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A Government MP Took Out A Billboard To Brag About Spending Public Money

A New Brunswick MP really wants voters to know he got them $5.2 million.

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Saint John MP Rodney Weston did what any politician would do when a new YMCA was built in his riding. He grabbed a shovel and smiled for the cameras.

Government of New Brunswick

The Atlantic Canada Opportunity kicked in 5.2 million towards the new Y. The province threw in $4.3 million and the YMCA of Greater Saint John footed the remaining $11.7 million. They broke ground in March 2014.

Then Weston took it a step further. He paid for a large billboard next to a busy Saint John roadway to boast that he is personally responsible for the federal cash.

Usually politicians are a bit more reserved about this sort of thing. After all, in principle these spending decisions are made by bureaucrats and based on merit (even though everyone knows politics has always been involved in practice.)

But it's another, ahem, sign of Canada's current age of brazenness when it comes to spending public money.

In the past week we've also seen Employment Minister Pierre Poilievre announcing government cheques while wearing Conservative swag. And Science and Technology Minister Ed Holder use a funding announcement to promote a local MP.

Hey, Ethics Commissioner @CIEC_CCIE - should a Minister of the Crown be wearing a party logo at a govt announcement?

Have you seen something similar from your local MP? If so, email

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Paul McLeod is a politics reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC.

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