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The Globe and Mail, Saturday, January 12, 2008

Floridity, memory and bafflegab

by Jane Taber With reports from Ian Bailey and Tu Thanh Ha


Hot and Not:

Hot: The menu: It's pan-Canadian and predictable. The premiers dined last night at 24 Sussex Dr. on PEI potatoes; seafood from B.C., Nova Scotia and Newfoundland; Arctic char; beef and veal from Alberta and Quebec; Quebec cheese; berries from Saskatchewan; and fruits, seeds and grains from Manitoba, New Brunswick and Ontario.

Hot: Paul Martin is the latest former prime minister to write his memoirs. Mr. Martin's book, to be published by McClelland and Stewart, will chronicle his life, from his early years to his time in government and his brief stint as prime minister. Will he take a few shots at his nemesis, Jean Chrétien? Mr. Chrétien got his licks in at Mr. Martin and his gang in his recent memoirs. Former journalist Paul Adams is helping Mr. Martin with the writing.

Not: David Orchard - the anti-free-trade activist who delivered delegates to Stéphane Dion to help him win the 2006 Liberal leadership. Mr. Orchard says he was blindsided by the leader's decision to appoint Joan Beatty, an aboriginal woman, as the candidate in the northern Saskatchewan riding where he was campaigning for the nomination. But Adam Campbell, the Alberta Liberal Party president, says that Mr. Orchard, who is a friend, is "not coming clean on this." He says Mr. Orchard was fully aware that if an aboriginal woman came forward to run, she would be appointed. Mr. Campbell says that Mr. Dion knew "David was going to be upset" by the decision but he asked him to remind Mr. Orchard "of what we are all trying to achieve here." Mr. Campbell says that Mr. Orchard "is saleable in lots of other ridings."

Hot: National Arts Centre president Peter Herrndorf for pulling together today's star-studded tribute to Oscar Peterson, who died Dec. 23. The tribute at Toronto's Roy Thomson Hall is free and open to the public. In addition to stars from the music world, such as American record producer Quincy Jones, it has drawn politicians from all parties. Two former Liberal prime ministers, Jean Chrétien and John Turner, will be there. Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty and junior minister Jason Kenney are attending, as is Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty.

An edited version of this letter was published in the Globe and Mail, Saturday, February 2, 2008
Saturday, January 12, 2008

Marjaleena Repo, letter to the Globe and Mail

Dear Editor,

I was very surprised to read the item in Jane Taber's Saturday Notebook about Alberta Liberal Party president Adam Campbell making statements as David Orchard's "friend, " discrediting Mr. Orchard from the basis of his supposed personal knowledge.

Adam Campbell is no friend of David Orchard's, although the Globe and Mail is not the first one to whom he has made that claim. He was a political acquiantance and in the Liberal leadership campaign they both supported Stephane Dion's candidacy, nothing more, and certainly is not the trustworthy and close friend he presents himself as. Clearly he is the very opposite as he makes outrageously false and self-important claims that he "knows" that Mr. Orchard was "fully aware" that an aboriginal woman might be appointed over him, (when in reality Mr. Orchard was neither consulted nor informed about the appointment, until it was offered and accepted), and that he, Adam Campbell, was asked by Mr. Dion to be a liaison between himself and Mr. Orchard. It is, of course, possible that he fooled Mr. Dion into thinking that he was a messenger for David Orchard, but he has never fooled Mr. Orchard who, once he became aware of the nature and character of Mr. Campbell, stopped returning his calls. Now we know that this caution was well deserved.

I am very disappointed that your columnist Jane Taber was so easily taken in by Mr. Campbell, without doing the most elementary fact checking with the source, Mr. Orchard himself.

Marjaleena Repo
Campaign Manager
for David Orchard

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