Name that party

The Ottawa Citizen has reported on today's resignation of Senator Raymond Lavigne, who finally quit after being convicted of fraud and breach of trust. In light of the feeding frenzy going on in parliamentary committees right now over the government's alleged "contempt of Parliament", it seems odd that nowhere in the Citizen's nine paragraph story does reporter Althia Raj see fit to mention the Senator's party affiliation.

For the record, Senator Lavigne is a Liberal. He was elected as MP for the Quebec riding of Verdun-St Paul in 1993 and again in 1997 and 2000. He was appointed to the Senate by Liberal Prime Minister Jean Chretien in 2002 to allow former Quebec cabinet minister Liza Frulla to run in his riding for the federal Liberals.

The Citizen does report that "Lavigne, 65, has come under fire for spending $315,355 in travel expenses, on top of his $132,300 salary, despite being barred from doing any work in the Senate or its committees". This is serious unethical behaviour, and it seems to me that people might be curious about how it reflects on the Liberal Party which he represented for years in both the House and the Senate, and indeed the judgment of the Liberal Prime Minister who appointed him to the upper chamber.

The opposition parties, led by the odious Pat Martin, are worked into a lather over the Bev Oda affair and the Government's crime bill. In both cases, the Citizen didn't hesitate to identify the political party involved. Reporting on the crime bill, the Citizen mentioned not only the Conservative Party but also its leader:
The release of hundreds of pages of federal documents on Wednesday has sparked new warnings from opposition parties that they are losing confidence in Stephen Harper's minority government for not sharing enough details about the price of its agenda.

Facing accusations of contempt of Parliament, the Tory government released the thick binder of notes that reveal over $600 million in new spending estimates associated with its heavy law-and-order agenda.
On the Bev Oda issue, the Citizen reports:
Federal politicians have approved a plan to draft a report finding the minority Conservative government in contempt of Parliament, setting the stage for a confidence motion that could provoke an election.
Let's call together a parliamentary committee and put Michael Ignatieff on the hot seat. He's the leader of the Liberal Party; what did he know about l'affaire Lavigne, and when did he know it? Contempt of parliament indeed.

And while we're at it, let's get Althia Raj to testify why she doesn't think it's important that readers know that Raymond Lavigne is a Liberal.