FEBRUARY 27, 2014 UPDATE (In response to my MP’s two page “explanation” why his party decided to impose FATCA on Canada):
“Dear Mr. Trottier,
Thank you for your February 19, 2014 letter in response to my February 6 promise that I have withdrawn my support for you (and for the Conservative Party) for your decision to help a foreign government impose FATCA on Canada.
Your two page letter of explanation only describes the many features of the U.S. FATCA law that are aimed at taking away my rights and, I’m sorry to say, provides insufficient justification for your position.
I was, however, particularly interested in your point that information (of all kinds–perhaps without any exception?) released by the banks to CRA, and then turned over without my permission to a foreign government “…is consistent with Canada’s privacy laws.”
A promise is a promise — and, now for the third time, I confirm that I will not be voting for you or for the Tory party in future because of your decision and I will tell all of my colleagues to do the same.
You know, I never really believed that this could ever happen in Canada.
FEBRUARY 6 2014 UPDATE (The DAY AFTER):
Dear Mr. Trottier [and …….],
“I am sorry to have to send this email, but it should not be a surprise to either of you that after yesterday’s decision of the Conservative government (including Mr. Trottier) to help the U.S. implement its FATCA law on Canadians, I have now withdrawn my support for Mr. Trottier and for the Conservative Party.
I have been a long-term supporter of the party but now will vote strategically in your riding to support, as strongly as I can, any candidate of the other parties (all, unlike the Tories, oppose FATCA) who has the best chance of defeating the Conservative.
Please note that there are at least one million other U.S. persons in Canada who are just as angry and who will not vote Conservative because of your decision to implement this bad law.
See also [deleted].
We won’t forget.
Jan 5 UPDATE on my meeting with my Canadian MP rep:
I had a nice chat this afternoon with my Canadian Conservative MP rep, Mr. Bernard Trottier. I introduced myself as the fellow who previously sent him a letter on FATCA and thanked him for actually responding and in a meaningful way.
He had no update on the state of the IGA negotiations between Minister Flaherty and the US, but will speak to him on this in about a week.
In a few minutes I summarized some of the consequences of FATCA for Canadians and mentioned again the IGA negotiations. His response was “But [as this is a “negotiation”] what does Canada get out of this?” and I responded appropriately.
Then I discussed votes: I explained that I voted for Mr. Trottier in the last election (this is true) and that should Minister Flaherty negotiate any IGA with the US, I will not vote for Mr. Trottier or the Conservative party again. Further, I emphasized that I am part of a network of one million (I used the term “unfortunate”) US persons in Canada, all just like me, and that my recommendation to my network will be the same. I noted too that this election is likely to be more difficult for the Tories to obtain a majority.
The discussion ended with Mr. Trottier saying that this evening he will be speaking to some US persons living in Canada, with one person considering taking out Canadian citizenship, and I provided advice on whether this was a good idea.
I left copies with Mr. Trottier and his secretary of Brison’s questions in Parliament to Flaherty, the (long) letter to the Canadian Bankers Association, some correspondence between me and a Canadian bank that uses a green logo, and a written statement in large bold print promising that I and my network will not vote Conservative should Flaherty negotiate any agreement that imposes FATCA on Canadians.
No idea whether the above will be helpful, but I was blunt enough (but polite) that my MP, who I felt was was very sympathetic throughout, understood the simple message.
Jan 5 UPDATE:
—Just another reminder that all Torontonians can visit with Conservative MP Bernard Trottier TODAY at 1-3 pm at 110 Jutland Rd. in Etobicoke. The occasion is his “Third Annual New Year’s Levee.”
I know that there was a slight snowfall last night, but freezing rain does not come until evening, the roads are clean and safe now, and driving this afternoon will be easy.
If you live in Toronto, feel that a chat with the party in power that wants to help the US impose FATCA on us might possibly be more helpful than just sending an email of complaint, why don’t you talk to Mr. Trottier today and also tell him how you plan to vote in the next Canadian election? I will.
Personally, I have become a single issue voter on both sides of the border.
Dec 20 UPDATE:
In October I received a letter from my Toronto MP, Bernard Trottier, stating that he will speak to Minister Flaherty again (i.e. a second time) to convey our concerns on FATCA (see below). This suggests to me that he, a member of the the Conservative government, might be sympathetic.
Mr. Trottier is having a public get-together Sunday January 5, 1-3 pm, at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch #210, 110 Jutland Road, in Etobicoke (suburb of Toronto). http://www.bernardtrottiermp.ca/events/
If you live in Toronto, instead of spending time on Sunday with your relatives, come and have a chat with the MP about FATCA.
Recently I emailed my Canadian Member of Parliament, Mr. Bernard Trottier, with a request to have a chat with Finance Minister Flaherty at the Calgary Conservative party convention, and to persuade Mr. Flaherty to resist US imposition of FATCA on Canada.
Mr. Trottier responded to my FATCA concern:
…I have the opportunity as an MP during Caucus and other sessions in Ottawa to discuss the FATCA issue with my colleagues, including Minister Flaherty. This issue has been raised by my constituents in the past in situations where the actions of the US Internal Revenue Service regarding Canadian-American dual citizens appeared to me to be heavy handed.
I will discuss with Minister Flaherty again to convey your concerns.
Our government does careful and due diligence prior to entering into any international agreement to ensure they will not violate the rights of Canadians, or the laws of Canada…
I know that I am trying to read too much into the letter, which can be interpreted in different ways, but the response first indicates that Mr. Trottier has previously spoken to Flaherty on FATCA.
Also, the letter from this member of government seems to be more strongly worded than those of Flaherty in terms of rights protection, by appearing to provide some “assurance” that careful due diligence will ensure that any IGA will [somehow] not violate our rights.
I have thanked Mr. Trottier for his response and have asked him to respond to the comments made on this posting (November 7, 2013).