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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Doing the Math on Peter Penashue’s stolen election.



Peter Penashue spent about $88,000 ($4000 too much) on this election to the riding of Newfoundland and Labrador in 2011 meaning he spent about $21 for each vote he received. In theory that additional $4000 at $21 per vote could have generated an additional 190 votes which was 3x his margin of victory. Would it not be reasonable to think that the illegal $4000 in spending bought Penashue’s victory?


Not scientific I agree, but still it leaves you wondering how this extra money changed the vote in such a close race. This margin is far lower than many of the elections currently being challenged in the Supreme Court of Canada over robo call allegations.

It also has me questioning the lax penalties of $1000 and/or 3 months in gaol. I would suggest that both the party, the EDA and the Candidate should be fined 10x the amount of overspending. This would force the Candidate to ensure his books were right, ensure the EDA reigned in the campaign team and maintained oversight, and it would make the Party pay closer attention to what the EDAs were doing.

As it is $1000 and/or 3 months in gaol are simply the costs of doing business and will defer few zealots from breaking the rules considering the prize.

Also an issue in Penashue’s campaign was the apparent borrowing of money from a First Nations community fund to run his election after they started bouncing cheques. It starts sounding really shady when you find out this fund was run by his brother-in-law and is supposed to be used to boost economic activity not be used as a family savings and loan.

Another ethically challenged Conservative MP with a questionable claim to his seat, must be Tuesday... er.. or Wednesday, maybe Friday.  When will it stop?

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1 comment:

Sudbury Steve said...

I'm also troubled by the assertion that Penashue struck a deal with a local airline to fly him and his entourage around the riding during the campaign, for a mere $7,000 flat rate. It seems this "special deal" was not available to other candidates, and that the true value of air fare was not declared by Penashue's campaign.

This is just dirty.