Liberals & NDP back to Work – Where art Stephen Harper & the Conservatives? by Markus Noé – January 26, 2010

Liberals and NDP at Work

Cornwall Ontario – Both the Liberal’s and NDP’s have followed through on their promise to continue working despite Parliament being prorogued. Michael Ignatieff and Jack Layton held press conferences today in front of the locked doors of Parliament while surrounded by their team of MP’s.

The two frustrated leader’s main topic was to find ways to limit Prime Ministers Stephen Harper’s power to prorogue Parliament. Ignatieff rhymed off a list of restrictions that he believes should be implemented. These include having a 10 day notice before prorogation can occur; prorogation cannot happen when there is a vote of confidence on the table, and that the idea of prorogation should be submitted to the House of Commons and be put to a vote. “We need clear rules to limit prorogation,” said Ignatieff.

In this morning media scrum Ignatieff was reminded that last week he supported the PM’s right to Prorogue, and then was asked what has changed his mind. His response was to quote a philosopher who once said, “rules are for people with no character”. Ignatieff explained this quote when he said, “we are dealing with a Prime Minister who has shown he doesn’t have the political character to respect our institution. So a change in the rules needs to be made.”

Layton expressed his frustration with the prorogation of Parliament when he said, “we are being denied the right to take our seats, this is not very Canadian.” Towards the end of his statement to the media today Layton lashed out at Harper when he said, “unlock the doors so we can consider our future role in the war in Afghanistan. Unlock the doors so we can begin debate on the upcoming budget. Unlock the doors and show the people of Canada that you respect the democratic tradition of this country.” Layton ended by inviting the other parties to consider his proposal to establish legislative limits to prorogue Parliament.

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  1. I remember watching that on the news yesterday. Saw a little clip too where apparently some conservative MPs are still hard at work. Showed a bunch of faces, Peter McKay included. Didn’t see Lauzon’s there though. Not surprised.

    What about our bridge Guy? Whats going on with that?

    What about our voice? Why is it our elected MP will not listen to his constituents, and why won’t he talk to his constituents? It makes no sense and I find it says a lot about Guy’s character when he hides like that. But he’s simply towing the party line, like commander Harper ordered.

  2. Markus, you forgot to mention one party’s comments. The BLOC Quebecois’ (Gilles Duceppe) stated that his understanding of efforts by the Opposition parties to IMPEDE the Prime Ministers right to prorogue the parliament IS UNCONSTITUTIONAL !!!
    Who would have thought Canadians would need to learn Constitutional lessons from Quebec!

  3. Of course Duceppe would say that. After all it is to the BLOC’s benefit when there is no federal government sitting. This means that Quebec is in control of their own destiny without any outside interference.

  4. Yes, this coming from the Federal BLOC party (should be provincial), that alongside the Conservatives and Guy Lauzon, voted in the HST on us!

  5. The BLOC is allowed to comment on the constitutution and they often make a lot more sense than Harper does on the subject. They got elected the same way that Lauzon and everyone else got elected. The BLOC are definitely separatists (and I don’t support them) but they are not going against the constitution. They are representing the people who elected them. In Canada, every vote is equal. If you don’t agree, then whose vote is not equal?

  6. Author

    Joe are you 100% sure that the Bloc are Separatists? I mean, they clearly are pro Quebec, but I haven’t heard too much of the usual rhetoric from them. In fact if Mr. Duceppe were either a Liberal or a Conservative I have a hunch he’d be Prime Minister.

  7. They are representing the people of Quebec whom elected them. I would just have more respect for them if they actually ran Federally rather than provincially but with a Federal party status. That is what doesn’t make sense to me. I am not for the separatists either. The BLOC is at least much more watered down than the PQ (whom were mostly the separatists). And I do have to say that I give Gilles Duceppe credit, at least he tells it like it is. Not like the others out there. At least you know exactly what Gilles is thinking. Now there’s an honorable statesman.

    I agree with Joe, that te BLOC makes more sense about the constitution than Harper does!

    Otherwise regardless of which party, they all need to get back to work in Parliament for the people that elected them into power!

  8. Of course you will cast your minds back to the time where the Liberals, NDP and the BLOC were going to be a “coalition” together and run the country. Or have we conveniently forgotten? That was Harper’s first proroguation……bringing us back to our senses! You can argue that one till thecows come home!

    Joe, you’ve got it right! Admin, you speak the truth. I think that Duceppe would be a great Prime Minister if only he could get away from the BLOC’ ideas.

    Grimalot, they are all working…..whether or not they are physically in the parliament buildings.

  9. Well said Jamie regarding Duceppe. Having been raised in Quebec, and yet being English, I always felt sort of torn between worlds, but that being said, Quebec has always had some brilliant and charismatic political talent, who were never lazy, cowardly or afraid to defends their citizen’s interests. They appreciated and respected being an “ELECTED” official and took that responsibility very seriously.


  10. Boy Canadian politics must really be going down the crapper when the BLOC start looking like the good guys!

  11. Well Dawn, Quebec politicians were never “lazy, cowardly or afraid to defend their citizen’s interests”…
    No indeed. Nor were they ever afraid to defend their own interests either.
    Let’s see:
    Pierre Trudeau, Brian Mulrony, Paul Martin, Jean Chretien
    Jean Drapeau, the current Montreal City Council
    Rene Levesque, Robert Bourassa, Maurice Duplessis, Jacques Parizeau, and the list goes on.
    No, it seems to me they defended their own interests very well, took their responsibilities very seriously, and put themselves and their cronies well ahead of other Quebecers, English and French, and other Canadians in general.

  12. To Layton: the doors are unlocked, get to work — the Conservative MPs have been at work for the last 3 weeks

    To Iffy: go back to your vacation at the family villa in the south of France, you prefer being outside Canada

    To the author: clearly, the Prime Minister and his Cabinet and MPs have been hard at work in Canada (Haiti efforts), Poland (Auschwitz 65th anniversary of liberation), Switzerland (Davos economic forum), etc. etc. while the whining Libs and NDP have been on vacation except for demonstrations and press conferences… Let’s see how they vote on the Budget to be introduced on March 4th and which Finance Minister Flaherty has been consulting Canadians about since December.

    To fellow postersL when the Bloc looks good it does show how bad the Libs and NDP are — say what you want, but the Bloc members have honour…

  13. Stan said “Grimalot, they are all working…..whether or not they are physically in the parliament buildings.”

    Yes I see this now. Considering that yesterday I got my latest blast of propaganda from Lauzon’s office telling me how Canadians are starting to cozy up to the government.

    I had to reply, what government? And I kindly advised to please be in office (parliament – while in session) before sending me any more of his propaganda.

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