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After weeks of being one of the most high profile Conservative Party critics of the Idle No More movement, Senator Patrick Brazeau has been kicked out of the party’s caucus.
The Canadian Press is reporting that a member of Brazeau’s staff was informed of this decision earlier today by the office of Senator Marjory LeBreton. There are also reports that Brazeau was taken into police custody following a call about domestic violence in Gatineau.
Yesterday, media reports alleged that Brazeau had for years used his father-in-law’s address in a First Nations community in order to claim a tax exemption.
Since the beginning of the surge in activism for Indigenous sovereignty and rights began late last year, Brazeau has been one of the most consistent and vocal critics of the Idle No More movement and defenders of the Conservative government’s record with respect to Indigenous people.
Earlier this week, rabble.ca published an open letter by novelist Eden Robinson to Prime Minister Harper. The letter opened with this:
“This is awkward, Stephen. But I think we both need to stop tiptoeing around the issue and just bring it up. When you pass legislation that basically assumes that all the band councils and chiefs in Canada are corrupt, entitled freeloaders, your most visible indigenous spokesperson about the pressing need for legal reform should probably not be Senator Patrick Brazeau. Points for irony, though.”
From the beginning of his term in the Senate, Brazeau has faced criticism and numerous allegations of corruption. In 2009, the Toronto Star reported, “The Prime Minister’s Office has steadfastly deflected criticism of Brazeau and the Senate vetting process that led to his appointment.”