Update: Please see mama mea culpa at bottom of the post.
Remember when John van Dongen went rogue(ish) way back in 2012 and asked British Columbia's Conflict of Interest Commissioner, Paul Fraser, to look into then GordCo Inc. minister Christy Clark's role in RailGate.
And remember when said Conflict Commissioner had to recuse himself and bring in an outside arbiter.
You know, the following as reported at the time by Justine Hunter of the Globe:
A conflict-of-interest probe into allegations against Premier Christy Clark will now be handled by an out-of-province lawyer, giving Independent MLA John van Dongen fresh hope that some of his questions about the long-running BC Rail case will be answered before the next provincial election...
...Last week, Mr. van Dongen questioned (Conflict Commissioner) Mr. (Paul) Fraser’s impartiality, saying there was a “reasonable apprehension of bias” because the conflict commissioner’s son is connected to Ms. Clark’s government.
In a statement Tuesday, Mr. Fraser maintained that his son’s career did not inhibit his ability to handle the matter, but said the perception of bias could not be ignored...
Now we have this, as reported by Mark Hume in the Globe today:
B.C. Conflict of Interest Commissioner Paul Fraser has launched an investigation into complaints about politicians raising funds by selling access to exclusive events.
New Democrat MLA David Eby and Democracy Watch co-founder Duff Conacher recently filed separate complaints after media reports that Premier Christy Clark attended fundraising events at which people paid thousands of dollars for exclusive access to her.
Mr. Fraser told the complainants he will issue one opinion on the two complaints...
Here's a question we can't help asking, in the here and now (i.e. 2016)...
Why, exactly, is the Conflict Commissioner himself now ignoring the perception of bias in a matter pertaining to Ms. Clark given the fact that the Commissioner's son is still, it would appear, in the employ of Ms. Clark's government as an OIC-appointed Deputy Minister?
And, just in case you were also wondering, being a deputy minister in Ms. Clark's government is not the younger Mr. Fraser's only connection to Ms. Clark.
Update: In the original postscript to this post I incorrectly indicated that both the 2012 and 2016 Globe and Mail stories quoted here were under Justine Hunter's byline, which was incorrect (Mark Hume wrote the more recent 2016 story)....As a result, I said that I found it curious that the 'conflicty' aspect of the first story had not made its way into the second story...The implication was that Ms. Hunter (and/or her editor) may have either forgotten about the conflictyness or decided not to include it...That, clearly, was unfair to Ms. Hunter and for that I apologize.