Wednesday, February 15, 2012

URCHINS AND POLITICIANS

A Quebec politician has been forced to leave his duties as a parliamentary secretary because he’s accused of illegally fishing for sea urchin.

Georges Mamelonet, a Liberal MNA for the Gaspe riding, has stepped down as parliamentary secretary to the minister of agriculture and fisheries for what he calls a bureaucratic snarl-up.

He used to own a seafood restaurant in the Gaspe region and had a licence to fish for urchins. However the license lapsed but he continued to fish. He doesn’t deny fishing without a recognized license, but he calls the issue an administrative mix-up.

He  is in court, fighting against charges that could bring fines of up to $100,000.

In this province only a few resignations as a result of wrong doing come to mind: PC Cabinet Minister Jim Morgan was forced out of his job for allegedly jigging salmon (later found not guilty but he will be forever remembered as Jigger Jim);  Liberal Jim Walsh was fired out-the door for allegedly accepting a cash donation. He was later invited back into the cabinet. (and proceeded to loot his MHA's constituency budget and serve time in jail for it).; Wildlife Minister , P.C. Charlie Power was caught operating a snow machine in a protected wilderness area while he was the province's wildlife minister. He went on to be elected as a Member of Parliament;Transportation Minister, Charlie Brett had to resign after it was learned he used a departmental flat bed to move his boat; Ed Byrne resigned after the AG questioned his spending habits - he later went to jail.

There is is some irony in the sea urchin story. It is worth noting that a spiny little urchin forced a politician wo resign when so many politicians lack a spine in the first place.

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