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Yet more proof the Liberals care about Quebec, not the west

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Something important happened Friday. In a much earlier age — like, a month ago — it would probably have made big headlines. But that was before federal Liberals began devouring themselves bit by bit over a scandal they insist is a total figment of the imagination of their former justice minister.

Social media can only handle one outburst of moral fervour at a time, so the important thing that happened got buried away where people wouldn’t notice. Except in western Canada, which doesn’t count. Because with a big scandal in Ottawa that centres on a large company in Quebec, who cares about that part of the country west of Ontario?

The important thing that happened was a ruling from the National Energy Board. It was identified as a “Reconsideration” of its original ruling on the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, because a court found the first ruling inadequate and ordered a retry. The retry once again concluded the project should go ahead, while tacking on 16 new recommendations to the 156 conditions already demanded.

Until Jody Wilson-Raybould’s conscience came along, Trans Mountain was right up there with the most pressing matters facing the Trudeau government, which snapped up ownership of the pipeline after so badly bungling the issue that the original builder opted to back out. But Friday’s NEB ruling slipped by with all the fanfare of a statement from the federal fisheries minister celebrating Cod Replenishment Day.

Even in the provinces that would be most affected by the pipeline, reaction was muted. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley did not perform a handstand while barking “Take that, Jason Kenney!” Instead she observed warily, “It’s not a victory, but it’s an incredibly important step.”


© National Post