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Chretien Goes Before Gomery
Ending his day of testimony before the Gomery Inquiry, former prime minister Jean Chretien pulled out some props to defend his reputation -- a collection of customized golf balls given to him by U.S. presidents and other world leaders.

The inquiry's Justice John Gomery drew the ire of Chretien when he told a newspaper in December that golf balls with Chretien's initials, which cost the sponsorship program $1,200, were "small-town cheap."

Chretien pulled out of his briefcase similar initialized golf balls he had received from U.S. President George W. Bush, former president Bill Clinton (both with presidential seals), and the former president of the Philippines.

For his grande finale, he showed off a golf ball with the insignia of Ogilvy Renault -- the Montreal law firm that counts among its partners inquiry chief counsel Bernard Roy, former prime minister Brian Mulroney, and Gomery's daughter.

"Ogilvie Renault, you know, Mr. Roy and Mr. Mulroney and Madame Gomery are all members of that firm," Chretien quipped. "You cannot call them small town. And to call them Westmount cheap, it would be an oxymoron."

Gomery adjourned the hearing as soon as the golf ball display wrapped up, saying it would reconvene Thursday. Source.

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Wednesday February 9, 2005