CP reports that some Volpe insiders feel their team has been targeted by the campaign team of Michael Ignatieff, which includes several high-profile Quebec Liberals.It's probably entirely true that the violation could only have been discovered due to another camp's wilful leak of confidential information. But that only spreads the wrongdoing around the party all the more, rather than actually absolving Volpe of anything.
They say the Toronto Star -- which broke the story in a report on Saturday -- reported it obtained membership lists from the Quebec wing of the party, yet those membership lists are supposed to be confidential.
The insiders argue the Star only appeared to investigate party members of Italian heritage (Volpe is an immigrant from Italy) while ignoring the recruiting practices of other campaign teams.
Second, after proudly talking up his reputation as someone whose principles won some approval from other party leaders, Stephane Dion now seems willing to shed that mantle in order to show blind faith in his party's leading embarrassment:
Montreal MP Stephane Dion, the only leadership contender from Quebec, said he knew there were concerns about party memberships but said he trusted Volpe.Presumably the move could only be calculated at winning Volpe's support (along with that of any of his non-deceased delegates). But the move smacks of a traditional Lib willingness to place entirely unwarranted trust in any excuse or denial from the party. And that can only make Dion all the more vulnerable to claims that he represents nothing more than a continuation of the Libs' ever-waning credibility.
"I'm aware of the concerns. I don't have the answers. It will be for the camp of Mr. Volpe to answer. I have confidence in Joe's honesty," he told the Star.
In sum, Volpe's latest brush with ignominy is once again only helping to highlight all the Lib faults which caused them to lose power earlier this year. And whether or not he stays in the race now, the added tarnish on the party will make it all the tougher for any new leader to claim to have taken the party in a different direction.
Update: And of the four MPs still nominally supporting Volpe, two (Lui Temelkovski and Joe Comuzzi) are also on record continuing to trust him without any apparent reservation.