Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Reports from Citizen Journalist from Club 54
for June 15, 2010
Morning Sitting Courtroom 54 - June 15, 2010
The day began with Kevin McCullough continuing his detailed cross examination of Premier Gordon Campbell's Chief of Staff Martyn Brown. The MSM seem to be suggesting that 7 days of questioning should be more than enough, however given that Brown has had trouble remembering and that the emails and docs put to him do not help him recall key events, I can only hope that justice delayed does not become justice denied. The public needs to understand how the highest political office in BC operates and what political staff do in these jobs.
Martyn Brown was shown more emails about the Premier's office knowledge that PATRICK KINSELLA was working for BC Rail and that Kinsella wanted to attend a Prince George conference about the future of BC Rail.
It was then asked if Brown could recall any conversations he had with Bob Virk about the optics of having Patrick Kinsella at the Prince George given his close relationship to Gordon Campbell.
Brown did not recall nor did he deny those conversations took place.
After about 30 minutes of questions from Kevin McCullough, Michael Bolton began his cross examination of Brown.
This was a complete surprise to me and it looked like Martyn Brown was surprised as well. I did not understand that each of the 3 defendents are allowed to cross examination of each witness.
Each of the 30 witnesses will face a detailed cross examination about their part in the sale of BC Rail. The defence are using the government's own documents to hold witnesses accountable for their role in the sale of BC Rail. This strategy should be applauded as the public have a right to know what happens when a railway is sold to supporters of the BC Liberals.
Mr. Bolton is an experienced lawyer and began his questioning about the role of Mr. Basi in securing "validators".
Mr. Brown stated that Basi had excellent interpersonal skills and was very political. He confirmed that Basi was asked by the Premier to speak to the political staff at a retreat outside Victoria and discuss how the political staff should approach supporters of the government and why we need to be more active in stakeholder outreach. Mr. Brown stated that he probably led a standing ovation for Basi and that KELLY REICHERT from the BC Liberal Party attended.
Mr. Bolton then asked if Brown knew about Premier Campbell thanking Basi for arranging softball questions for a talkshow hosted by Rafe Mair where Campbell was facing an agressive Mair who wanted to ask the tough questions. After many of the softball callers gotten through, Rafe Mair changed his tone and Premier Campbell was very appreciative of Basi's efforts.
The next line of questioning were about Patrick Kinsella and detailed how he began work for BC Rail in the fall of 2001. Mr. Kinsella was paid close to $300,000 for his political savvy to the board of BC Rail which includes witnesses JOHN MCLERNON and BRIAN KENNING.
Mr. Brown stated that he "could not think of a good reason" why Kinsella would be paid $6-$7 thousand a month from BC Rail. An outrageous sum of money from the BC taxpayers.
Bolton asked why Kinsella who was the BC Liberal co-chair for the 2001 election campaign why BC Rail would hire a close friend of the Premier. Mr. Brown could not recall and agreed.
After a brief break, Mr. Bolton accidently referred to Mr. Brown as Mr. Kinsella. A few chuckles were heard and Justice Mackenzie corrected Bolton. Bolton has reviewed many Kinsella documents and had a slip of the tongue. I can only imagine the emails and documents where details of Patrick Kinsella's dealings with BC Rail and the government are archived.
Mr. Patrick Kinsella's dealings with BC Rail and close relationship to Campbell and other cabinet ministers will continue to be questioned by the defence in order to learn the truth about the backrooms where the deals are made in BC politics.
Citizen Journalist from 54
Afternoon Sitting Courtroom 54 - June 15, 2010
CAMPBELL INSIDER EXPOSED FOR HIS ROLE IN BC RAIL SALE
The theme of the day was Mr. Patrick Kinsella. A longtime backroom political insider that is a close confident of Gordon Campbell. Mr. Kinsella was the BC Liberal election campaign team co-chair in 2001 along with Christy Clark. According to testimony from Martyn Brown, Mr. Kinsella is also a fundraiser for the BC Liberals and has donated thousands of dollars to the BC Liberals both personally and through his company, Progressive Strategies since 2000.
The defence posed questions to Martyn Brown as to how, just 4 months after the election, a key member of Gordon Campbell's inner circle was able to secure a $300,000 contract to advise BC Rail and provide "political savvy".
Mr. Brown admitted that the optics of having Patrick Kinsella working for BC Rail following the election "were not good." When asked about was there a reason why JOHN MCLERNON hired Mr. Kinsella to advise the BC Rail, Brown responded, "I can't think of any good reason."
There was a suggestion that Premier Gordon Campbell sought opinions from Kinsella about potential BC Rail board members, given that the Premier had appointed the BC Rail board. Brown responded that Kinsella "may well have been consulted by the Premier for board appointments."
There is no doubt that Patrick Kinsella played a role with the sale of BC Rail. It was alleged in court that he had signed a confidentiality agreement regarding BC Rail, something that Martyn Brown was not aware of.
Unfortunately, Justice Mackenzie did not allow some documents to be marked as exhibits and the public cannot review them.
I will attend again tomorrow to provide my insights.
Citizen Journalist from 54
Message to Citizen Journalist from Club 54 (and others) - from kootcoot
Your eyewitness accounts from the courtroom are highly appreciated by BC Mary and all her readers. Mary has some unsual things affecting her life at present and cannot at all times be on top of the Ledge Raids for a temporary period of time. I have agreed to help monitor the blog, moderate comments and such, when I have the opportunity, my plate having other things on it as well.
For especially valuable contributions like eyewitness, daily accounts from the courtroom if one mails them to email@example.com, they may see publication faster than leaving them only as comments at the blog. Either way they will eventually be published however. Since CBC radio, TeeVee and Glow Ball all seem to be doing their best to ignore the fact this trial is even going on and the Canned Waste stable of stenographers seem to be going out of their way to minimalize the issues or miss the point entirely, contributions like yours are especially valuable.
BTW, Robin Mathews, you too, as you often do already may find sending me your copy a quicker way to get it up at Mary's place for the present.
Message to Grant G.
Without people like you, the thieves and liars (aka these so-called pillars of BC society) will succeed in turning us all into serfs (again).
My great thanks to you both. Wish I could help in some way too. All the best Mary.
So, when do they get to the part about him working for CN at the same time?
But if Brown has excused/recused himself from his civil service duties while leading into his trial appearance, why hasn't also Ms. Dauphinee, who will be a witness soon enough. it's not like a juror, and heaven knows a woman who's used to be invisible as well as unaccountable has never given a thought either to propriety or optics (other than those of her boss and rumoured bff), but shouldn't she also excuse herself from duties prior to her court appearance, and also stop patrolling the blogs, or getting her minions in the PAB to do so?
Of course, all this would have been so much easier had the government resigned long ago and given these bureaucratic hacks their pink slips (with nice big, no doubt, severance packages).