Liberals will hope Tuesday’s budget deflects from SNC-Lavalin scandal

Parliament is back after March Break, but it feels more like Groundhog Day.

Monday morning, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau shuffled his cabinet for the third time in as many months, to replace Jane Philpott at Treasury Board after she quit in solidarity with her colleague, former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould. On the same morning, the Hill Times reported that Trudeau will be consulting MPs, former Parliamentarians and academics about changes to his caucus and cabinet management style.

And the Conservatives are howling about the government cancellation of their Opposition Day motion, which called on Trudeau to waive all privilege and cabinet confidences and let Wilson-Raybould speak her full truth.

In other words, the SNC-Lavalin scandal is still in full swing. And it’s not clear what, if anything, will make it go away.

Well, maybe there is one thing: the federal budget. Finance Minister Bill Morneau will present it Tuesday afternoon, and the Liberals are hoping for a channel-changer. It’s the last budget before the October election and the last chance for the government to bribe voters with their own money.

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