December 9, 2010: Bev Oda says she didn’t know who put the “NOT” in the KAIROS memo. And she didn’t know if she personally signed it, or if her signature had been machine-added after the “NOT” had been inserted.
December 22, 2010: Oda says she signed the document, and at that point there wasn’t a “NOT” in it. As Canadian Cynic pointed out to me b/c, that meant she had actually approved funding for KAIROS.
February 14, 2011: “The ‘not’ was inserted at my direction.”
A couple of observations.
First, she may not have been technically lying, if you parse her words carefully, although she has clearly been lying by implication from the get-go.
She ordered the “NOT” inserted, but probably didn’t know the name of the munchkin who actually did it.
She signed the document, either personally or using a machined signature block. But if the latter, the lag time in a Minister’s office might have delayed the addition of her signature until after she had ordered up the “NOT.”
She may indeed have signed off on the actual funding recommendation, putting the document in her “sign” pile to be run through the signature machine. Then (my guess) she was told “nothing doing” by the PMO.
Being NOT very bright and NOT very competent, she ordered the word “NOT” inserted into the document, thinking that would fix everything.
Then the spotlight was turned on. Ever since, in her spectacularly inept way, she has been trying to fall on her sword to cover for the PMO, with story after inconsistent story. Jason Kenney did his level best to help her. But the point was blunt, the edge dull—until today.
She will resign. But let’s hope that the Foreign Affairs Committee doesn’t choose to leave matters thus. The timeline here—especially when the “NOT” was actually added and when the document was actually signed—would prove fascinating. And Canadians have a right to know.
ADDENDUM: I neglected to add Oda’s most comedic line to date: that she had had the word “NOT” inserted because “Given the way the document was formatted, allowing only for concurrence, this was the only way to reflect my decision.”
Having spent a few years of my life in an office, I might have suggested that the Minister simply not sign off on the thing, and issue a decision letter of her own. But maybe they do things differently on the Hill.