03 October 2006

Conservatives changing the game

And the Liberals are getting worried.
When they sat in opposition, the Tories dined out on tales of then-immigration minister Joe Volpe’s $138 pizzas, and former Mint president David Dingwall’s $800 dinners for two.

Now that they’re in government, the Conservatives are actually raising hackles with their frugality.
Ralph Goodale (yes, he of Income Trust fame) says that the Conservatives are being miserly and he wants answers.
Rona Ambrose at Environment has recorded just more than $56,000 in travel to date this year, a hefty total until one considers the almost $139,000 spent by her Liberal predecessor in 2005. Ambrose’s half-year hospitality bill of $814 makes her look like a piker compared to Stephane Dion, who charged $14,408 over the course of 2005

Justice Minister Vic Toews, who spent $32,562 on travel in the last six months, isn’t quite on pace to match Irwin Cotler’s $76,751 total travel bill in the same portfolio last year. And the $767 spent by Toews on hospitality so far leaves him in Cotler’s $4,300 dust.

Through two quarters, Canadian Heritage Minister Bev Oda has spent $13,778 on travel and $662 on hospitality. In the same two quarters of 2005, Liberal minister Liz Frulla billed $52,885 for travel and $2,060 for hospitality.

And Immigration Minister Monte Solberg’s summer expenses of just more than $23,000 for travel and $455 for hospitality compare favourably to those of Liberal Joe Volpe, who in the same job in the same quarter last year spent $35,000 and $3,900 respectively.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper already answered that question Ralph... it's not the government's money, it belongs to the taxpayers and it will be spent frugally & wisely.

Head on over to Angry in the Great White North to learn how you can help Big Ralphie understand how things should work in a democracy.

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