WATCH ABOVE: Nigel Wright took the stand to explain why he gave Mike Duffy a $90,000 cheque to pay off his senate expenses – and shed some light on what Stephen Harper knew about it. Laura Stone reports.
Hundreds of pages of emails were presented as evidence as Nigel Wright, Stephen Harper’s former chief of staff, testified at Senator Mike Duffy’s trial on Wednesday.
The emails detail the machinations that went on behind the scenes in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) as Wright and other staff attempted to manage the Duffy situation.
READ MORE: Harper didn’t know Mike Duffy wouldn’t use his own money to repay claims, Nigel Wright says
Here are some things we learned from those emails:
1. The PMO carefully managed Duffy’s repayment and statements about it.
The image below shows a draft statement prepared for the senator and its goals.
2. The PMO reviewed a statement that accompanied Duffy’s $90,000 repayment, but said they were not involved in writing it.
3. Nigel Wright was “beyond furious” to learn just how much money Duffy owed – but he paid it anyway.
4. Wright was worried about Duffy “going squirrelly” on weekend television shows.
5. Duffy was very upset by a Global News story – and PMO was baffled by his responses to Global reporters, since he had already paid back the money that they were asking about. Wright also said that he would “unleash Tkachuk” (Conservative Senator David Tkachuk) if Duffy tried to get back any of the money.
Global also got a notable mention earlier in the year in this (probably sarcastic) email exchange:
Read the full text of Nigel Wright’s emails below.
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Harper didn’t know Mike Duffy wouldn’t use his own money to repay claims, Nigel Wright says
Live at Duffy trial: Former PMO staffer testifies for second day