Mulcair tells Fantino to do the honourable thing ‘for once in his life’ and resign
Jake Edmiston | December 11, 2014 | Last Updated: Dec 11 5:00 PM ET
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NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, left, and Minister of Veterans Affairs Julian Fantino.
Adrian Wyld / The Canadian PressNDP Leader Tom Mulcair, left, and Minister of Veterans Affairs Julian Fantino.
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In its strongest terms yet, the opposition demanded the ouster of Veteran Affairs Minster Julian Fantino — with NDP leader Tom Mulcair calling on him to “finally, for once in his life, do the honourable thing and resign.”
Mulcair’s choice of phrase was a particularly loaded one, considering Mr. Fantino’s decades-long career as a police officer and a five-year stint as the Toronto Police chief.
“This person has caused the harm,” Mr. Mulcair shouted. “And he says it’s somebody else’s fault? No, Mr. Speaker, he’s responsible.
“What is he waiting for?”
Mr. Fantino has been dogged by calls for his walking papers in recent weeks — stemming, in part, from an Auditor General’s report on his department. But with the House of Commons winding down ahead of a holiday recess, the NDP seemed determined to land a death blow.
“The minister of veterans affairs is living on another planet,” NDP deputy critic for veterans affairs Sylvain Chicoine said. “It’s more than time for the Prime Minister to give a great gift to veterans and fire this minister.”
With the Prime Minister not in the House Thursday, Mr. Fantino responded directly to calls for his sacking — leaning on his list of “programs and services” available to veterans and noting pro-veteran initiatives the opposition voted against.
“We take no lessons from a party [the NDP] that speaks one thing and does another,” Mr. Fantino said.