Notes on The Now's interview with Nina Grewal
As I noted, Nina Grewal has granted an exclusivve interview with the Now, which I've quoted in full here.
First, it is worth noting Nina's choice of venue. The Now is a bi-weekly free paper serving Surrey, White Rock, and North Delta. Hence we can assume that the primary purpose is to reach out to local voters. A similar purpose seems to lie behind Jim Holt's letter to Conservative party members in Gurmant's riding (as I noted here). In itself this is unremarkable. The question remains how well this can be expected to work--an interview in a local paper will not sway locals as much as a single item on the nightly news.
Second, the tone is similar to the Holt letter. Both complain about unfair treatment at the hands of the media and hint darkly at a conspiracy against them:
In an exclusive interview at her constituency office Thursday, Nina Grewal complained of media bias and Liberal spin-doctoring. The result, she said, is that people "are focused on stupid things" and not on the real issues.Nina defends Gurmant's actions as courageous, and (again like Holt's letter), mentions Inky Mark:
"This time, since they had come and talked to numerous MPs, and they had talked to Inky Mark, a member of parliament, and he didn't have any evidence, so this time we wanted to catch them red-handed, so that's what he (Gurmant) did."Since the Inky Mark episode was, as far as I can remember, first cited as a motivation for the taping in Holt's letter, we should probably assume that they are co-ordinated.
Third, the story mentions a recent interview with Shapiro about the tapes:
Both MPs appeared Thursday before ethics commissioner Dr. Bernard Shapiro in New Westminster to testify about the tape recordings.I take that to mean that this took place on July 21st.
Fourth, Nina restates her non-involvement in the taping: she was out of town.
Grewal said she wasn't at the meetings between her husband and the Liberals and had nothing to do with the tapes. "I didn't participate in the conversations," she said. "I wasn't there at all." In fact, she added, she was in Ottawa at a training session when Gurmant met the Liberals in Vancouver.I assume that she's gotten this backwards and that she was in Vancouver while the meetings were taking place in Ottawa--or perhaps the reporter's gotten in wrong.
Fifth, Nina mentions coming nominations:
Despite this "nightmare," as she puts it, Grewal says she and her husband still plan to seek re-election. Even if Gurmant Grewal decided not to, she said hypothetically, " If he wants to do that, let him do that. I'm doing my own thing."Exactly what this means is unclear--that Gurmant is thinking of not running? (But if that were the case, the Holt letter would hardly have been a wasted effort.) Or perhaps this is meant to rally supporters--'no, no, Gurmant, don't quit!'. (Frankly, however, I suspect it is more likely to be local Liberals who will be making that plea.)
Sixth, an argument from Grewal's campaign manager that we've heard before:
"The big mistake in this is there's too much. We've got a guy who for eight years was flawless and all of a sudden he releases tapes and there's six scandals in less than two and a half months? It's too much, and I think what eventually will happen is once he does get cleared the public is going to take a look and say 'All those stories that quick? Something was wrong.'"The number 6 is again repeated from the Holt letter. (It is, I have to say, a strange argument: "Your Honour. The fact that my client is charged with six offenses not one is proof that he has been framed.")