Morneau under fire from opponents over conflict of interest allegations

Morneau under fire from opponents over conflict of interest allegations
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OTTAWA — Finance Minister Bill Morneau is under fire from both sides of the House of Commons today for his involvement in a pension bill that opponents say could benefit his former company.

Ethics commissioner Mary Dawson is examining Morneau’s involvement in the pension bill, which could benefit a firm in which he owned some $21 million worth of shares.

Conservative House leader Candice Bergen says Dawson’s examination of Morneau’s involvement in the pension bill is the latest probe related to the Liberal government — and she questions how Canadians can still trust them.

New Democrat MP Nathan Cullen says the Liberal government’s pension bill is not only an attack on workers’ pensions, it’s a massive conflict of interest involving Morneau.

In defending his embattled finance minister today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is accusing political opponents of attacking the integrity of the federal ethics watchdog.

Morneau has been facing intense criticism about his integrity for months now after information surfaced showing that, based on Dawson’s advice, he had not divested or placed those shares in a blind trust.

The latest criticisms come as a Globe and Mail report says Dawson was alerted in September that Morneau could be in a conflict of interest over the pension bill and its potential benefits for the firm, Morneau Shepell.

Dawson, however, only opened an examination earlier this month.

The Canadian Press

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