At this point, no one knows how the Senate fiasco is going to play out.
All the talk of secret deals and illicit payments could conceivably eventually lead to one or more of the embattled Senators departing the upper chamber of our country’s Parliament for good.
So, in the event Mike Duffy or anyone else quits their cushy job, I’d like to put in a good word ahead of time for someone I believe would be a worthy successor.
I’m talking, of course, about my dog.
I know what you’re thinking: Why Dan’s dog?
You probably have your own opinion about the person, household animal or inanimate object Prime Minister Stephen Harper should tap as the next in the growing line of appointees he has approved so far.
You’re probably saying to yourself: Why not another dog? Or even a cat?
Hold that thought while I sketch out the case for Dallas, the black lab my wife and I rescued two years ago.
I admit it’s an out-of-box choice.
But think of all the positive qualities he brings to the job — whatever it is that Senators do.
For starters, Dallas would be a fiscally prudent choice. Being an animal, he doesn’t really need the base salary of $132,300. I’m sure he would do all that important tasks our Senate undertakes for a fraction of the cost; in fact, you could probably pay him in kibble and the occasional treat or hunk of cheese. So right there you have a considerable savings.
Secondly, unlike Senators such as Duffy, my dog knows where he lives. He has a keen sense of smell and direction, which means he understands exactly which house is his primary residence. Canadian taxpayers wouldn’t have to worry about this Senator fudging his expenses and accidentally overcharging the government by more than $90,000 on his housing allowance.
Granted, he would need to be walked regularly (we walk him three times every day).
And I realize some of you probably have concerns about a dog disrupting the important business on Parliament Hill. Let me reassure you, most of the time he just sleeps. Rather than being a distraction, he would fit right in with the more elderly Senators and MPs who are given to nodding off now and then (or so I’ve heard).
Most importantly, he’s an eager learner. My dog knows several tricks, so he’d be just as adept as all the other Senators who are used to taking orders from the PMO. If being loyal to the Conservative party is how most Senators get appointed, well, Dallas is as loyal as the day is long. Heck, you could share any secret information with him and he wouldn’t blurt it out.
Long-time readers of this column will remember I once campaigned to get my wife, Amanda, appointed governor general. So some of you may dismiss this idea as more of the same foolishness.
But I couldn’t be more serious.
And while it’s true no one can predict the future of this mess, there was a way to stop it from happening in the first place, and that was for supposed journalists like Duffy and Pamela Wallin to have not accepted their appointments to begin with.
The advantage of having a dog in the Senate is that, unlike mere humans, he would be impossible to corrupt. And he is house-trained, so there won’t be any temptation on his part to pee on the Senate’s hallowed red carpet.