Bombshell: Lawrence Martin agreed to write column promoting Mark Carney as Liberal leader

Lawrence Martin

You don’t run across unethical journalistic admissions everyday like this one from Lawrence Martin:

In late September I got a call from a senior Liberal and long-time Carney friend. He came straight to the point. The party needed Carney and he wanted me to write a column boosting his leadership prospects.

But had he been talking to Carney? Did he have his okay to pursue this? Yes, he said. He did.

In late September I wrote a piece for iPolitics at the very end of which I raised, in a couple of paragraphs, the Carney possibility and the points the caller made. (see here)

Not only does Martin admit to being a shill for a Liberal leadership wannabee, this puts the lie to Mark Carney was not actively seeking the job.

Also: See this article from Sun News’ David Akin about Carney popping in for a beer at a Christmas gathering of Ottawa Press members here

Also: See earlier post on how Carney is friends with Macleans’ Paul Wells and the National Post’s John Ivison here

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29 Responses to “Bombshell: Lawrence Martin agreed to write column promoting Mark Carney as Liberal leader”

  1. Guffman Says:

    The really bad part of all this is that we should be shocked by such an admission, but sadly, we’re not.
    Just another day and another story of a Liberal loving media, who don’t even have the shame to hide this kind of stuff anymore.

  2. Liz J Says:

    Just a little too much smoke coming out on the Carney capers to not expect things to ignite.
    It’s hard to believe Carney can be that naive or out of the loop to either not be aware he was being recruited or know it was not kosher for a man in his position to be cavorting with the MSM or politicians in such a manner.
    When the stories started to break about him possibly making a run for the leadership of the almost defunct LPC he was a tad too quiet IMO.

  3. E Mac Says:

    Yes of course, and Bill Clinton didn’t have sex with “that woman” either. LOL

  4. Robert Connon Says:

    “Not kosher for a man in his position” Liz J as with most men/women in their elite positions they believe they do not have to play by the same rules as the rest of us peons.

  5. burton Says:

    No surprise really – I never miss a chance to lampoon him when he’s got a column up at the Globe. Especially when he gets all misty eyed waxing nostalgic about the good old days when he fellow scribes would get an invite from Chretien to play eighteen holes of golf at some posh Ottawa G.C. Cause as everyone knows, politics is just too darn nasty and mean nowadays, with Harper as PM.
    But don’t ever accuse him of bias, ok?

  6. Sandy Says:

    Ah, common on Dean. I usually agree with you. But, Carney lives in Ottawa. Everyone in that bubble are friends or know each other, no matter which political party they might work for or support.

    You are right about Lawrence Martin of course, no surprise there, but what on earth is wrong with Carney being friends with Wells and Ivison or stopping into at a press Christmas party?

    At the moment, downtown Ottawa is Carney’s world. Do you expect the man to hide out at home? I mean, given your criteria, who could he be friends with?

    • BC Blue Says:

      I can’t help you if you have no idea what a conflict of interest constitutes. If I remember correctly, this has been something you have had no idea about for quite some time now.

      • Sandy Says:

        Dean, it simply is not a conflict of interest to visit a press party no matter what you think. My former boss, the Ontario MPP, was always invited to those kinds of parties in Toronto. Conservative journalists like Christina Blizzard were there as well. Was that a conflict of interest? You draw the line too finely. Even biographers become friends with their subjects. Ti’s just human nature.

        Scenario: Let’s say Carney had discussed the Liberal leadership race. If he had decided to run, then he would have had to resign his position at the Bank of Canada. Just discussing it does not make it a conflict of interest. Doing something about it and not admitting or publicizing it is.

        I had to study the Ontario conflict of interest guidelines word by word on behalf of my boss and I can guarantee, federal or provincial, they are not as restrictive as you seem to think. I also had to submit forms for situations he was questioning and I remember the replies. Just talking to someone or socializing with someone is not a conflict of interest.

        • BC Blue Says:

          Who said going to the pub was a conflict?

        • Sandy Says:

          Re your reply at 1:50pm PST. You wrote: “Who said going to the pub was a conflict?”
          My reply relates to what you wrote: “See this article from Sun News’ David Akin about Carney popping in for a beer at a Christmas gathering of Ottawa Press members here.” The insinuation was that attending was somehow suspect or wrong.

          Actually, for anyone in Carney’s position, attending such media events is just good p.r. In fact, anyone in a position of infliuence or power, CEO, politician, Bank Governor, does that.

        • BC Blue Says:

          It was a power play made by Carney to curry favour with the media in which at least two of the bigger players are friends of his. Please don’t put words in my mouth.

        • Sandy Says:

          We may respectfully disagree with each other.

        • hollinnm Says:

          Hello he stayed at Scott Brison’s home. That is the conflict here. He can meet whomever he pleases but I am sure he can afford a hotel room or cottage for his family. Carney has done good work. No one will deny this but on this subject he is in a conflict and Carney better hope that England doesn’t rescind their offer or he will be looking for another job.

        • Sue Says:

          Great to see you commenting here Sandy. Thank You!

          PS You may be right about the conflict of interest rules but the Bay of Fundy vacation seemed far too cozy given the standing of the participants.

  7. Mark Carney’s halo in jeopardy? | Blue Like You Says:

    [...] Bombshell: Lawrence Martin agreed to write column promoting Mark Carney as Liberal leader – BC Blue. More bad optics. [...]

  8. hollinnm Says:

    Not only did he admit he is a stooge for the Liberal party but he conveniently left out the most important part of this conflict. Martin and Delacourt must be on their payroll. Carneystayed with Scott Brison. As we all know Brison is the finance critic for the Liberal party. What do we think they were talking about? It certainly wasn’t the weather. Carney stepped over the line by staying at Brison’s home and that is the scandal here.

  9. Liz J Says:

    I don’t recall any controversy when David Dodge held the post.

  10. Liz J Says:

    It also crossed my mind the Liberal brain trust thought wooing Carney would give them a candidate who might equal Stephen Harper’s economic smarts……

  11. Martin Says:

    By chance, I happen to be reading a biography of WLM King, and the events of the 1920s. One is somewhat shocked by the influence prominent Liberal editors. enjoyed, meeting with caucus, advising PM (King) on strategy, suggesting cabinet postings and so on. This was fully accepted at the time, other papers were designated tory and offered similar advice to conservatives.
    The difference in the present century is that most journalists profess a neutral stance. Given this admission from Martin, one wonders have we really progressed that much from the King era.

  12. joseph Says:

    My gut tells me this whole “conflictgate” has only come out now because Carney finally told the blu-lib team trying to recruit him that he wasn’t interested.
    They in turn decided that if they couldn’t have him nobody else should.
    So they got started dropping info to the usual media as the infamous “highly placed unnamed source”.
    Right now the blu-lib faction of the LPC is seeing a future where a young photogenic leader would be willing and ready to merge with the NDP. To stop that they need somebody with enough gravitas to stop Justin’s momentum lest they get the idea cemented in the canadian psyche that the LPC is a far left party.
    Keep yer ears peeled for rumors of Frank McKenna returning to politics.
    They are soooo screwed, no amount of media spin is going to help this time.

  13. Joe Says:

    It would seem that your are damning Carny based on third or forth hand information. Big Liberal said that Carny was OK with Martin writing a column, NOT Carny. In other words Big Liberal was trying to recruit Carny and undoubtedly part of that recruitment was showing Carny how well respected he was in the media. That Big Liberal lied to Martin seems par for the course. I have no doubt Big Liberal was doing his best. Fortunately Carny said, “No”.

  14. Joe Says:

    Hey I’m not trying to defend Carney. I read line “But had he been talking to Carney? Did he have his okay to pursue this? Yes, he said. He did.” meaning “But had Big Liberal been talking to Carney? Did Big Liberal have Carny’s okay to pursue this? Yes, Big Liberal said. Big Liberal did.” Do you trust the word of Big Liberal when Big Liberal is doing his best to inflate Carney’s ego? I don’t. I suspect that Big Liberal flat out lied in order to get his man (Carney) to run for the Liberal leadership. It would seem Big Liberal was unsuccessful. Now let’s understand what I mean by third hand information. Martin said (third) Big Liberal said (second) Carney said (first).

  15. Liz J Says:

    Maybe we better start to worry, polling apparently is still showing the Liberals will win if Justin T is leader.
    If Canada has that many brain dead voters willing to give the reins of power to a part time drama teacher, given to spouting platitudes at best and bragging about his Papa’s Charter we are really in trouble.

    • Martin Says:

      The major source of the polling is a weekly Forum poll paid for by National Post. This allows them to print the story again every week or so; by two and half years the story may get a bit stale. Forum Research is not exactly known for the accuracy of recent election predictions..

  16. Sue Says:

    Given the BofE decision, I suspect the entire subsequent story, leaked about Carney’s one week stay with trusted Liberal friends, was purely designed to bring comfort and accolades to fence-sitting beaten-up, trodden-down Liberal voters who still cannot believe that they belong to a wornout, third place, elitist party, well past its’ glory days but still somehow sucking stale oxygen.
    What a sad excuse for a party of the electorate.

  17. Jen Says:

    In the meantime Justin Trudeau woos HAMAS for more votes without the msm batting an eyelid nor have seen any liberal mp standing with Trudeau.

  18. Globe’s Martin says Harper and Trudeau had same experience | BC Blue: One BC Conservative's view on it all... Says:

    [...] Also: See earlier post where Martin admitted agreeing to write a fawning column to promote Bank of Canada’s Mark Carney for leader of the Liberal Party here [...]


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