MP Guy Lauzon comments on Prorogation – Cornwall Ontario – January 13, 2010

LAUZON – Prorogation: What and Why

“There has been a lot of discussion about our government’s decision to prorogue the current session of Parliament.

Prorogation is a Parliamentary procedure that is part of the House of Commons’ rules that allows the government of the day to end the current session and to restart Parliament with a new Speech from the Throne setting a new agenda for Parliament. This process or option has been used over 100 times since Confederation. Prorogation has been used 14 times in the past 20 years. The current government has exercised the option to prorogue twice.

The first time our government prorogued Parliament was to prevent the three opposition parties from forming a coalition government which would have essentially given the power to veto all Government of Canada legislation to the Bloc Quebecois.

Our government is now proroguing this session of Parliament in order to refresh the government’s agenda with a new Speech from the Throne to address the challenges ahead in the next 12 months. It should be noted that most sessions of Parliament last approximately 12 months on average.

Our government is the envy of nations around the world for the proactive way we dealt with the global recession as a result of our Economic Action Plan. In order to maintain our leadership role we feel it is necessary to develop a proactive agenda and a budget that will continue our recovery over the next 12 months and lay the groundwork for addressing the deficit we incurred in the past year. These actions require a different plan than the current agenda that dealt with a huge infusion of stimulus into the economy.

It also should be noted that proroguing Parliament does not affect private members legislation on the order paper. In many cases all parties agree to continue legislation that was on the order paper in the previous session. This is subject to the oppositions’ concurrence.

I hope this helps to clarify some of misconceptions on this important issue.”

What do you think Cornwall?  Post your comments below.

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  1. The prorogation a year ago was due to the fact that the Conservatives had lost the confidence of a legitimately elected House of Commons and so Harper shut it down. Lauzon seems to be saying that some voters in Quebec don’t count as much as others. Which ones in SD&SG don’t count as much? This time Harper was stressed and bothered by democracy and so Harper shut it down. Harper has a minority government but wants to act like he has a majority. It will be time to shut Harper down in the next election. .

  2. Sorry, Mr Lauzon, Canadians aren’t buying your explanation. Why? Because on the key issues of trust and accountability, your government has turned out to be a miserable failure. Take your government’s habit of shutting down debate on troublesome issues, and shouting down, bullying or otherwise smearing public servants whose views you don’t like. That’s not governing; that’s railroading. “Our government is the envy of nations,” you claim, failing to add thanks largely to the legacy of a previous government. When your party formed the government, it inherited a substantial surplus. Instead of preserving this surplus as a cushion againts the recession, you threw it away on tax cuts and a spending fest, so that now we are in deficit and ballooning debt that will affect our children and their children. Canadians want a government that’s honest and open and accountable…all the things you promised to deliver and turn out to have no interest in. Frankly, Mr. Lauzon, Canadians are ashamed of your government…and are in increasing thousands seeing your leader’s prorogation for what it is: cowardly, self-interested and anti-democratic, and nothing to do with the good of the country. You, your leader, and your party have a lot to answer for.

  3. I’m not ashamed of the government! I wasn’t ashamed of the government when they prorogued the parliament the first time protecting the country from being run by the likes of the BLOC Quebecois!
    You will note that when they came back, the coalition had fallen apart! Thank you Mr.Harper! You surely saved the day.

  4. Author

    Actually Stan when the government came back there was a new leader for the Liberal Party who chose not to go that route. He chose to allow the Harper government to destroy the economy further and have the opportunity to prorogue for a second time.
    Something I think a lot of Canadians will in fact remember next election time.

  5. Yes I see your point. Parliament has been prorogued by the Liberals many more times than the Conservatives…..will we remember that too next electon time? Or are we just being selective?

  6. Author

    Stan could you please link to a time Parliament was prorogued by any PM who had over 30 bills on the table? Don’t insult Canadians please. I think everyone knows why Mr. Harper prorogued both times and both come under the classification of stuff that comes out of the back end of a fowl…

  7. Get back to work Guy. Yet again on the defensive with your propaganda delivered to you straight from the PMO. Otherwise as for the rest of what I have to say, Joe and PJR pretty well summed it up. Your Conservative government as is is dangerous to Canada and Canadians alike. The only reason you prorogued government is because of the Afghan detainee issue as well as not getting your ways in the house. So in his (Harper’s) little temper tantrum, the senate will be stacked, and before it gets abolished in any way, I know for a fact that Harper will push his agenda through. The hidden agenda he keeps trying to deflect any questions on.

    The reason changes were made to your anti crime legislation is because some of it is extremely vague and some of it extremely regressive as well. Not that I am not for more anti-crime legislation but your government is going too far with some of it. This is why you have a “MINORITY” government, because NO ONE wants to give you guys ultimate power to do what you want right now. Because it is a trust issue, and people just don’t trust your government enough. And your government is proving those people right. And so they are doing what they can to stack the senate and get their way rather than do their jobs for the people that put you into power in the first place. YOUR CONSTITUENTS! The ones you voted against, with the PMO’s instruction every time, instead of what your Constituents want. Such as the HST for example. I’m sure your constituents wanted you to vote yes to allow that to happen.

    Again, nice try with your smoke and mirrors. I only hope this issue leads to the downfall of Harper and yourself ultimately, for the sake of us constituents and the rest of Canada/Canadians. Enjoy your ill gotten, golden handshake when the time comes. Shame, but all this time that government is prorogued, should be added to your eligibility for your pension. Same for the rest of government.

    And on top of it all, you still don’t have the bridge issue fixed, nor will you even need to attempt to do anything about it until the parliament is back in. The only national security issue going on that I can see is the Conservatives trying to cover up their own bungling in these, and other matters.

    Again, GET BACK TO WORK!

  8. PS for Mr. Lauzon (and Stan): “When a government starts trying to cancel dissent or avoid dissent is frankly when it’s rapidly losing its moral authority to govern” (Stephen Harper 2005). Now match M. Harper’s words to his actions since 2006.

  9. Frankly, I don’t mind that Parliament is prorogued for awhile. The institution is operating much more efficiently now, in the sense that less time is wasted on irrelevancies and nonsense. The only thing that really bothers me is that when any other group decide to withhold work or service for an extended perod, all pay and benefits stop. Mr Lauzon, how about it?

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