Brazeau, Duffy and Wallin suspended

Senators Patrick Brazeau, Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin. (Chris Wattie/Reuters)

Senators Patrick Brazeau, Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin. (Chris Wattie/Reuters)

Mark Dunn, Senior National Reporter

, Last Updated: 6:47 PM ET

OTTAWA — Three senators under criminal investigation for fraud and breach of trust were given the boot Tuesday after weeks of drama, bombshell accusations, procedural fumbles and emotional pleas for clemency.

The Senate voted to evict three of its own for spending violations — a historic ouster that punts Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau to the curb for the remainder of the session — likely two years.

The trio will not receive a salary, but will retain medical, dental and life insurance after the original motions to heave them were softened after a handful of Tories pleaded for leniency and denounced the indictments against them.

They also get to keep their honourable titles while suspended.

Wallin and Brazeau were in the Senate when their fate was decided. Duffy was at home resting for a heart procedure Friday.

A fourth senator under investigation — Liberal appointee Mac Harb — dodged the purge after repaying $231,000 in claims and abruptly resigning this summer to collect a $123,000 pension.

An emotional Wallin thanked those senators who either abstained or voted against the motion and took a shot at a process that prevented the condemned senators from defending themselves.

"I think it's an extremely sad day for democracy if we can't expect the rule of law in Canada, then where on earth can we expect it," she said.

Duffy's allegations of a cover-up and conspiracy orchestrated by the Prime Minister's Office to force him to accept $90,000 from Stephen Harper's former chief of staff, Nigel Wright, continued to reverberate Tuesday.

Duffy produced a letter from the RCMP dated Nov. 1 that seeks correspondence he said exists to prove his claims his housing allowances were in order and that he was coached by the PMO to lie about where he got the money.

The Mounties want e-mails from the PMO relating to a "script" he says he was coerced into following to show he took out a bank loan to repay the $90,000.

"The existence of such documentation may potentially be evidence by criminal wrongdoing by others," said RCMP Supt. Biage Carrese.

Harper was grilled about the RCMP requests in the Commons and said his office would co-operate fully with the investigation and repeated that he was unaware of the Wright-Duffy scheme and others implicated in the scandal.

"I did not know about any payment from Mr. Wright to Mr. Duffy or about the story to deceive Canadians about that ... and had my authorization been sought it would not have been granted," he said.

Mark.Dunn@sunmedia.ca

Twitter: @MarkDunnSun

RCMP seeking info

 


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