Pols 3440 Short Essay – Brian Mulroney and Karlheinz Schreiber
Short Essay #1POLS*3440Brian Mulroney and Karlheinz SchreiberBrandon Storey 0832487February 5th 2016During Brian Mulroney’s tenure as the Prime Minister of Canada between 1984 and 1993, Mulroney and the Government of Canada had established a controversial relationship with different lobbyists trying to develop a contract to purchase a large number of Airbus jets. Brian Mulroney and Karlheinz Schreiber had already been well acquainted since Schreiber’s arrival into Canada. In 1982 Schreiber and former Newfoundland Premier Frank Moores began a business partnership where money was raised to support Mulroney’s political “ambitions”. (canada.com, 2007) In 1983 Schreiber was found paying delegates to vote against Joe Clark at the Progressive Conservative leadership convention in Winnipeg. Mulroney evidently became the PC leader shortly after. (2007) Fast forward to March 1988 where Boeing and Airbus had been competing diligently to secure a contract with Air Canada, the at the time crown corporation in commercial air travel in Canada. Airbus won the deal and Boeing was forced to sell land they had bought to increase leverage for a deal. (Brennan, 2010) With an order of 34 Airbus A320’s as well as the sale of the existing Boeing 747 fleet, allegations began to circulate of a possible influence to the Government of Canada’s decisions. (CBC, 2009)
June 23rd 1993, Schreiber decides to visit Brian Mulroney in his diminishing days left in office at the prime minister’s official residence in Harrington Lake, Quebec. The Ontario Supreme Court filed an affidavit where Karlheinz Schreiber alleged that it was during this specific meeting with Mr. Mulroney where the agreement would be made that would see Schreiber pay Mulroney $300,000 for his support in “certain services”. (2007) Throughout the year, Schreiber would transfer large funds between Swiss bank accounts summing to totals around $500,000. Over the course of the next two years, Schreiber would meet Mulroney three separate times; handing Mulroney closed envelopes containing $100,000 of cold hard cash each time. By 1995, the RCMP launched a criminal investigation into the $1.8 billion Airbus sale. (Globe and Mail, 2010)In a defensive position, Mulroney threatened to sue the Federal Government for tarnishing his reputation after ‘The Financial Post’ published an exposé piece on the RCMP’s involvement with Swiss authorities investigating Schreiber’s transactions and holdings. (2007) Mulroney testified to meeting with Schreiber “once or twice” simply for a cup of coffee. Did Mulroney know of the reputation with tax evasion Schreiber had? Would the Government still have given Mulroney the $2.1 million dollar settlement had they known of their relationship?