Interesting development today as Julian Fantino was dumped by Harper from Veterans Affairs. Interesting as Mr. Fantino was a big supporter of Tim Laidler going so far as to repeatedly making Facebook and Twitter posts heaping praise and support for Tim Laidler as the Conservative candidate for Port Moody-Coquitlam.
In turn, Mr. Laidler was a big supporter of Mr. Fantino and the Conservatives’ handling of Veterans Affairs. Below is an excerpt detailing Mr. Fantino’s time as the Minister of Veteran’s Affairs:
“He (Fantino) found himself in political hot water almost from the moment he took the post.
Under Fantino, the department came under heavy fire from veterans groups, the veterans ombudsman, the auditor general and the political opposition.
Fantino’s efforts to defend office closures, job cuts, lapsed budget money and tweaks to pensions and benefits provoked anger from veterans and scorn from the NDP and Liberals.
There were public relations gaffes, including a much-publicized — and televised — confrontation with veterans, and the sight of Fantino walking down a parliamentary hallway, ignoring shouted questions from the wife of a former soldier.
Government lawyers went to court to argue that the government has no special responsibility to care for veterans, although that had been iron-clad policy since the First World War.
There were howls of protest when it was learned the department had allowed more than $1 billion of its budget to lapse and return to the federal treasury since 2006. The anger only grew when the department admitted spending $4 million on ads last year promoting its efforts to help veterans return to civilian life.
Reports detailed the troubles veterans encountered getting help and benefits from the department. Other studies suggested that wounded veterans would face poverty once they hit age 65.”
This is what Tim Laidler was supporting. Perhaps not all those complaints about Veterans’ treatment were “coming from a vocal minority and, in some cases, from partisan groups” as Mr. Laidler suggested. Here’s a link to a press conference in which veterans expressed their concerns with the Veterans Affairs Ministry run by Mr. Fantino.
Mr. Laidler’s support for Mr. Fantino and the Conservatives’ handling of Veterans Affairs appears to be a clear case of political partisanship clouding his judgement. Is this what we want from our representative in Port Moody-Coquitlam? If elected, would he let his partisan view cloud his judgement in other areas too?
It should be noted that subsequent to Mr. Fantino’s removal from the office as Minister of Veterans Affairs, there have been open calls for Mr. Fantino to bid farewell to politics altogether by his local constituents.