Back in the late 1970s a federal cabinet minister Francis Fox got into trouble.
He tried to assist a friend obtain an abortion. My memory is that the father’s signature was required, but that person wasn’t in the picture. Although Minister Fox was just a friend, he chose to be helpful and signed instead. He was caught.
Mr Fox resigned his position as a federal minister.
This was true parliamentary practice. Err, own up, resign the position and take your chances.
Mr. Fox wasn’t caught abusing his position. He didn’t gain from the action. He was trying to help a friend. He still took full responsibility for the action (I think it was considered forgery on an official document) and resigned.
In the end, his political career was slowed, but not damaged. He was again appointed to cabinet, and, I believe, maintained a good reputation. I tend not to vote Liberal, but consider him a worthy representative of his (riding’s) people.
We have lost this ethic. Our politicians make equally bad (if not worse) choices and do not take responsibility. They defend, deflect and in a term we used to use where I worked tap dance and cling to their position
Their leaders also defend, and tap-dance. No wonder we the voters/citizens have little respect for those who purport to represent us.
I respect Francis Fox. I am either losing or have completely lost respect for our “leaders” who tout one thing and blatantly do the opposite.
It is time for our parliamentarianss to return to the earlier more honourable ethic of conduct.