Wednesday, June 10, 2009

James Moore Lied About Cadman Tapes

When the story broke about the Tories trying to buy independent MP Chuck Cadman's vote with a million dollar insurance policy, the PMO's office was working overtime trying to find a way to spin the story, and if possible, blame it on the opposition.

As the the government's point man on the Cadman file, Jay Moore was everywhere, telling anyone who'd listen that the tape had been doctored. As stories like this go, it took on a life of it's own, until it eventually became an outright accusation, that it was the Liberal Party that had tampered with evidence.

Of course this was sheer nonsense, but it didn't stop them from launching a libel suit against the Liberal Party of Canada, and in fact defame them in the public arena.

You'll notice in the Toronto Star photo the image of James Moore against a backdrop reading 'Incomplete ... Fabricated Soundbite ... Doctored a number of times'. Don't know what backdrop he used when the forensics lab found that it wasn't doctored, though this reminds me of the way the Tories are now 'doctoring' old tapes of Michael Ignatieff in their attack ads.

Cadman tape 'doctored,' Tories say
Harper seeking court order to block further use by Liberals
Jun 05, 2008 04:30 AM
Tonda MacCharles Ottawa Bureau

OTTAWA–The Conservative party says a tape of Stephen Harper's conversation with a B.C. author about "financial considerations" offered a dying MP was "doctored" and it is seeking a court order to block the Liberals from further use or reference to it.

MP James Moore told reporters yesterday that the party hired two audio specialists to analyze the September 2005 tape and they found it had been altered.
(later forensics lab found that none of the conversation had been altered. Stephen Harper would have known that))

"The (Tom) Zytaruk tape is completely discredited," Moore said.

The tape has been at the centre of politically explosive allegations, made by Cadman's widow, Dona, and other family members, that the Tories offered B.C. independent MP Chuck Cadman a $1 million life insurance policy in exchange for his support on a key vote in Parliament in May 2005 that could have brought down the minority government of Paul Martin.

Tory officials have denied the $1 million offer and Harper has sued the Liberals for libel for suggesting he and his party attempted to bribe Cadman for his vote.

He is now seeking a court order to prevent further use of it by the Liberals.

In the widely circulated recording, Harper tells Zytaruk, the author of a book on Cadman, that an offer was made to the dying independent MP "to replace financial considerations he might lose due to an election."

The Prime Minister has said repeatedly since then that Cadman, a former Reform and Tory MP, was only offered the chance to return to the Conservative party, and financial help in his re-election bid.

In a sworn affidavit made public yesterday, Harper, who was Opposition leader at the time of the interview, says: "The financial matters that I spoke about during my interview with Mr. Zytaruk only related to normal nomination and election campaign expenses that would be incurred by any candidate."

Harper said the party "was prepared to assist Chuck Cadman in securing his nomination and to ensure, financially and otherwise, that he was able to conduct a successful election campaign as a Conservative party candidate."

"When I was interviewed by Mr. Zytaruk, this was my understanding of the purpose of the meeting that (campaign director) Tom Flanagan and (political operations director) Doug Finley had with Chuck Cadman that took place on May 19, 2005.

"Somebody has doctored this audiotape by deleting parts of that interview," Harper states in the affidavit. (Found not to be true. Nothing doctored)

Conservatives have not said who they think might have doctored the tape. They have not sued the author, Zytaruk, or his publisher.

Zytaruk, whose Cadman biography, Like a Rock, quotes Harper, denies editing the tape he provided to the Conservatives or to media. Harper and his legal team say the truth of the entire conversation
lies in the clicks and gaps on a copy of the original tape.

The Conservatives ratcheted up the rhetoric yesterday by calling a news conference to highlight expert audio analyses they commissioned for the libel suit.

The Liberals said they will not cease using the Prime Minister's own words, but leader St├ęphane Dion said that if an injunction were issued after the scheduled Sept. 16 hearing, they "will respect the law."

Zytaruk provided Harper's lawyer with what he says was a complete and unedited copy of the entire conversation that he recorded, and yesterday he stuck to that claim.

In Surrey, B.C., yesterday, Zytaruk said the entire tape was given to the Conservatives and he said he has no reason to have doctored the recording.

"I would have to have rocks in my head to do that," said Zytaruk. "Why would I do that? I'm not the politician here."

But Harper says their entire conversation was five to 10 minutes long. The tape runs only two minutes, 47 seconds.

At the news conference, Moore (Port Moody-Westwood-Port Coquitlam) cited American sound engineer
Tom Owen, of Owl Investigations. Owen has been used by authorities to analyze the authenticity of Osama bin Laden tapes.

"I have concluded with scientific certainty that this (Zytaruk) tape has been edited and doctored to misrepresent the event as it actually occurred," Owen states.

Owen notes an edit after a Zytaruk question: "I mean, there was an insurance policy for a million dollars for Dona" [CLICK/edit] and "Do you know anything about that?" Harper answers: "I don't know the details. I know there were discussions."

The result is it appears Harper was admitting there was such an offer to begin with, which Harper flatly denies in his affidavit.

Harper's spokesperson, Dimitri Soudas, said in an email "the edits change what the PM told Zytaruk during that interview."

"When the PM says he does not know the details, he is not answering a question about the insurance policy for Dona."

Liberals deny doctoring Cadman tape in lawsuit defence
Juliet O'Neill ,
Canwest News Service
July 04, 2008

OTTAWA - The Liberals say any suggestions in Prime Minister Stephen Harper's lawsuit that they are involved in doctoring a tape recording in the Chuck Cadman affair are "outrageous, scandalous, politically motivated" and completely without foundation.

The federal Liberal party's statement of defence, submitted to court Friday, responds to Harper's latest legal claim for $1 million in damages for "misappropriation of personality" and for an injunction to stop the Liberals from using an "incomplete and doctored" tape of Harper talking to Cadman biographer Tom Zytaruk. (ha, ha, ha ... 'misappropriation of personality'??? Harper has a personality????)

Emphasizing that Zytaruk stands by the tape as unaltered and unedited, the Liberals assert that Harper's latest claim is "fundamentally incompatible with the right to freedom of political expression" and is an attempt by the governing Conservative party to silence the official opposition on a matter of significant public interest.

If the tape recording has caused any damage to the prime minister, the Liberals argue, Harper contributed to it himself by refusing to explain his own words on the tape and by refusing to explain what he alleges is missing from the tape of a conversation he had with Zytaruk on Sept. 9, 2005.

In the tape, widely broadcast by the media and cited by Liberals as evidence that the prime minister knew of an alleged attempt to bribe Cadman, Harper is heard saying that an offer to Cadman "was only to replace financial considerations he might lose during an election.

"The Liberals questioned the government for months about allegations by Cadman's widow, daughter and son-in-law that the MP told them before he died of cancer that two unidentified (now identified as Doug Finlay and Tom Flanagan) Conservative officials offered him a $1-million insurance policy in exchange for his vote in the House of Commons in May, 2005, a vote that could have brought down the Liberal government of Paul Martin.

Cadman, an Independent MP, allegedly refused the offer, which came to light in Zytaruk's biography earlier this year.

Cadman's wife, Dona, has since said she believed Harper when he looked her in the eyes and said he knew nothing of an insurance policy offer. And Harper and his spokesmen have repeatedly said the only offer to Cadman was for financial and other assistance to run for the Conservatives in an election if the government was defeated.

Although they have cited the tape in a fundraising appeal to supporters, the Liberals deny they have any proprietary interest in the tape, a factor considered in some "misappropriation of personality" cases.

Harper's claim is on top of a $2.5-million libel suit he launched in May, accusing the Liberals of "reckless indifference to the truth... maliciously repeating false, heinous, excessive, extreme and totally unreasonable allegations," based on a partial tape recording and an unproofed excerpt from an unpublished version of Zytaruk's book.

Harper's new claim does not directly accuse the Liberals of editing or doctoring the tape, but repeatedly says "someone" did so and accuses the Liberals of exploiting the tape to portray the prime minister "in a false light for political gain and partisan purposes."

The extra $1-million claim was filed as an amendment to the libel suit June 5, a day after B.C. Conservative MP James Moore, the government's point man on the Cadman file, held a news conference to explain expert analysis that Zytaruk's tape is incomplete and doctored.

Harper's claim said the Liberal party was "informed that the edited and doctored audiotape was incomplete, edited and not credible but consistently ignore this fact."The defendants have used the edited and doctored audiotape to wrongly usurp the plaintiff of his right to control his own image and to portray the plaintiff in a false light," it said. The Liberal defence asks the court to dismiss Harper's claims with costs.

Harper dropped the lawsuit after it was proven that the tape had not been doctored, but still refuses to address the issue.

More Postings on the Cadman Affair:

1. Tories Break the Law in Cadman Affair

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