Q: Is it fair to question Senator Patrick Brazeau’s Judgement?
A: I won’t weigh in on Senator Brazeau’s Senate attendance record, but his Tweet, in response to Jennifer Ditchburn’s article, was ill-advised and definitely calls into question his maturity; so, yes, in my opinion, it is fair.
Background: Who the heck is Patrick Brazeau? Conservative Senator Patrick Brazeau is just one of a total of forty-three Senate appointments made by Stephen Harper. He is an Algonquin from the Kitigan Zibi Reserve, near Maniwaki Quebec and previously served as the National Chief of the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples. He is still in his thirties and is not due to retire from the Senate until November 11, 2049.
Recently, in response to a Canadian Press article questioning his Senate attendance record, Senator Brazeau Tweeted the CP reporter, “@jenditchburn while u smile Jen, others suffer. Change the D to a B in your last name and we’re even! Don’t mean it but needs saying.”
Although my wife’s uncle was also a Canadian Senator, I’ve frequently questioned the value of the Senate. For whatever reason, it has proven difficult to reform the senate, I wonder if it would be easier to abolish it? Stephen Harper has set a record by appointing forty-three (43) Senators. Compare that to Pierre Trudeau’s 5, Brian Mulroney’s 14, Jean Chrétien’s 26 and Paul Martin’s 15 (one of Martin’s 15, was Conservative). I could have sworn that the Harper Government campaigned stating that it would save the taxpayers’ money and reduce Government costs. The base, annual salary of a Canadian Senator is $132,300 (2010) and the benefits package is apparently very impressive. Abolishing the Senate would save taxpayers tens of millions of dollars every year and it would also streamline Canada’s governance.
Humorous note: Perhaps the Harper Government’s Senate appointments were part of Stephen Harper’s ‘jobs and prosperity’ initiative and not patronage.
- Senator Patrick Brazeau calls journalist a bitch after she reports his poor attendance record
- Truant Tory senator apologizes for sexist slur at reporter