VANCOUVER—Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott are set to reveal their next moves Monday.
The former Liberal cabinet ministers, both of whom resigned over the SNC-Lavalin controversy, have scheduled announcements about their political futures in their respective ridings. Neither has said what they have in mind.
Wilson-Raybould, the former attorney general, is now an independent MP for the B.C. riding of Vancouver-Granville. She’s been at the heart of the SNC-Lavalin affair, alleging she was subjected late last year to sustained “inappropriate” political pressure by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his officials to coax her to intervene in the criminal prosecution of the Quebec engineering giant.
She was shuffled to the portfolio of veterans affairs in January and later revealed she thought the decision to move her out of the justice role was motivated by her handling of a request to intervene in the case.
Philpott is the independent MP for the Ontario riding of Markham-Stouffville. The former health minister, Indigenous services minister and president of the Treasury Board resigned from cabinet in early March over Trudeau’s handling of SNC-Lavalin.
Both politicians were ousted from the Liberal caucus in April with Trudeau saying their lack of confidence in his leadership and the party made it impossible for them to remain. The expulsions came despite a last-minute appeal from Wilson-Raybould. In a letter distributed the day before, she offered a mild endorsement of the prime minister and challenged Liberals on whether they want a party that prizes partisan advantage over inclusiveness.
There’s been feverish speculation over Wilson-Raybould’s political future. Both the NDP and the Greens have publicly courted her candidacy.
The SNC scandal has also deeply hurt the governing party in the polls, which suggests if an election happened today there would be a Conservative prime minister.
With files from The Canadian Press.
Melanie Green is a Vancouver-based reporter covering food, culture and policy. Follow her on Twitter: @mdgmedia