OTTAWA – Two Liberal MPs have been kicked out of their party’s caucus amid accusations of personal misconduct made by two female members of the NDP.
A source familiar with the matter identified the former Liberals as Quebec MP Massimo Pacetti and Scott Andrews, the member for Avalon in Newfoundland and Labrador and the party’s ethics critic.
Liberal whip Judy Foote wrote to Commons Speaker Andrew Scheer today to say she has looked into the allegations and that the two former Liberals are denying the claims.
Valerie Dufour, the NDP’s deputy director of strategic communications, confirmed that the complainants are New Democrats.
Foote said she discussed the matter with the two women on Oct. 30, but her letter did not provide details of the allegations.
Andrews, 39, was first elected as in 2008 and re-elected in 2011. As an MP, he has served on a number of committees, including fisheries, veterans affairs and natural resources.
He most recently served as the Liberal critic for access to information, privacy and ethics.
Pacetti, 52, is a veteran MP who was first elected to the Commons in a byelection in May 2002 in the Montreal riding of Saint-Leonard-Saint-Michel. He was re-elected in 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2011.
He has served on a number of Commons committees in his career, including a stint as chairman of the finance committee. Within the caucus, he was critic for amateur sport and small business and Quebec caucus chairman.
Foote said there is a process for handling allegations of workplace misconduct involving employees, but she knows of no precedent for dealing with complaints among MPs.
“I believe a process that continues to deal with these allegations in a serious manner will require the involvement of a neutral third party trusted by all concerned,” Foote wrote in her letter.
She asked Scheer to establish a process for dealing with such cases in the future.