August 22, 2019 10:00 am

Scott Thompson: Why can’t the ethics commissioner speak at the ethics committee?

WATCH: Liberal MPs have blocked the opposition's attempt to get Canada's Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion to testify about his damning report on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau breaking rules in the SNC-Lavalin affair.

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The ethics commissioner, it turns out, will not be testifying in front of the ethics committee on the report he was commissioned by them to report on.

The Liberal-dominated committee voted down the request by both opposition parties to have Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion answer questions about his report.

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That report, of course, confirmed the prime minister and his staff pressured then-attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould and her office to reverse their decision not to grant SNC-Lavalin a Deferred Prosecution Agreement to avoid charges of corruption and bribery, for which the public prosecutor felt they did not qualify.

READ MORE: Liberals block bid to call ethics watchdog to committee even as wildcard MP breaks ranks

The Liberal-picked ethics commissioner was standing by to testify if needed, but would never get the chance to recognize his report or answer questions concerning it.

That should be no surprise, considering the ethics panel voted earlier in the year to shut down the committee from investigating further into the SNC-Lavalin scandal.

Although the committee did previously call former ethics commissioner Mary Dawson to report on Trudeau’s family vacation on the Aga Khan’s private island, about which she determined Trudeau violated his position for the first time.

WATCH: (Aug. 18, 2019) Ethics, accountability, the Trudeau brand and pollsters

But other than an election on the horizon, not much has changed.

Questions remain, like why the ethics commissioner was not allowed access to certain information or staff, including clerk of the privy council Michael Wernick who retired early in the wake of the scandal.

READ MORE: Liberals’ chance at re-election unhindered by SNC-Lavalin affair, new poll suggests

Despite promising to be different, ​it’s obvious the Liberals are shutting down this process, realizing that after their last circus of mismanagement, this is the last thing they need heading into a federal election.

Best to let sleeping dogs lie, if you can get them to settle.

It kind of reminds us of Donald Trump’s obsession over Robert Mueller testifying after his report was released on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.

Can you image the outrage if Mueller was not allowed to speak? There would be anarchy.

Yet in Canada, our federal ethics commissioner must remain silent.

Scott Thompson is the host of The Scott Thompson Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML.​​​​​​​

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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