Go on take the money and run

Chris d'Entremont does on the attack over Liberal trust funds.

Chris d’Entremont goes on the attack over Stephen McNeil and the Liberal trust funds.

Argyle PC MLA Chris d’Entremont went on the attack this week, saying Stephen McNeil must come clean about the $2.3 million tainted Liberal trust fund money.

In a press release, d’Entremont said: “The biggest test of Stephen McNeil’s leadership was deciding what to do with the tainted Liberal trust fund money, but instead of washing his hands of it, he continues to hide the details… It’s time for McNeil to release all the details regarding the tainted money, including the constitution of the trust, and clean-up the Party bank account to where it should be, without ever having had the tainted trust fund money around to pay for expenses.”

In a discussion about a bill about government transparency, d’Entremont explained exactly what he wanted to see from the Liberal leader:

The one big decision that the member for Annapolis had to do as Leader, the one test that Nova Scotians can look at to see if he’s fit to be a Premier, was whether to use the tainted trust funds his leadership inherited from the dark days of previous Liberal regimes. Instead, by all appearances he chose to use the money – money over principle. Instead of coming clean with Nova Scotians and saying we have ample grounds to suspect some or all of this money came from tollgating, he chose to allow his Party to use the trust money; instead of being transparent and saying we’re just going to use it, the current Leader allowed the money to flow until it was pried from his grasp; and instead of being transparent and just admitting he was being used, they created a web involving internally restricted funds.

If they hadn’t had the use of those trust funds for all those years, how, without huge borrowing, could the Liberals have spent money on expensive advertising and polling? Not just before they were forced to get rid of the fund, Madam Speaker, even in the last year, because of the shape of their books today, would be vastly different if the Liberal Leader had to decide they would have nothing to do with that money.

Who did they transfer the funds to? Name names. In specifics, who are the current trustees or directors who control the money, and what ties have they had with the Liberal Party over the years? Because Nova Scotians will want to be able to see and judge whether the money has been put out of the reach of the Liberals.

Disclose who paid for any part of the bill, for the polling, for the research and advertising done, since they were forced to give up the funds…

Maybe that trust fund on the side is doing some polling for them; maybe they’re doing some advertising for them. We don’t know, because they won’t tell us.

The press are loathe to report on the Liberal’s trust fund. Perhaps speeches like Chris d’Entremont’s will encourage some investigative journalism.

We welcome any Liberal MLA to email us a rebuttal to d’Entremont’s comments.