“Most of the decisions you have to make in this job are hard ones.
“But the toughest decisions I have to make, day in and day out, are the lines for the lackeys’ appearances at Question Period and on Power and Politics.
“Personally, I’d rather the lackeys appeared exclusively on 24 Seven, my very own taxpayer-funded, on-line political channel where I tell it the way I want, not Evan Solomon’s way (not that I have to worry about him anymore). But for political reasons I have to let them talk to the ‘lame-stream’ media occasionally.
“Problem is I just can’t trust them to stay on message. That’s why I have to write down the words so they can memorize them in advance. “Peter Poilievre is particularly good at reciting my nice little sound bites, at least a hundred times a day. Remember ‘Terrorism is the root cause of terrorism’?
Or ‘Nigel Wright is protecting Canadian taxpayers by generously paying Duffy’s expenses.’ Of course, that’s before all hell broke loose and I had to distance myself from Nigel and eventually throw him under the bus.
“Chris Alexander ably and fiercely toes the line, never diverging from his assigned talking points. Yes, there was that one time when he spun off on his own saying the hijab, niqab, and burqa are all used interchangeably, but, honestly (yes, sometimes I am), why did everyone get their knickers in such a twist?
“Kelly Leitch, being a doctor, memorizes her lines perfectly and is excellent at doggedly sticking to them, no matter how many times Rosie Barton pushes her for a different answer.
“Jason Kenney is not so good. He wants my job so he shows off by tweeting his own spin. But look what happens when he tweets indiscriminately. Remember he tweeted that Cpl Cirillo had been killed and the mayhem that caused. But to tell you the truth (I do that sometimes), I don’t mind his misfired tweets because they make him look bad and that’s good for me.
“It’s the same thing for the backbenchers. I have a political strategy and I’m not going to let a bunch of yahoos from the 905 and Alberta interfere with it. That’s why I have to feed them questions and answers for Question Period. Otherwise, they try to bring up their own issues that don’t fit into my game plan.
“So, late at night when I shut off the lights, I know I can sleep peacefully, secure in the knowledge that everyone has their lines for the next day.”