Stop masking Liberal fundraising as economic development

FREDERICTON – NDP Leader Dominic Cardy is criticizing a Liberal fundraising event earlier this week saying that if helping New Brunswick businesses was the goal, then it should have been an open event without the Liberals demanding payment for access.

“Mr. Gallant’s Energy Minister has confirmed that businesses which make big donations to the Liberal Party will be allowed to advance their projects. It raises the question — if businesses can benefit from an event with all four premiers, why shouldn’t we open it to all New Brunswick businesses?”

The four Atlantic Premiers, all Liberals, met in a taxpayer-funded event in Fredericton, and then held a $250-a-plate fundraiser to benefit the Gallant Liberals. Energy Minister Don Arsenault explained that access will benefit businesses, saying “This is a unique opportunity, and if we want to give access to business stakeholders and whatnot to advance their projects, their causes, hey, rightfully so.”

Cardy said “While governments have long piggybacked on public events to raise money, only the Gallant Liberals have been this brazen about their corruption. Ministers are now confirming that businesses which pay off the Liberal Party get access that others do not.”

“If this was really about helping businesses through access to all four premiers, then host a free event for all New Brunswick businesses and stop demanding bribes on the way in the door. Any event where official business is discussed should not have party officials taking payments at the door.”

Mr. Cardy concluded; “I would challenge journalists to ask Premiers McNeil, MacLauchlan, and Ball how comfortable they are headlining an event where cabinet ministers have admitted that they are selling access to advance business projects. As for Mr. Gallant, this is further proof that he only cares about creating jobs with companies that benefit him and his Liberal friends.”