Saturday, August 30, 2008

So, Steve Wants an Election...

When parliament broke for the summer, there was speculation about when the Cons might start the fall session or if they would at all since they'd basically run out of agenda items. Since that time, Harper has done everything possible to try to convince Canadians that parliament is "dysfunctional", despite the passage of numerous bills with the help of the other parties.

Flashback to 2006: Harper promises law to set election date every four years

"Fixed election dates prevent governments from calling snap elections for short-term political advantage," Harper said. "They level the playing field for all parties and the rules are clear for everybody."

Because the government could be defeated in the Commons before the end of a four-year term, "the will of a majority in Parliament will always prevail," he said.

"But fixed election dates stop leaders from trying to manipulate the calendar simply for partisan political advantage."

That bill eventually became law and the scheduled date for the next election is supposed to be Oct. 19, 2009.

Stephen Harper has proven he's just another political opportunist (not that that's news) by threatening, once again, to send the public to the polls this fall while he's holding meetings with Layton and Duceppe in a lame attempt to prove that the parties can't work together. Well, cry me a river and lie to me one more time, Steve.

After talks with Harper on Friday, Duceppe said the Conservative minority could continue to work with various opposition parties to pass legislation, as it has over the last two years, but that Harper "absolutely" wants to call a snap election.

"Instead of making efforts to try finding solutions in the best interest of the population, he wants an election in the best interest of his party," Duceppe said.

Later in the day, senior officials in the Prime Minister's Office said it's probable Harper will seek to dissolve Parliament next week, sending the country to the ballot box on Oct. 14.

Meanhwile, the Green Party scored a coup of sorts when it managed to recruit sitting independent MP Blair Wilson thus securing a place for party leader Elizabeth May in the debates. In response to that news, spokespuppet for the Harper regime Kory Teneycke told reporters Saturday afternoon that he didn't think May should be allowed to debate because she's said she publicly supports Dion for PM. He said they're effectively two members of the same party - more proof that the Cons don't understand the concept of democracy.

Here's the actual Green Party statement from May, 2007:

We have agreed that the country needs a strong signal that puts progress ahead of partisanship. To achieve Kyoto, Canada needs MPs and a government that actually understand the threat of climate change and the need for urgent action. This reality has impelled us to seek limited cooperation. While the need for cooperation may be obvious to the average Canadian, within political parties, one is not supposed to allow even limited cooperation.

We admit we are different from most adversarial, political leaders. We respect each other. We will always put the country and the planet first.

Out of respect for each other and out of our shared commitment to a greener Canada, we are not running candidates in each other’s ridings.

We recognize that a government in which St├ęphane Dion served as Prime Minister could work well with a Green Caucus of MPs, led by Elizabeth May, committed to action on climate. On many issues, we would have policy disagreements; on others cooperation would be possible. No matter what the issue, we recognize that, although opponents in the political sphere, we are committed to doing politics differently. That means open and transparent, fair-minded communication. Another issue where we believe progress could be made is in the potential for electoral reform.

Today there are larger issues at stake than the petty partisanship of politics. We are confident that Canadians will appreciate this shared commitment and our efforts to protect our children’s future.

Let's see just how far the Cons go to try to muzzle May if an election is called and they refuse to debate her.

Update: Dion agrees to meet Harper [on Labour Day] for election talk

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