By Jorge Barrera and Kenneth Jackson
APTN National News
When Tom Flanagan, a former advisor to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, wrote his book about the Conservative’s rise to power, he never mentioned Bruce Carson, and the omission left a lasting sore spot.
It nearly ruined Christmas.
Carson’s youngest daughter gave her father Flanagan’s book, Harper’s Team, but she didn’t expect his reaction.
“The terrible thing is that my youngest daughter, who is now 22, bought it to me for Christmas two years ago because she thought it would be the best book you could ever buy your dad,” said Carson. “The reaction she got wasn’t what she expected.”
Carson said he didn’t think Flanagan liked him.
“He doesn’t like me,” said Carson. “I am the only guy not mentioned in the Harper team book.”
Carson opened up to APTN about the inner workings of Ottawa during a wide ranging interview that was part of an investigation into his activities around an Ottawa-based water company.
Carson spoke about several influential journalists and some of the people at the centre of power in Ottawa.
Carson is currently facing an RCMP investigation, along with probes from the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commission and the Commissioner of Lobbying as a result of APTN’s investigation.
The Prime Minister’s Office called in the police after a meeting with APTN reporters.
Carson admitted on camera to lobbying for an Ottawa-based water company that had signed a contract with his 22-year-old escort fiancee guaranteeing her 20 per cent of gross sales from water contracts in First Nations communities.
Despite his current troubles, Flanagan said in an email to APTN that he always respected Carson and should have included him in his book.
“I always liked Bruce and admired his expertise,” wrote Flanagan. “I didn’t deliberately leave him out of Harper’s Team. It’s just that he came on board after I was already less engaged. He worked mainly on legislation not campaigning, so I didn’t see his contribution on a day to day basis.”
Flanagan said he just didn’t work much with Carson.
“I’m sorry his feelings were hurt, and with benefit of hindsight, I can see that I should have given him a mention in the book. But there was no dislike on my part,” wrote Flanagan.
Carson and Flanagan both worked at the University of Calgary. Carson has since temporarily stepped down from the Canada School of Energy and Environment, which is based out of the university. Flanagan is a professor at the university.