Everybody get nasty: a round-up of quips, jabs and jokes lobbed at Jaffer and Glemaud

It’s been a while since we’ve had a scandal like this Jaffer-Guergis-Gillani mess and everyone seems to be enjoying it as the press (The Informer included) is turning the snark to 11 by calling Rahim Jaffer fat and his testimony “amateur hour.” The avalanche of criticism is hard to plow through, so the time conscious, we present this cross section of coverage that followed Wednesday’s testimonies from Jaffer and Green Power Generation business partner Patrick Glemaud.

The Globe’s Rick Salutin ripped everyone apart, calling the hearing “inept and embarrassing.” He says Jaffer and Glemaud seemed unprepared (hey, they came without lawyers) and expected the committee to go easy on them. The MPs were “trained seals” and didn’t call the witnesses out when they should have. Still, Salutin appreciates the candidness of the committee members because it makes them more human compared to the robotic “three-headed-party-leadership monster.” Careful—we can’t help but remember that people also liked Sarah Palin for her candour and constant ability to look unprepared.

Another analysis from The Globe has the headline “Rahim Jaffer shunned and humiliated” and opens with the lede: “Rahim Jaffer doesn’t have a friend in town. The way he behaved Wednesday, no wonder.” Glemaud and Jaffer couldn’t name their clients so the committee gave them a day to give up a list of companies that were hoping to get federal funding. Neither of them wanted to talk about their industry proposals, which doesn’t really help in asserting one’s innocence or business acumen.

• The Edmonton Journal didn’t call the hearing “amateur hour.” They preferred the term “street theatre.”

• Jaffer has been accused of lobbying the government without registering, a claim the former MP refutes. Andrew Coyne from Maclean’s writes about the loophole Jaffer and Glemaud might have found when the two claimed that they weren’t being paid to lobby but merely doing research. Calling it “Rahim and Patrick’s Don’t Pay a Cent Event,” Coyne hypothesizes that the two could be doing the preliminary research work for free but then will start charging clients once it looks as though their projects could receive government grants.

• The Vancouver Sun touched on Jaffer and Glemaud’s denial of lobbying as well and concluded that “Jaffer, instead of restoring his credibility, established himself as a first-class liar.”

• Our final citation of criticism comes from Glemaud himself, who alleges that the reason he and Jaffer got such a rough ride is because the MPs are racists. In a letter that Glemaud sent to the committee after his testimony on Wednesday it contains this quotable quote:

After the grilling from the Committee, I was approached by several respectable citizens from various visible minority groups who expressed their feeling that racism seemed to be the underlying logic for such harsh treatment of two young new Canadians that have not been found guilty of any crimes.

Keep in mind that only two people have testified so far and that Helena Guergis and Nazim Gillani‘s testimonies are in the upcoming weeks, giving everyone time to resharpen their claws and practice their three-snaps-in-a-Z moves.


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