“Oh Boy, Oh Boy” – As Philpott Resigns, Can Trudeau Quell Mutiny in Liberal Party?
Jane Philpott (left), showing her support for Jody Wison-Raybould (right), announced her resignation from the Liberal cabinet yesterday. Photo: Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press
In what media are describing as a civil war in the Liberal Party, Jane Philpott became the second cabinet minister to resign over the way Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his staff have mishandled the SNC-Lavalin affair.
Philpott, a close friend of former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould, announced yesterday that she was stepping down from her cabinet position as Treasury Board president.
“I have been considering the events that have shaken the federal government in recent weeks and after serious reflection, I have concluded that I must resign as a member of Cabinet,” Philpott said in a public letter to Prime Minister Trudeau yesterday.
“Sadly, I have lost confidence in how the government has dealt with this matter and in how it has responded to the issues raised,” she continued, referring to Wilson-Raybould’s testimony to the House Justice Committee on the pressure she received from the Prime Minister and his staff to intervene on behalf of engineering firm SNC-Lavalin.
Philpott’s no-confidence bombshell is another punch in the gut for a Prime Minister who’s brand has taken an awful beating since the Globe and Mail broke the SNC-Lavalin scandal in early February.
The news of Philpott’s resignation broke while the Prime Minister was in Toronto yesterday at a climate change rally, trying desperately to change the channel away from the ongoing bad news of the affair. Unfortunately, the mushroom cloud of bad news followed him and that plan backfired.
Trudeau’s talk was disrupted as security tried to escort out environmental protesters and supporters of Wilson-Raybould. Later, several members of the crowd began pushing and another scuffle broke out.
The Prime Minister watched in bewilderment, saying “Oh boy, oh boy.”