NAFTA-Gate Shocker: Did Hillary's Camp Lie and Frame Obama?
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Just when I thought I'd gotten a handle on the so-called "NAFTA-gate" story, it takes an unexpected turn.
Some Canadian news outlets reported last week that Barack Obama's campaign had reached out to Canadian officials, telling them to effectively ignore Obama's concerns about NAFTA, claiming the rhetoric was just political posturing. Those reports turned out to be false. Canadian news also noted that Obama aides had contacted the Canadian ambassador with the same message. That turned out to be false, too. Both Hillary Clinton and John McCain read almost identical talking points, but much of the accusations proved to be unfounded. Nevertheless, given the attention and scrutiny, the largely controversy had a fairly significant impact in Tuesday's primaries.
Now, a new report out of Toronto suggests the original story may have left out some important details.
If the Prime Minister is seeking the first link in the chain of events that has rocked the U.S. presidential race, he need look no further than his chief of staff, Ian Brodie, The Canadian Press has learned.
A candid comment to journalists from CTV News by Prime Minister Stephen Harper's most senior political staffer during the hurly-burly of a budget lock-up provided the initial spark in what the American media are now calling NAFTAgate.
Mr. Harper announced Wednesday that he has asked an internal security team to begin finding the source of a document leak that he characterized as being "blatantly unfair" to Senator Barack Obama.
OK, so the chief of staff of Canada's conservative Prime Minister decided he wanted to meddle in the Democratic Party's primary process. Clearly, that's wildly inappropriate.
But the odd twist is that it may have been Clinton who reassured Canadians about NAFTA.
From the Globe and Mail:
Steve Benen is a freelance writer/researcher and creator of The Carpetbagger Report. In addition, he is the lead editor of Salon.com's Blog Report, and has been a contributor to Talking Points Memo, Washington Monthly, Crooks & Liars, The American Prospect, and the Guardian.