Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
one to watch...
Who is this Conservative senator going to pick a fight with next?
In late March, he faced Liberal MP Justin Trudeau in a televised charity boxing match. He lost the fight in a technical knockout. This week, he took on Canadian Press reporter Jennifer Ditchburn, who broke a story about how Brazeau missed 25 per cent of the 72 sittings of the upper chamber between June 2011 and April 2012. He also missed 65 per cent of meetings at the aboriginal peoples committee on which he sits. And he was away for 31 per cent of the meetings of the human rights committee, where he is deputy chairman.
Brazeau's excuse for missing work? "The very simple answer to your question with respect to my attendance or lack thereof is for personal matters," the senator emailed in response to a request for comment. Fair enough, although most employers might want something more specific than "personal matters" -- especially after the absences threatened to outnumber the employee's actual attendance at work.
Brazeau did find the time in his busy schedule, though, to post a message on Twitter directed to Ditchburn: "while u smile Jen, others suffer. Change the D to a B in your last name and we're even! Don't mean it but needs saying."
He later tweeted an apology, but he stuck to the personal-issues defence regarding his work record: "I'm a hardworker and take my position seriously but personal issues always comes 1st. Ppl are sometimes in need. Sorry!"
Brazeau is clearly a scrapper. Too bad he doesn't feel the same urge to fight for his job. But unlike most of the rest of us Canadians, Brazeau doesn't even have to lift a finger to earn a full salary. At age 37, he's a senator for life.
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 1, 2012 J2
(1 of 23 articles for this week)