Ask most Canadians today and you will find few who believe a politician is someone they want to emulate. That’s hardly a surprise. Politicians on the whole suffer from a lack of integrity.
One look at the intentional and unending lying of Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau on the issue of speaking fees leaves any rational human being with the feeling they will vomit any second.
After pocketing over quarter of a million dollars in speaking fees since he was elected to Parliament, Trudeau The Younger just can’t comprehend why taking money is wrong, let alone why nobody believes him when he claims he never took a dime. Flashbacks of Bill Clinton’s “I never had sexual relations with that woman!” lie come to mind watching Trudeau protest his innocence, don’t they?
Justin Trudeau, along with Senator Duffy, Senator Brazeau and a host of other politicians (perhaps ALL of them?) could seriously learn a thing or two from first-term Member of Parliament Elizabeth May. Were they to have a shred of decency among them their collective sense of entitlement would shrivel up, die and blow away in a summer’s breeze.
But that’s the crux of the problem, really, isn’t it? Politicians, once elected, become obsessed with “What’s in it for me?” instead of comprehending the reason they ought to be in politics in the first place: to serve others.
There is no sense of service in “public service”; just the unending sense of entitlement to the contents of Canadian Taxpayer wallets. For a group of very privileged people who are paid far too generously, at a minimum 4 times the average annual salary of we “mere citizens”, politicians are perhaps the greediest and self-absorbed piglets on the planet.
Now why would a conservative writer like me tout the likes of Elizabeth May?
Simple. She acts more conservatively than any so-called Conservative Member of Parliament in the House of Commons, at least on one issue: MP Expenses.
Elizabeth May did something no other MP has the guts to do. She published her expenses online for the world to see.
Every other MP in the nation runs screaming from the idea but May knew she had nothing to hide. Turns out she was right. Not only did she have nothing to hide in her MP expenses, there is a lot for her to be proud of in her expense report.
The Rules state she can claim a maximum of $11,000 for “per diem” while the House is sitting. May claimed less than half that. She is entitled, under our absurd pork barrel rules for politicians, to claim $83.25 for every day she is outside of her riding and she was outside of her riding more than 180 days in the last fiscal year. She claimed for only 70, a little more than a third of the days she could legitimately claim for.
Travel expenses is where May really showed her conservative roots, however. May claimed a mere $834.96 in travel expenses. That probably doesn’t buy her a single return trip from her Sunshine Coast riding to Ottawa and back!
What is astonishing about Elizabeth May’s expense report though, is the final number. Her entire expense claim for 2012/2013 is a paltry $23,684.82.
There is a reason the other MPs in the House of Commons, and Conservative MPs in particular, refuse to release their expenses for we mere citizens to see: They’re ashamed of being “out-Conservatived” by a rookie MP from BC’s Sunshine Coast.
Oddly enough (or maybe not) Elizabeth May would not answer my requests for an interview on the subject of her expenses. I suppose I can’t blame her for that. One look at my blog and she probably thought I was looking to ambush her on some other topic.
That’s not the case. Really, all I wanted to ask her was if she would confirm a report I’d heard from another source. That person claimed Elizabeth May is a regular at meetings of the Outdoor Caucus in Ottawa. When asked why she was there, since fishing, hunting and shooting were likely not her first choice in pastimes, she reportedly said
“Because my constituents are.”
A politician representing the interests of her constituents? Sounds heretical to me!
I've sent Ms. May a copy of this article. Hopefully she will respond and tell me if the story I heard about her and the Outdoor Caucus is true.