Archived entries for Scott Brison

Congrats Scott and Max

scott_and_max_smallCongrats to Scott and Max, who tied the knot amid pouring rain yesterday in Nova Scotia, making Scott the first-ever Canadian Member of Parliament to marry a same-sex partner.

Frank McKenna, the former Ambassador to the U.S., was at the wedding and said, “I think everybody in the room felt like they were part of a history-making event. It seemed like a validation of a long process. I think everybody who was here was very moved by the experience.”

Scott and Max to wed next weekend

scott_maximeI have to give our BFF Scott Brison some credit. Two years ago the prominent gay Canadian politician announced he was getting engaged to his partner of six months, Maxime St. Pierre. At the time, I wrote in this very blog that “I’m not against starting a betting pool to wager how long this fairy tale engagement actually lasts.”

Well, I was wrong. Scott and his hunky boyfriend Maxime (shown here at the Calgary Stampede) — who looks remarkably like me — will finally tie the knot this coming Saturday in Nova Scotia. In doing so, he will become the first federal politician to take advantage of Canada’s recent legalization of marriage for same-sex couples.

Although my invitation to the Big Gay Wedding seems to have been lost in the mail, I wish Scott and Maxime a fabulous party. And if that invitation just happens to appear before the week is out, I’ll happily hop up to Halifax for what is sure to be the event of the summer for Ottawa insiders.
“>tie the knot this coming Saturday in Nova Scotia. In doing so, he will become the first federal politician to take advantage of Canada’s recent legalization of marriage for same-sex couples.

Although my invitation to the Big Gay Wedding seems to have been lost in the mail, I wish Scott and Maxime a fabulous party. And if that invitation just happens to appear before the week is out, I’ll happily hop up to Halifax for what is sure to be the event of the summer for Ottawa insiders.

Brison campaign faltering

seb_gayboys_for_brisonDespite my best efforts to promote the Scott Brison campaign on the streets of Vancouver and New York with my Gay Boys for Brison t-shirt, it doesn’t look the gay pol from Nova Scotia is going to be the next leader of Canada’s Liberal Party (and possibly, by extension, the next prime minister).

Controversial carpetbagger Michael Ignatieff, the long-time Boston resident who caused a furor when he claimed to also be a Toronto resident — at the same time — is now in the front of the pack.

Nine months ago the Boston Globe had this to say: “Ignatieff’s political future is far from assured. The 58-year-old has been labeled a carpetbagger by some for seeking office in a country where he has not lived for decades.” Few thought he would get this far.

This is the same Ignatieff whose resume had “Ottawa” misspelled in every reference until I pointed it out to his staff (thank you very much).

This weekend Liberal Party members have been selecting delegates to attend the party’s leadership convention (not unlike the U.S.’s Democratic National Convention) in Montreal in November. The delegates will pick the next party leader, and so far, the allegiance of delegates is leaning in Igantieff’s direction. While it appears Igatieff has the support of one-third of voters, our little Scotty has less than 6% supporting his bid. It’s too bad, because Scott really won us over when he told a consitutent to “kiss my ass.”

Vancouver’ safe injection sites

insiteMany people consider Vancouver a veritable sodom and gomorrah since it’s home to the continent’s first safe injection site. The storefront that is home to Insite in the city’s Downtown Eastside neighbourhood is a place where addicts can shoot up in a supervised and controlled environment.

It opened in 2003 on a three-year trial basis that will soon expire. Stephen Harper has said that he doesn’t want taxpayer money funneled to assist drug users in their addiction, so there is concern that as soon as he can, Harper will shutter the site. Insite has an average of 600 visitors per day.

This week two leading candidates for the Liberal Party leadership (that is, prime minister hopefuls) Ken Dryden and my BFF in Ottawa, Scott Brison, proclaimed that they want the sites to remain open and would welcome more of them across Canada.

Five days and counting

With only five days left until a new Canadian government is elected, one of the politicians some say is at little risk for losing his seat in Ottawa is openly gay Scott Brison. We don’t know who he’s running against, and frankly, we don’t care, because he’s young and fabulous, and like so few gay men, he can don a cowboy hat and still look suave while palming an Inukshuk at the Calgary Stampede, as in this photo.brison_calgary_0118

Brison defected to the Liberal Party a couple years ago, after making a failed bid to become leader of the Conservative Party. The Globe and Mail points out today that neither his being gay nor his party switch have cost him votes in the past but this year a new  challenge could come from the rising support for Conservatives in Nova Scotia, Brison’s home, and in the rest of the Maritime region in general.

2005 Hall of Fame and and Shame

None of these people really qualify for a Hall of Shame. It’s more like a Hall of Embarrassment, or Hall of Painful Obviousness, instead. In no particular order:

2005_shame

Christy Clark, for living in the ‘burbs while running for mayor of Vancouver and thinking she could get away with it. Called an opportunist, public backlash of her residency skirting ensued and so when she eventually she bought a place in the city, no one really believed her spokesman when he said, “she wanted to move into Vancouver no matter what.” In the end, it didn’t matter, because she lost.

Beverly Desjarlais, a member of parliament from northern Manitoba, was repaid by her Liberal Party constituents for her stance against same-sex marriage when they did not renominate her for the January 23 federal election. She has been forced to run as an independent.

Michael Ignatieff, for trying to run for federal office in Canada while living in Boston, repeatedly claiming he was a resident of Toronto, all the while telling the Harvard Crimson that if he loses the race, he wants to be back in Boston. And of course, I add him to this year’s Hall of Embarrassment for misspelling “Ottawa” in numerous places in his online curriculum vitae. The egregious error has since been corrected.

Ralph Klein, the chain-smoking premier of Alberta and former mayor of Calgary, for so relentlessly battling the encroachment of same-sex marriage into Texas North. Still, I give him credit for throwing his hands up in the air in June and declaring, “There are no legal weapons. There’s nothing left in the arsenal…We’re out on a lurch.”

Brian Mulroney, former prime minister of Canada, for being so uncouth when talking to the man who eventually wrote his biography. If you didn’t hate him when he ran the country, you do now. One columnist called the book a “tale of anger, betrayal and braggadocio so loud and lewd that ‘unguarded’ and ‘confession’ are an understatement.”

In some cases, my Hall of Fame might be better termed the Hall of People Pissing Others Off and Not Really Giving a Damn:

2005_fame

Gerald Tremblay, the dorky and sometimes flamboyant mayor of Montreal, for breaking royal protocol and giving Princess Margriet of the Netherlands a peck on the cheek when she visited the city in May. “I don’t know if she was amused, but I can tell you Her Highness was not upset,” her handlers told the press.

Scott Brison, the openly gay Cabinet minister from Nova Scotia, not for being an openly gay politician, but for so willingly admitting to the press that he is engaged to his boyfriend of only SIX MONTHS. But never mind. Scott, we still love you, and we look forward to invitation to the wedding, and the divorce proceedings.

Frank McKenna, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S. and former premier of New Brunswick, for telling the press mere days into his appointment that “the United States is a wonderful creation.” However, “the government of the United States is in large measure dysfunctional.” So much for being diplomatic.

Peter Jennings, for helping import dozens of Canadian journalists to the U.S. all the while infuriating those who believe Canadian reporters shouldn’t be delivering news about America to Americans. An ABC colleague told me, “In a television world that too often focuses on celebrity and tabloid tales and seems to prize the anchorman who yells the loudest, Peter refused to play along. He fought aggressively to keep international news on his newscast. He believed Americans needed to know what is going on in the world beyond their borders.”

Andre Boisclair, the openly gay and formerly drug-using leader of the Parti Quebecois, for giving me something to write about that appeals to American gay men otherwise uninterested in anything related to Canadian politics. A friend or two of his also deserve credit for feeding me gossip about him — which, I might add, I have not posted on the Internet.

Happy holidays from Ottawa

In what is surely the most clever holiday card floating around Ottawa this month, openly gay cabinet minister Scott Brison and fellow MP Ken Dryden are shown enjoying each other’s company on a playground slide at a children’s centre in Nova Scotia. The Ottawa Sun says, “It doesn’t look remotely close to a Christmas card, but Public Works Minister Scott Brison looks like he had fun posing for his seasonal greeting.”

scott_brison_card

Kiss this!

scott_brison_bumper_stickerOpenly gay cabinet minister Scott Brison has found himself in a bit of hot water after a longtime Liberal from his district told all about an encounter they had in a restaurant this fall. Sandra McGrath says the prime minister should fire Brison for once telling her to “kiss my ass.”

The ironic part about this is that Brison was reacting — however strongly and inappropriately — to the woman’s complaints about losing a patronage job with the government. Never mind that federal Liberals are under fire for funneling money and jobs to friends of the party, and an election campaign is underway because of it. Something just does not compute here.

So now Conservatives in Nova Scotia have proven they have a touch of humour by creating this clever bumper sticker just in time for the federal campaign.

Gay pol calls Canadian Conservative leader dinosaur

brison_1120Things are getting ugly in Canada now that the government is on the verge of collapse following threats by Conservatives to proceed with a no-confidence vote this week.

Scott Brison, the impeccably styled member of the prime minister’s cabinet best known for recently announcing his engagement to his boyfriend, took on Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper during a speech in Toronto last week, essentially calling him anti-gay, anti-bilingualism, anti-multiculturalism, and anti-publicly funded healthcare. Brison suggested that if Harper has his way, same-sex marriage legislation will be repealed in Canada during the next Conservative-led government. Bloggers are going nuts over his comments.

The Canadian Press called Brison’s comments a “harbinger of the mudslinging that could shape this winter’s expected federal election.”

Squeamish pundit says he’ll go to a gay wedding

BRISON SAME SEX MARRIAGEPundit Charles Adler says he doesn’t oppose gay marriage, but he does say that displays of gay affection “get this middle-aged Eastern European heart of mine to ask,’Do we really need to see this?’”

“The truth is we do need to see it,” he writes in theWinnipeg Free Press. “It’s easy taking intellectually defensible positions on a variety of issues. Once the consequences of those positions are in one’s face, one can squirm, cough, gag, or channel-surf. One is forced to confront reality.”

His latest column focuses on Scott Brison, the Canadian cabinet minister who is openly gay and who just days ago announced he is engaged. He says, “Scott, I will dance at your wedding if you choose to invite me.” What a challenge! My guess is that an invitation will find its way to Adler’s doorstep as soon as a date is set.

Adler writes, “Marriage is not a right, it’s an institution that is at the heart of family life. It’s about children, etc. But at some point in my life I chose to accept
the fact that Liberal cabinet minister Scott Brison puts on his pants the same
way I do. Why is it any of my business what stimulates his passions? That’s
private. And so, when he says that he is marrying a man and it is a private
matter, I think one ought to respect that, and not ask the hand of government
to mug him.”

“But what happens if Brison, or another gay person invites you to his wedding?
What do you do? My guess is most people reading the Winnipeg Free Press today have never been invited to a gay wedding and aren’t excited about the
possibilities. But if you are willing to say Yes to gay marriage, at some
point, do you not have to just suck up your discomfort and participate.”

Yes, he’s getting married

brison_1010My best friend in Toronto and I have had a good-natured competition running for the past year. We were trying to see which one of us could be the first to get engaged to Scott Brison, Canada’s first openly gay cabinet member. We worked parties in notoriously incestuous Ottawa, spent countless hours on the phone, and sent out frenzied BlackBerry’d messages to everyone and their mother trying to get a date with Brison, all to no avail.

This weekend, Brison, who is a member of parliament from Nova Scotia, announced he is getting married to his new boyfriend of six-months. It’s not to my friend Joe and it’s to not me. But I’m not against starting a betting pool to wager how long this fairy tale engagement actually lasts.

Over the weekend while he was waiting in vain for Martha Stewart to show in his hometown to row a giant pumpkin across a lake, Brison said, “I’m looking forward to the day when the idea of … a gay or lesbian politician getting married is not a story at all.” He also noted that prime minister Paul Martin told him soon after Canada legalized same-sex marriage that, “Well, after all I’ve been through on this Brison, you’d better get married.”



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