Friday, November 9, 2012

Perhaps, he said "I'm here in the lobby"?

When Bill Belsey opened up his email a year ago, who knew that his mail would have such long lasting repercussions.

The email that Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training Minister Pat Bell forwarded to Bill Belsey one year ago may be long forgotten by the two principles in the exchange, however, it may prove to be yet another problem for Premier Christy Clark.

Mr. Belsey, the current Vice President of the BC Liberal Party and the former MLA for the North Coast  became central to the political spotlight earlier this week, when the Globe and Mail relayed the details of the electronic missive from Minister Bell

A correspondence which provided some background information for Mr. Belsey on the Skeena Cellulose file, information that some suggest perhaps should have remained within the realm of official government eyes only.

The imagery of it all is certainly damaging to the Premier and her party. The latest  in bad news days, in what of late seems to be quite a number of less than helpful moments from her ministers.

Vaughn Palmer of the Vancouver Sun observes today that the circumstances of the Bell to Belsey email, when coupled with a few other correspondences and requests in recent times, paints a rather unsavoury picture of how the BC Liberals conduct their business.

The NDP seem set to make much political hay over yet another Liberal politician sending information to a lobbyist, however, if the Tyee's research proves correct, there may be some question as to whether Mr. Belsey is even a registered lobbyist in the province.

From the Tyee: " Belsey's name did not, however, appear in The Tyee's search of the province's registry of lobbyists. Nor does Sun Wave's name appear. The deputy registrar of lobbyists, Mary Carlson, also checked. "There's nothing under his name," she said. "The registry is not producing any report showing his registration either as a consultant lobbyist or an in-house lobbyist."

As the email grabs another day of the news cycle, the Bell correspondence would seem to be providing  the kindling for yet another brush fire for the Premier to put out, raising yet more eyebrows at the Liberal's handling of the day to day affairs of the province.

CBC News-- B. C. Cabinet minister under fire for release of email
Victoria Times Colonist-- NDP questions Bell's email to insider, lobbyist
Globe and Mail-- B. C. Jobs Minister must be investigated after e-mail shared, NDP critic says
Vancouver Sun-- Optics of Bell's email stink: NDP B. C. minister forwarded cabinet email to lobbyist: NDP

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