YES, she’s back – after all that tearful drama when a shrewd Vancouver-Mount Pleasant MLA Kwan announced on March 21 that she would pay back $34,922 for travel expenses charged to Vancouver charity Portland Hotel Society (very conveniently blaming her ex-husband for it) and take an unpaid leave of absence as an MLA. That was all to win our sympathy and take the heat off her.
But on Wednesday, Kwan was back with NDP Leader Adrian Dix (this is the guy who was “fired after forging a memo to cover for Premier Glen Clark,” as the ad by the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association put it in last year’s election) who actually had the cheek to call her “courageous” for taking responsibility for her husband’s actions! He said Kwan was “a person of honour.”
Really, Dix? According to whose standards? Yours?
I really liked the way that The Province’s Michael Smyth tore a strip off Kwan, graphically exposing her HYPOCRISY – and in the process, that of Dix and the NDP.
She had claimed that her ex-husband had told her that the trips to Europe and Disneyland with him and her two kids were not being paid by the PHS where he was director of policy research and funding development.
Smyth mocked Kwan for being so oblivious to what was taking place right under her nose (talk of an MLA being on the ball!)
Smyth noted: “Let’s assume the booze, spa visits and flowers were part of the “family portion” she thought her husband paid.
“What about the hotels? What was the room rate?
““I have no idea,” Kwan said Wednesday, even though the room rates are disclosed in the audits.
One hotel room in the U.K., for example, cost $871 a night.”
Smyth wondered if Kwan ever bothered to ask herself: “Why is a society that serves the poorest of the poor paying for such opulence?”
Then he bluntly asked: “What about the $12,028 in limousine rides society executives billed? What about the $8,395 in spa treatments?
“What about the $69,000 in bills at Vancouver’s finest restaurants, including Bishop’s, Tojo’s and Gotham Steakhouse (where a bone-in New York strip costs $61.95)?”
And – are you ready for this? – the Vancouver Sun reported that Kwan, who represents one the poorest neighbourhoods in the country, lives in a $1.9-MILLION home!
Ah, NOW, we know why Kwan thought nothing about spending so lavishly – all, of course, at the expense of the poor people!
If Kwan has an iota of shame, she should resign – but don’t hold your breath!
INDEED, the NDP’s credibility is taking blow after blow.
As I pointed out last month: “Kwan was one of the leaders of the small group of MLAs who forced then-NDP leader Carole James to step down. Many angry and bitter NDP supporters feel that if James had stayed on, the party would have been power today. James’ successor Adrian Dix completely messed up the election campaign last year.”
I wonder if at any stage she will also end up sabotaging John Horgan, if and when he becomes the next leader as is most likely at this stage.
Let me repeat what I wrote a couple of weeks ago on this issue: “The NDP’s credibility is only getting WORSE – their press statements against the government hardly evoke any interest among the general public – it’s like: We know the Liberals are a bunch of crooks, BUT the NDP are the same IF not worse!
“I also wonder to what extent the WHITE MALE MLAs have held back from attacking Kwan because of the RACE factor – especially when it also involves a female.”
And talking about ethnic stuff, what about all the attacks that the NDP’s Chinese-Canadian leaders spearheaded against then-Liberal MLA Kash Heed, who the vicious RCMP especially targeted because he wanted to replace them with a provincial police force? I thoroughly exposed the RCMP’s disgraceful conduct in that case.
One of the guys involved in attacking Heed was none other than Gabriel Yiu (who as the NDP candidate from Vancouver-Fraserview lost again in the last election!)
The party actually devised a scheme in which publicly-funded constituency money was used to conduct party activities such as, according to the Liberals, Yiu, more than $300,000 for multicultural outreach services.
When I questioned the then-NDP caucus chairman Shane Simpson about it last year before the provincial election, he wouldn’t tell me the exact amount paid out to Yiu. But he admitted: “I mean we paid him over five years … essentially from about 2006 until he announced his intention to seek the nomination this time, we have paid him off and on at different times contractually. … It’s a significant amount of money.” He said: “He was a contractor for our caucus.”
Interestingly, Yiu wrote a series of highly partisan articles in South Asian newspapers over the years and I still wonder why the NDP had to use a Chinese-Canadian to reach out to South Asians! Didn’t they trust their own South Asian MLAs?