Dexter defends the indefensible

Since Darrell Dexter has not yet decided to fire his Minister of Community Services, he is stuck having to defend her, and defending Denise Peterson-Rafuse these days requires saying some pretty silly things.

That’s just what Dexter did yesterday when he claimed Peterson-Rafuse was doing an “excellent job,” adding, “The only people to release private information in this House are the members of the Conservative caucus.”

The tortured logic behind this argument, which Peterson-Rafuse has also used in her own defence, is that because the DCS report on Talbot House didn’t use Fr. Paul Abbass’s name, but only his job title, it didn’t actually identify him. But anyone who connects the very obvious dots and demands Peterson-Rafuse’s resignation for trading in false allegations is guilty of defaming the falsely accuse priest.

Is it really necessary to explain why this is a stupid argument? Let’s use an analogy:

Citizen Smith: I hear the premier of Nova Scotia has committed serious sexual improprieties in the course of his work.

Citizen Jones: That’s an outrageous thing to say about Darrell Dexter, especially after the police have cleared him of that false allegation.

Citizen Smith: Dexter? Dexter? You’re the only one who said anything about Darrell Dexter. You’re the one who’s guilty of defamation.

The premier and his inner circle are hoping the Talbot House story will go away, and as they wait for that hope to play out, they are willing to let a minister and her department get away with a campaign of character assassination.