It seems the $90 000 “gift” to Senator, Mike Duffy, that was supposed to make his expense scandal go away, was brokered by PMO lawyer Benjamin Perrin. I was curious to know what kind of lawyer would get involved in something like this, so I did a little Google searching to find out what I could about Perrin.
I found an op-ed that Perrin authored in the National Post. The article defends the much debated Omnibus Crime Bill. The article reveals Perrin’s disposition when it comes to ethics. Perrin defends the bill by citing 9 examples of how the it introduces “eminently reasonable” reforms. Notwithstanding the his perceived reasonableness of the the Omnibus Crime Bill, what Perrin doesn’t seem to understand is that the problem with an omnibus bill is its overarching coverage of many things at once, that limits debate and therefore handcuffs the democratic process. Perrin’s article focuses on what he perceives to be a desirable end, when it is the means that are in question. Any first year philosophy student is able to tell you that using the end to justify corrupt means is a breach logic and ethics. Such obtuseness says much about the disposition of the lawyer who holds one of the most trusted legal positions in the country.
You may want to take a look at an old Conservative campaign ad, in which a prime-ministerial hopeful Stephen Harper laments about the government of the time, saying “these guys don’t even know the difference between right and wrong”. The inability (or refusal) to embrace ethics shows something about Harper’s own people, and is quickly becoming the hallmark of a party whose very election platform was accountability.
PS. The original CTV report about Perrin’s involvement in the Duffy deal seemed to disappear amid Perrin’s denials that he had any involvement in the deal. I’m unconvinced that Perrin was uninvolved in the deal, but my suspicion can’t be considered to be anything but speculation based on the original report, and based on recent police revelations.
PPS. The most recent news reports suggest that Perrin’s own law society is considering investigating his conduct.
PPPS. There is now a criminal investigation as “lost” emails connected to Benjamin Perrin have resurfaced.