Tory staffer becomes latest cause celebre in robocall spat

OTTAWA, Ont. — Michael Sona has joined the ranks of other jilted Conservatives who suddenly find themselves defended and used by the official Opposition.

OTTAWA, Ont. — Michael Sona has joined the ranks of other jilted Conservatives who suddenly find themselves defended and used by the official Opposition.

The young Tory staffer recently resigned as assistant to MP Eve Adams after unidentified sources were quoted as saying the Conservative party was investigating his possible role in placing controversial robocalls in Guelph, Ont., during the last federal election.

The sources were first mentioned in a report by the Sun News network.

No evidence has emerged yet that suggest Sona was involved, and he has insisted he had nothing to do with alleged voter suppression when he worked on the local campaign.

Now the official Opposition is holding him up as proof the Conservatives are trying to cover up the actions of more senior operatives. Elections Canada is currently investigating the Guelph matter, and has received thousands of contacts from Canadians on the robocall issue.

“We now understand that the Conservative party leaked the name of a 23-year-old staffer and tried to finger him as the mastermind behind this corruption,” said NDP ethics critic Charlie Angus.

“Why are the Conservatives so desperate to throw this kid under the bus? Who are they hiding and why are they using him as their victim to protect the party?”

Added colleague Alexandre Boulerice: “From the beginning, they want us to be believe that a volunteer orchestrated electoral fraud of this degree with no help, as if Michael Sona has the money, technological resources and access to lists to organize thousands of fraudulent calls.”

Other Conservatives have also been suddenly held up as unwitting victims by the opposition in other controversies.

Former junior cabinet minister Helena Guergis went from pariah to cause celebre on the opposition benches after she was turfed from caucus by Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

The Bloc Quebecois suggested former staffer Sebastien Togneri had been “thrown to the lions” when he resigned after being found to have meddled in a number of access-to-information files.

The Bloc and the Liberals said Togneri couldn’t have been operating without the knowledge of more senior Conservatives.

Dean Del Mastro, parliamentary secretary to the prime minister, responded to the Sona questions by repeating the government’s counter-attacks on the NDP and particularly the Liberals.

“What we know is that the NDP has had to apologize for a number of outrageous allegations and smears that it has made recently,” Del Mastro said.

“We know that the opposition in fact placed illegal calls in the last election. We call on them to co-operate and participate with Elections Canada so it can get to the bottom of this.”

Many Canadians have come forward to say they received misleading calls during the last federal election that directed them to an erroneous polling station to vote.

Just Posted

Rebels drop home opener to Oil Kings

The Edmonton Oil Kings were simply better than the Red Deer Rebels… Continue reading

Sylvan Lake cleanup cancelled

Weather prompts cancellation

Alzheimer Society’s COFFEE BREAK campaign is back

Raising money to help families with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia

Orr wins UCP nomination

Lacombe-Ponoka MLA continues as UCP representative

RDC Kings topple Medicine Hat College Rattlers

Kings Matheus Alves scores twice in the win

RDC Kings topple Medicine Hat College Rattlers

Kings Matheus Alves scores twice in the win

Nurse leads Canada over South Korea 82-63 at FIBA Women’s World Cup

TENERIFE, Spain — Kia Nurse poured in 29 points to lift Canada… Continue reading

Aretha Franklin exhibit debuts with eye toward her legacy

DETROIT — The Detroit museum that hosted Aretha Franklin’s public visitations after… Continue reading

‘Anaana’s Tent’ passes Inuit songs, legends, language to a new generation

In Pangnirtung, Nunavut, on the eastern tip of Baffin Island, Rita Claire… Continue reading

Housing data decision opens door to real estate innovation, say realtors

TORONTO — Realtor Daniel Steinfeld has wanted to post home sales data… Continue reading

Ty Long kicks winning field goal, Lions come back to beat Ticats in OT

VANCOUVER — Ty Long was eager for a special moment, and he… Continue reading

Indigenous eateries take centre stage in Canada thanks to increasing awareness

VANCOUVER — Since Paul Natrall started serving Indigenous cuisine from his Mr.… Continue reading

Canada’s capital region reeling after intense tornado rips through communities

OTTAWA — Parts of Canada’s national capital were still reeling Saturday after… Continue reading

Coaches, players on Alberta university rugby team buckle up for the Broncos

LETHBRIDGE, Alta. — The head coach of the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns… Continue reading

Most Read