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'Liar, liar, pants on fire': Monotone protesters interrupt Wynne scrum

Premier finished testifying at byelection bribery trial
wynne, kathleen

After spending a few hours on the witness stand in Sudbury today, Premier Kathleen Wynne's job in the Nickel City is, apparently, wrapped up.

The premier spent the morning and the early part of the afternoon being questioned first by Crown attorney Vern Brewer, and then by defence attornies Michael Lacy and Edward Greenspan.

The testimony contained no real surprises. 

Wynne described how Sudbury MPP Glenn Thibeault became a candidate in the 2015 Sudbury byelection, and how, according to her, the party wanted to soothe the hurt the Liberals' selection of the former NDP MP caused Andrew Olivier, the party's 2014 Sudbury candidate who lost the riding to NDPer Joe Cimino (and who stepped down not long after the election).

She reiterated that Thibeault was not offered a cabinet post for climbing aboard the provincial Liberal ship, and said the party's only intention in speaking with Olivier was to keep him "in the Liberal family."

After her testimony, the premier made a brief statement (less than a minute) outside the courthouse and didn't take any questions. 

As she walked to the mic and delivered her short statement, a handful of protesters in the background waved placards and signs, and chanted repeatedly in monotone, "Liar, liar, pants on fire."

Wynne ignored the protesters and told reporters her goal in testifying was to show a willingness to be open.

"I just wanted to say that I wanted to be here to be as open as possible," Wynne said. "I've said everything I've had to say in the courtroom today and now I have a lot to do ... so thank you all for being here."

"You're open but you won't take questions? Why? That's not very open," one reporter called out.

"I've said everything I've had to say in the courtroom," Wynne answered, before walking away.

Testimony continues this afternoon with André Bisson, who was vice-president of the Sudbury Liberal riding association board at the time of the byelection.