience member remarked that as far as she could see no laws were broken and yet Wilson-Raybould “is burning down the House.”

May replied that that “the laws weren’t broken because she held firm.”

“The constitutional principle of prosecutorial independence really matters,” the Green Party leader said. “We can’t be a country where if you’re big enough and rich enough, you get a get-out-of jail-free card.

“In this case the prosecutorial independence is not the attorney general’s, the prosecutorial independence is to protect the independence of the director of public prosecutions,” she said. “She’s the only one, other that the attorney general, who’s looked through the evidence they have on SNC-Lavalin and made a determination under the law, does this corporation qualify for this new tool, deferred prosecution agreement, which I voted for because it looked pretty benign when I read the whole omnibus budget.

“I didn’t know it was for SNC-Lavalin,” May said. “I read the reasons it could be used and thought they were satisfactory. Well, I think they may be satisfactory because the director of public prosecutions in this country looked at the criteria under the deferred prosecution agreement, which included such things as a corporation can qualify if it self-reported its crime. SNC-Lavalin didn’t self-report.”

“We need to look at the evidence,” May said, “before we decide that the attorney general should do something unprecedented and intervene and tell the director of public prosecutions you’re going to give this company a deal.”



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Just Posted

Economic inequality, immigration still need work in Victoria: Prosperity index

Housing, environmental health factors show improvements in 2019: report

WATCH: Soon-to-be guide dogs take part in the Amazing Puppy Race

10 puppies training to be guide dogs took part in a social Easter egg hunt

Victoria City Councillor Laurel Collins wins federal NDP nomination

Collins will run for Victoria in the upcoming federal election

Eco warriors to shut down Douglas Street on Earth Day

Environmentalists to call on banks to divert investments into green infrastructure

Victoria church bells toll in solidarity with Notre Dame Cathedral after devastating fire

Churches around the globe ring bells to honour iconic Paris cathedral

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. senior sentenced for sexually abusing special-needs granddaughter

73-year-old Cortes Island man will go to jail for three years

Howe Sound Queen sailing toward retirement

Vessel now up for auction ends regular runs between Crofton and Vesuvius at the beginning of June

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Most Read