Duffy has a target because he didn’t join the Liberal team

- February 11th, 2013

Over at the Toronto Star columnist Tim Harper tries to explain why the media is going after Conservative Senator Mike Duffy.

To Ottawa-based journalists, Duffy betrayed the tribe, insulting those of us who believe our job is to try to hold our elected representatives to account, not to turn on a dime once a patronage plum is dangled.

I’m not buying it.

First off if that is the only reason then why has the press pack here in the capital never gone after Liberal Senators like Jim Munson who worked in the gallery for years or Marie Charette-Poulin who worked as an executive with CBC?

Now I’ve known Senators Duffy and Munson for years, only met Charette-Poilin once or twice. Both men came out of CTV where they each had distinguished careers as journalists. Despite critics of the Senate complaining the chamber does nothing both Duffy and Munson are from the crop of appointees who take their roles seriously.

So why Duffy and not Munson?

Simple, when Munson joined the Senate, it was as a Liberal and after having already taken a plum job as Jean Chretien’s director of communications.

Duffy’s problem is that he joined the wrong team, if he was a Liberal instead of Conservative senator there wouldn’t be nearly as much attention.

The unwritten rule in Canadian media is that media types are allowed to have and express their personal politics through their stories if their politics lean left. Otherwise they wear a target on their backs.

 

Categories: Politics

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22 comments

  1. Nick Cameron says:

    A little too simplistic, Brian. Duffy’s ethics seem a little too “flexible” for my liking and I’m a conservative supporter.

  2. John Kane says:

    Nothing to do with background it is sense of entitlement that seems to hit people who find themselves on the public payroll.

  3. Jim Powell says:

    Nonsense — more of the pro-Conservative “the media hates us” nonsense. If anyone’s getting a free pass from the press these days it’s the robo-calling Conservatives.

  4. Frank the tank says:

    That’s stupid. He took taxpayer money by claiming to be a resident of PEI. He lied and his credibility is suffering because of his lie. If he offered to pay back the money he took then that would help.

  5. hollinm says:

    Exactly! That’s the problem with the pack of wolves that occupy the press gallery. Whatever a Liberal does is ok by them. However, Conservatives need to be scorned and attacked like rabid wolves. They are a disgusting lot with Tim Harper at the top of the list. I thought Jim Travers & Lawrence Martin was/is bad but Harper/Martin take the cake. You notice that Harb is spoken of in a by the way mention in most columns. Duffy is the focus of their scorn.

  6. Duffy says:

    Are you insane? He has a target on his back because in addition to taking the roles seriously he has made himself a hyper-partisan who has also chastised media types. I may have been wrong to take your article seriously. You are like the Stephen Colbert of the North. Thanks for the chuckle.

  7. Dennis Rice says:

    I have a question (an honest question, so please SUN fans no attacks…it’s my birthday):

    If you’re going to set up an equivalencey between Senators Duffy and Munson, and claim the media gave Munson a free ride while attacking Duffy, you need to explain the issue on which Munson got a free ride. Duffy is under the spotlight for potentially defrauding taxpayers…was there such an incident in Munson’s past?

    If there was, then I agree that this is wrong. (I’m not as quick to claim left-right media bias, but I can acknowledge unequal treatment when I see it.)

  8. Brian Lilley says:

    I am not suggesting that Mike Duffy is innocent of all claims against him.
    The Star column I point to claims Duffy is getting more attention because he “betrayed the tribe.”

    Had Duffy done like Munson and left CTV for Liberal land then everything would have been fine.

    Senator Mac Harb has only lived in Ottawa and has also claimed the expenses Duffy is being hammered for. Much more attention is paid to Duffy because he “betrayed the tribe” and left journalism for the Conservatives.

    Duffy has been hammered and hounded for years even before this came out. Munson never was.

    Follow the rules, let the investigation go through and deal with everyone equally before the law. As for media bias, it exists and it tilts left.

  9. Lynn Simpson says:

    I think what irks me the most is that Duffy was a huge critic of the senate and the “entitled ones” before he arrived in the chamber. Why would he change his opinion once he was appointed?? It is a real insult to the people of Prince Edward Island if he in not actually living there. Brian has missed the point —it is about the residence, not the party affiliation. Can you not see that?

  10. Thomas Watson says:

    Did everyone watch the Dr. Carson speech at the Obama prayer breakfast. Most intelligent comments anyone has spoken in USA for last 100 years. I hope Brian Lilley does a segment on this speech. Maybe with luck you can get him on your show.

    I hear that CNN and the other joy shouters have not even covered this speech. How dumb does the Americans have to dumb down – is it now forbidden for a black man to have an education, lest he dare to have an opinion. CNN is disgraceful.

    If you missed Dr. Carson – go to FOX NEWS – thankfully they covered it.

  11. George Webb says:

    Everything has been fine until several senators have tried to fudge their expenses and possible claim money not owed to them. Duffy does not appear to be a resident of PEI and if that is proved he should be removed.
    Nothing partisan about it.

  12. ElGriego says:

    You’re also ignoring the fact Duffy worked for the most part of his career for the CBC where he got training at taxpayer expense while being overly well-paid and before peddling himself to CTV.

    And the stories he covered immediately preceding his defection to the side he was supposedly monitoring he did a smear job on the Liberal Stephane Dion that literally killed Dion’s career. Then – wham – thank you Duff, here’s your reward you get to join the Senate as a Conservative.

    C’mon Lillley. Even you guys who are always slamming CBC know it’s just sour grapes, but defending Duffy really beats all level of hypocrisy you’ve shown before.

  13. Duffy says:

    Hey Lilly. Repeat your misdiagnosis all you want, but you’re wrong. Muns

  14. Duffy says:

    Munson has not done anything to be investigated. Duffy may have. If Duffy was a liberal he’d be under the same light as Harb. So you have no point except in your sideburns.

  15. Sporty says:

    Somewhat simplistic, but right on. Munson joined as a Liberal and has never, ever come under scrutiny for anything (good or bad). He has been given a free pass from the grovelling liberal media (I know the media is Liberal as I used to be in the media – one of the few conservatives in the biz) because he was one of their buddies on the Parliament beat.

    While Duffy is rightfully being grilled regarding this issue I ask Jim Powell and Duffy this…..Where are the articles investigating Mr. Harb’s similar situation? Well, he’s a Liberal so he is getting the free pass – other than the Citizen which brought up the issue with him. He’s an obvious fraud as he is listing a property near Pembroke as his prime residence when he is a resident of Ottawa (long time). Duffy was named senator for PEI so he claimed his PEI residence as his primary home (as required if you are to represent the province). He should have taken the loss of the allowance or moved back to PEI and used that home as his primary residence.

    @Lynn….so it IS about party affiliation….always will be when CBC, CTV, Globe etc. remain the communications wing of the Liberal/NDP parties.

  16. franc black says:

    The Conservatives have a majority now. This kind of whining just doesn’t fit anymore. Try and find a new song, or why not make it a ‘bye-bye’ line?

  17. Gabby in QC says:

    Google “With the Senate (and senators) in the news, a defence of sorts for Senator Mike Duffy” to read Mark Bourrie’s Feb 8, 2013 article, very similar to Brian Lilley’s take.

    The point is that had Mike Duffy been a Liberal senator, he would have been a footnote in articles about the Senate’s purported waste of time and money.

    If the issue is excessive claims on taxpayer money … why wasn’t there the same hue and cry about “Layton and Chow: The million-dollar power couple” (Nov 06 2010 Toronto Star!!! article), whose combined expense claim for 2009 was $1.16 million? Compare how much noise that information generated in the media to the din & outcry over Bev Oda’s $16 orange juice.

    Were the same questions about primary residence raised in Senator Joyce Fairbairn’s case? As I posted elsewhere …
    Here’s some information about a senator who was briefly in the news for an entirely different reason, Joyce Fairbairn. The Wiki entry for Ms. Fairbairn reads:
    “Fairbairn worked as a journalist in the Parliamentary Press Gallery in Ottawa before being hired as a legislative assistant to Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in 1970. In 1981, she became Communications Coordinator in the Prime Minister’s Office. On June 29, 1984, just prior to leaving office, Trudeau recommended her for appointment as a Liberal senator for Alberta, her home province.”

    Reading that, one would assume Ms. Fairbairn’s principal residence was in Ottawa, like Senator Duffy’s during his journalist days, yet she subsequently was appointed to the Senate to represent Alberta. I wonder if the same questions were raised in her case. Or in any other non-Conservative senator’s case, for that matter.

    Do away with the double standard and complaints about liberal media bias will gradually disappear.

  18. bob says:

    Looks like Brians doing his job Getting the easily lead believing the main stream media bias and how only the Sun media hires only independant thinkers LOL.I guess all other reporters get educated at the left wing academy . Like in school WAH WAH the teachers hate me thats why I’m failing

  19. Peter Hudyman says:

    why not deal with the susbstance of the charges against Duffy than with these pathetic generalizations…he clearly does not live in PEI, yet is claiming expenses as if he is…if he is claiming to represent a region in order to be a senator he needs to live there..period. …what is tells me is that conservatives have a ridiculous sense of entitlement and arrogance especially now that they have a majority…Duffy could not give up the bubbling politics of Ottawa, I would much have preferred a discussion on getting rid of the senate or at least senate reform, but no we get this defense of Duffy from another right wing hack…the only reason the conservatives won’t get rid of the senate (or the liberals) is because it a patronage reward for their backroom supporters, which Duffy was for years despite his claim to being an objective reporter

  20. Robin Chalmers says:

    Nonsense…. poltical affiliation has nothing to do with fraud. The guilty in both parties should not only have to pay back monies they should not have taken but also turfed from the Senate…….plus future Prime Ministers must select intelligent people of integrity to be Senators.

  21. Bill Elder says:

    I had to laugh at Tom Harper’s lofty idealism – believing his purpose is as unofficial opposition when the real one is ineffective at getting the diert on a government. This amuzes me because the Star and all the usual MSM suspects were as silent as a grave on the mountainous scandal in the Liberal governments. If he had fulfilled his purpose of getting the dirt on government, Chretien’s Librano clan wouldn;t have lasted as long as they did.

    The bias is there and obvious, they should stop insulting our intelligence by pretendining they are “balanced”.

  22. Brian Stewart says:

    Brian you have hit the nail on the head. The Libs owned the inbred Press Gallery. Stroked them, plied them with alcohol and told them how great they were. Harper treated them like they were nothing special and cut off the free booze and their empty heads are exploding.

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