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The 7 - Current Events & Politics - Canadian Budget Vote Set For May 19th Register and log in to post!
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Freeway
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#1 Posted on 16.5.05 1426.19
Reposted on: 16.5.12 1426.56
CBC

Here's the deal: 308 sets in Parliament. Of those: 132 are Liberal, 99 are Conservative, 54 are Bloc Quebecois, 19 are NDP and 3 are held by Independents. The Liberals HAVE to pass the budget or else by constitutional law, there must be an election. The NDP are expected to vote with the Liberals while the opposition parties (the Conservatives & the Bloc) are expected to vote together. So, it's those 3 Independents that'll determine the vote.

And remember, if there's an election...the earliest it can be is June 27th.
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haz
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#2 Posted on 16.5.05 1503.52
Reposted on: 16.5.12 1506.35
It looked like this vote was going to end up depending on if everyone shows up too.

At least one Conservative MP is not going to be there due to Cancer surgery. Both the Liberals and NDP offered to have one person sit out in order to make it an even vote...

It will be an interesting week in Ottawa. The Conservatives have said that they will respect the results and try and help make Parliament work if the budget passes...
Bob C
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#3 Posted on 17.5.05 0950.27
Reposted on: 17.5.12 0950.44
Stronach just joined the Liberal Party. Looks like Harper has been PUNK'D!

I can't believe that Martin will get away with it and win the vote. It's not done yet but with Stronach's defection, it certainly helps him.

I am happy that no one from Le Bloc Québécois won't do anything like that. Like them or not (and I'm sure that most of you hate them), they have principles. Supporting Martin is supporting corruption.
Stilton
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#4 Posted on 17.5.05 1009.12
Reposted on: 17.5.12 1009.15
It's true. This is a political bombshell for the conservatives.

Story here:
http://www.cbc.ca/story/canada/national/2005/05/17/stronach-liberals050517.html

As many gaffes as the Liberals have made, I'd still rather have the devil I know. Harper is too socially conservative for most Canadians and he knows it. The Tories won't have a viable (or palatable) leader any time soon, unless Bernard Lord jumps to federal politics.

(edited by Stilton on 17.5.05 1119)
Big Bad
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#5 Posted on 17.5.05 2119.33
Reposted on: 17.5.12 2119.42
As a Liberal voter, I can only say.....BWA HA HA HA HA HA! Once again, Harper demonstrates just how much of an ineffectual "leader" he is. This is the kind of public humilation that, in the public eye, goes beyond any sort of sponsorship scandal. If there's a non-confidence vote after the budget, then the Liberals will not only win an election and possibly get a majority. Harper is screwed.

A juicy tidbit....Stronach is dating Peter McKay, the Conservative party second-in-command. I expect some nasty phone calls to be flying around Ottawa tonight.
Freeway
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#6 Posted on 17.5.05 2140.50
Reposted on: 17.5.12 2150.26
    Originally posted by Big Bad
    As a Liberal voter, I can only say.....BWA HA HA HA HA HA! Once again, Harper demonstrates just how much of an ineffectual "leader" he is. This is the kind of public humilation that, in the public eye, goes beyond any sort of sponsorship scandal. If there's a non-confidence vote after the budget, then the Liberals will not only win an election and possibly get a majority. Harper is screwed.

    A juicy tidbit....Stronach is dating Peter McKay, the Conservative party second-in-command. I expect some nasty phone calls to be flying around Ottawa tonight.


Well, word around news channels is that Stronach & McKay were off again weeks before this hit, and that McKay was the LAST person (other than Harper) to find out.

AND NOW, the Tories will support the budget. The Tories will support C-43 (the original budget), but go after C-48 (the Grit/NDP alliance).
BigVitoMark
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#7 Posted on 18.5.05 1525.30
Reposted on: 18.5.12 1525.33
    Originally posted by Freeway420
    Well, word around news channels is that Stronach & McKay were off again weeks before this hit, and that McKay was the LAST person (other than Harper) to find out.

    AND NOW, the Tories will support the budget. The Tories will support C-43 (the original budget), but go after C-48 (the Grit/NDP alliance).


The CBC stories have all said that MacKay was the first one to find out, and was the one who told Harper Tuesday morning. Not that it really changes anything.

I believe this was the Tory agenda all along, to vote for the budget and shoot down the NDP component. There are some valid points in that budget, including the resource deals with the Atlantic provinces, that are consistent with CPC policy. Scrapping billions in tax cuts to spend on frivilous social programs, on the other hand, is much easier to justify voting down, confidence motion or not.
haz
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#8 Posted on 20.5.05 0721.25
Reposted on: 20.5.12 0721.27
Well, we will stay with the status quo for the time being...

Yeas 152
Nays 152

The Speaker of the house follows parliamentary procedure and votes to keep the bill alive...

It all came down to the three independant members. Going into the actual vote, it was known that David Kilgore would vote Nay and Carolyn Parrish would vote Yea...

All came down to Chuck Cadman, who did not make intentions known... He voted Yea, therefore the tie...

Certainly an interesting day in Canadian politics.

----

Aftermath... I know it was close, but I can't believe that Stephen Harper did not respond in a more positive manner to Paul Martin's request for constructive work in the house, instead of saying the he and the opposition will continue to try and knock them out of power...

The Government was going to accept the decision and call an election if they lost. The opposition should also be accepting of the decision....
tarnish
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#9 Posted on 20.5.05 0742.47
Reposted on: 20.5.12 0742.54
    Originally posted by haz
    The Government was going to accept the decision and call an election if they lost. The opposition should also be accepting of the decision....


Wouldn't that be nice?

Harper played this all wrong IMHO. He had public outrage on his side, but his pitbull strategy has just ended up making him look desperate. And he's not going to start looking any better if he doesn't accept what has happened and get back to helping Parliament work until there is actually an election.

The Liberals have bought more time. And I think the more time this government has to distance itself from Chretien's reign, the better they end up looking. I think the real winners will be the NDP. Now that the Reform/Alliance has moved to the middle by joining the Conservatives, the NDP becomes the real "alternative" party; and they're on the left. I expect the next election will yield another Liberal minority with the NDP possibly growing enough to become the official opposition. And with that, the right will go back into flux in this country.

Which I think is a good thing. The Conservatives have not yet shown that they can all be united on a single platform, save, "we don't like the current government." Harper's the best leader they've had so far, but anybody looks good next to Preston Manning and Stockwell Day. I just hope Harper hangs around for a while despite this setback; if a Creampuff Casper Milquetoast like Peter MacKay takes the reins, there won't be any progress on the right for years to come.
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#10 Posted on 20.5.05 0859.47
Reposted on: 20.5.12 0902.14
Maybe now...the Government can work together to run the country, instead of running each other into the ground?

Here are the leaders of our fair country commenting on yesterday's proceedings. (ctv.ca)

I have my issues with Belinda Stronache...I think she should call an election in her riding. I mean, her riding voted CONSERVATIVE, and she's sitting in as a Liberal. I think that's a gross betrayal of trust, in my eyes.

If people voted HER into office, let it show on the vote. I'm glad I don't live in that riding. I voted NDP last election.

If i'm not mistaken, though...this isn't the first major change in the Conservative/Liberal history: didn't Jean Charest move from being the federal (Progressive)Conservative leader to becoming the Liberal leader in Quebec? Something like that.

I also have a problem with the Speaker of the House being a Liberal; they should have a non-partisan member there instead. But that's another story for another day.

(edited by SOK on 20.5.05 0815)
tarnish
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#11 Posted on 20.5.05 1016.26
Reposted on: 20.5.12 1017.39

    I think she should call an election in her riding. I mean, her riding voted CONSERVATIVE, and she's sitting in as a Liberal. I think that's a gross betrayal of trust, in my eyes.


No, her riding voted for HER, not her party. She was a Red Tory at best. Moving to the Liberal party (ideally) means she believes that the interests of her constituents are best reflected by the policies of that party. If her constituents voted for her based on the party she was a member of rather than her platform and her person, it is they who were mistaken.

Further, Ms. Stronach can't "call an election in her riding." She can vacate her seat, which would force a by-election, but she can't call one. When Charest took the helm of the Liberal party in Quebec, he vacated his Parliamentary seat. He still had to win a seat in the Quebec legislature. Totally different thing.

There have been MPs who have switched sides many times over the years (both here and in similar governments such as England). Also, a couple of the so-called key players in the budget vote were former partisan politicians who decided to go independant; nobody's calling for them to vacate, yet "going independant" is essentially the same thing as switching parties.

Switching parties does not unqualify a Member of Parliament. And Parliament will not expel a member for anything short of a criminal act. If the people of Aurora truly believe that they have been betrayed by Stronach, they will have their chance to say so in the general election that is all but guaranteed later this year. Even if Stronach vacated, the House would likely try to avoid any by-election due to a general election being imminent (less than 180 days away). This would leave the constiuents of the Aurora riding without representation in the House until the general election. Surely this is not a better state of affairs for them.


    I also have a problem with the Speaker of the House being a Liberal; they should have a non-partisan member there instead.


Non-partisan? So we shouldn't have a speaker unless we've got an independant with a seat? Last I checked, the Speaker is an elected member of Parliament like every other member. Would you rather have someone in that position of power who hasn't been elected by anyone?

The Speaker of the House used to be appointed by the Prime Minister (there was a vote, but it was a formality at best). Since 1986, the entire House has voted on the Speaker. This is a far better system than any appointment system (political appointments are generally bad in my book). There are no other useful possibilities for choosing the speaker.

I can't think of any even vaguely democratic government where the position of Speaker is chosen in any way other than by appointment or by a vote in the House. This includes the American system.

The Speaker is to remain impartial while presiding and only votes when there is a tied vote on the floor, same as everywhere else.

You might consider brushing up your understanding of our Canadian Government and Political System here and here (wikipedia.org).
haz
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#12 Posted on 20.5.05 1039.18
Reposted on: 20.5.12 1041.17
    Originally posted by SOK
    I also have a problem with the Speaker of the House being a Liberal; they should have a non-partisan member there instead. But that's another story for another day.

    (edited by SOK on 20.5.05 0815)



The speaker is non-partisan. As he even said in his remarks last night, he is not voting based on what political party is a member of...

Political history states that the speaker shall not be the one to ever STOP a bill, no matter where is originates. If Parliament can not decide, he will always push it through to the next level....

He even stated last night in his remarks that he had pushed through a private-members bill from the Opposition side of the house a few weeks ago, under the same circumstances.
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#13 Posted on 20.5.05 1258.13
Reposted on: 20.5.12 1258.19
    Originally posted by haz
      Originally posted by SOK
      I also have a problem with the Speaker of the House being a Liberal; they should have a non-partisan member there instead. But that's another story for another day.

      (edited by SOK on 20.5.05 0815)



    The speaker is non-partisan. As he even said in his remarks last night, he is not voting based on what political party is a member of...

    Political history states that the speaker shall not be the one to ever STOP a bill, no matter where is originates. If Parliament can not decide, he will always push it through to the next level....

    He even stated last night in his remarks that he had pushed through a private-members bill from the Opposition side of the house a few weeks ago, under the same circumstances.


Either way...we are stuck with a Liberal Government....and that isn't a good thing.

One can only hope the other parties get their act together before the next election.

BigVitoMark
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#14 Posted on 20.5.05 1259.48
Reposted on: 20.5.12 1308.36
    Originally posted by tarnish
    No, her riding voted for HER, not her party. She was a Red Tory at best. Moving to the Liberal party (ideally) means she believes that the interests of her constituents are best reflected by the policies of that party. If her constituents voted for her based on the party she was a member of rather than her platform and her person, it is they who were mistaken.


I have some friends in Aurora, and it is definitely not as cut and dried as that. There is a lot of "if we wanted a Liberal we would have voted Liberal" sentiment there, which should come as no surprise given how much general anti-Liberal sentiment there was last year when the early sponsorship scandal stuff was coming out.

Also recall that "her platform" was the Conservative platform. A vote for Belinda Stronach was supposed to be a vote to scrap the gun registry, not a vote for billions of dollars in NDP social spending, which is what her switch brought about. In the system we have, it is impossible to vote entirely for the individual regardless of party since the single vote benefits both.

Going independent is not the same as switching parties. Cadman, of course, was elected as an independent, and he seemed to be acting on what his constituents wanted, which is the right thing to do. Neither Parrish or Kilgour, who left the Liberals for different reasons, made a decided change in what they stood for once they got elected. Parrish still voted the way she, presumably, would have if she hadn't been expelled from the government. Kilgour, it is worth noting, would have been out of work had the vote gone his way as he is on the record as saying he will not run again. His constituency would have had the chance to replace him if they did not agree with his view. None of these three jumped aboard the bandwagon of ideas they specifically campaigned against less than a year ago for personal gain.

Regarding SOK's comment about the speaker, I have no problem with how Milliken handled this whole situation. Remember, if you had a non partisan speaker up there Milliken still would have had his MP seat and would have voted with the Liberals. They win either way. Besides, as he said in his address before he voted, it is parliamentary custom for the speaker to allow the bill to proceed to the next reading in the event of a tie, which he did. He applied custom in the Conservatives' favour on a couple of occasions in recent weeks as well, which should be noted.
tarnish
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#15 Posted on 20.5.05 1339.37
Reposted on: 20.5.12 1343.00
    Originally posted by BigVitoMark
    I have some friends in Aurora, and it is definitely not as cut and dried as that.


It never, ever is


    Also recall that "her platform" was the Conservative platform. A vote for Belinda Stronach was supposed to be a vote to scrap the gun registry, not a vote for billions of dollars in NDP social spending, which is what her switch brought about. In the system we have, it is impossible to vote entirely for the individual regardless of party since the single vote benefits both.


I still think the onus is on the people to pick a candidate, not a party. If I'm faced with a candidate I like and respect who is in the "wrong" party for my political tastes, I'm still voting for the candidate, not the party. I know to some that sounds short-sighted, but I think the reverse is true. I live in Scott Brison's riding and I would have voted for him as a Conservative if he hadn't switched parties. 100 miles away is Peter MacKay's riding (I grew up there, actually); I wouldn't vote for him at gunpoint.

And platform issues, though often a good guideline, are never a good idea as the basis for a vote. There are Liberals who also wish to see the end of the massive and expensive mistake that is the gun registry. And when was the last time a party actually lived up to their platform, anyway? (Yeah, that's a terrible non-sequitor )


    Going independent is not the same as switching parties.


Some would argue that it's worse, in fact, because when a member leaves a party to go independent, any clout based on party membership goes right out the window. It takes serious pills to sit as an independent; it takes even more to actually serve one's constituency effectively. Note that I'm not saying that's a good thing, just that it's reality as I perceive it.

The whole NDP spending thing reads much more poorly in Ontario than it does just about anywhere else (well, maybe not Alberta ); you guys are still smarting from Bob Rae. I have family in Ontario who actually went from NDP to Reform after Rae got through with them. Mind, it was dumb luck that put him there in the first place and the timing couldn't have been worse (worst recession in Ontario history and a "socialist" government in place).

Much of my stance on all these matters stems from a desire to give Paul Martin a chance to lead. Thirty years ago his policies would have been considered Conservative, especially fiscally; this is what our country needs, not a Conservative party that hasn't yet got its own story straight (although Harper is admittedly making progress).. I do not find Martin guilty by association in the sponsorship scandal, nor do I even fully associate his Liberal government with that of Chretien (who is actually starting to make Brian Fucking Mulroney look like a straight-up man). And my politics tolerate the Liberals buddying up with the NDP faaaaaaaaaaaar more easily than the Conservatives buddying up with the Bloc. Anyone who thinks that there's any difference in those two alliances is horribly, horribly naive in my book. Social spending, if it gets out of hand, can be reeled in. Separation of Quebec cannot. And out here in Atlantic Canada, the loss of Quebec would be the death knell for our way of life. Period.
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#16 Posted on 20.5.05 2017.34
Reposted on: 20.5.12 2019.50
    Originally posted by tarnish
    I still think the onus is on the people to pick a candidate, not a party. If I'm faced with a candidate I like and respect who is in the "wrong" party for my political tastes, I'm still voting for the candidate, not the party.


And I think that is a perfectly legitimate thing to do. With that in mind people should realize that someone elected on personality rather than party will still likely have to toe the party line on most votes in the House. If the person is still your preferred choice in that case, by all means cast your vote accordingly. Personally, I would rather have a drone who will vote the way I want on important issues. That is, after all, what an MP's primary function is supposed to be.

People have different criteria for what is required to earn a vote. To use your example, I would happily vote for Peter MacKay but would have a very hard time voting for Scott Brison, regardless of party. Anyone who publicly adopts a "well, that's his problem" attitude to a fellow MP who can not attend a critical vote due to cancer surgery needs to check himself and his priorities, in my opinion. Regardless, it's hard to apply a universal rule to how people should form their decisions

    Originally posted by tarnish
    Some would argue that it's worse, in fact, because when a member leaves a party to go independent, any clout based on party membership goes right out the window. It takes serious pills to sit as an independent; it takes even more to actually serve one's constituency effectively. Note that I'm not saying that's a good thing, just that it's reality as I perceive it.


Again, depends on what you want. I'd rather have had my independent MP vote the right way for me when it counts than have someone with some stroke working for things I don't agree with.


    Originally posted by tarnish


    The whole NDP spending thing reads much more poorly in Ontario than it does just about anywhere else (well, maybe not Alberta )


I don't think it has anything to do with Bob Rae or even the fact that it is the NDP whose measures are being put in place. I wouldn't care if it was the King of England asking for public child care, I would still oppose it.

    Originally posted by tarnish
    Much of my stance on all these matters stems from a desire to give Paul Martin a chance to lead. Thirty years ago his policies would have been considered Conservative, especially fiscally; this is what our country needs, not a Conservative party that hasn't yet got its own story straight (although Harper is admittedly making progress). I do not find Martin guilty by association in the sponsorship scandal, nor do I even fully associate his Liberal government with that of Chretien (who is actually starting to make Brian Fucking Mulroney look like a straight-up man).


Exactly what has Paul Martin done to warrant that kind of blind faith? Just because he was so long thought to be next in line behind Chretien does not mean he's entitled to be Prime Minister at all costs. Don't forget that for the first nine years, give or take, of the Chretien regime Martin was #2 in the pecking order. Things didn't sour between the two until Martin got tired of waiting for his turn sometime in 2002. Also, most of Martin's prominent MPs were part of the Chretien years, so I don't see where this distinguishing between the two comes from. If the people in charge are not responsible for what is happening in the government then who is? And how do you hold them accountable if you don't vote them out?

    Originally posted by tarnish
    Social spending, if it gets out of hand, can be reeled in. Separation of Quebec cannot.


As a Libertarian and a Quebec sovereigntist, I don't see us finding much middle ground on this point.
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#17 Posted on 20.5.05 2059.59
Reposted on: 20.5.12 2100.00
    Originally posted by tarnish
    No, her riding voted for HER, not her party.
Now, how do you know that specifically? How many people say "Heck, I'll vote for so-and-so, regardless of who they represent, cuz they're whatever?"? Come on, now.

    Originally posted by tarnish
    Further, Ms. Stronach can't "call an election in her riding." She can vacate her seat, which would force a by-election, but she can't call one.


Fine, then...if you want to pull hairs, there should be a way that the PUBLIC in her riding can request an election called. I mean, the people in Aurora voted for CONSERVATIVE representation, not Liberal.

    Originally posted by tarnish
    When Charest took the helm of the Liberal party in Quebec, he vacated his Parliamentary seat. He still had to win a seat in the Quebec legislature. Totally different thing.
No, not totally different; he was PC in federal politics, and if I'm not mistaken, he went Liberal when going into provincial politics.

    Originally posted by tarnish
    Switching parties does not unqualify a Member of Parliament. And Parliament will not expel a member for anything short of a criminal act.
Maybe not, but I think that it is a betrayal of trust. In all honesty, if Belinda had these doubts about the Conservatives, she really should have held some form of town forum or counsel, and held a vote to see whether her constituants still supported her, even though her political idealisms changed.

    Originally posted by tarnish
    Non-partisan? So we shouldn't have a speaker unless we've got an independant with a seat? Last I checked, the Speaker is an elected member of Parliament like every other member. Would you rather have someone in that position of power who hasn't been elected by anyone?
In times such as this, I think someone totally unbiased would work perfectly. I mean, the vote hinged on ONE person, and the Speaker is a Liberal. If you believe he would be unbiased, then I have oceanfront property to sell you in Alberta, pal.

(edited by SOK on 20.5.05 2005)
Freeway
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#18 Posted on 20.5.05 2105.18
Reposted on: 20.5.12 2107.35
-1997: Reform Party member Rob Anders is elected in Calgary West with 47% of the riding's votes, beating out Liberal candidate (and future Calgary mayor) Dave Bronconnier by 9,000 votes.
-2000: Now-Canadian Alliance MP Rob Anders is re-elected in Calgary West with 54% of the riding's votes, beating out Progressive Conservative candidate Jim Silye by 20,000 votes and Liberal Frank Bruseker by 22,000 votes.
-During Anders' second term, he made several inflammitory comments including calling Nelson Mandela a terrorist and being the only member of Parliament to vote against a proposition aimed at awarding honorary citizenship to Mandela. Such outbursts led to the 2003-04 campaign Vote Out Anders, aimed at getting anybody but Rob Anders to represent Calgary West. The campaign garnered, at times, national media attention, and was a local story for the duration of the election campaign.
-2004: Shockingly, Rob Anders is re-elected once again under the Conservative Party banner, garnering 55.9% of votes in the riding. Liberal Justin Thompson lost by 16,000 votes.

I'm sorry, kids, but candidates mean nothing when you're in a party-loyal system like we have.
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#19 Posted on 20.5.05 2236.34
Reposted on: 20.5.12 2238.38

    Originally posted by BigVitoMark
    To use your example, I would happily vote for Peter MacKay but would have a very hard time voting for Scott Brison, regardless of party. Anyone who publicly adopts a "well, that's his problem" attitude to a fellow MP who can not attend a critical vote due to cancer surgery needs to check himself and his priorities, in my opinion. Regardless, it's hard to apply a universal rule to how people should form their decisions


Brison has also been the target of all sorts of comments due to his sexuality. I don't know the story behind the comments you mention, but I do know that if poorly-timed stupid comments were enough to keep people out of office, the world would be a different place

Peter MacKay's father was a 40-year back-bencher who gave him everything he wanted, including his own seat in the House of Commons. I've watched him from too close for too long to have any respect for him.

    Originally posted by BigVitoMark
    Exactly what has Paul Martin done to warrant that kind of blind faith?


Nothing, really. That's just the way I feel. I'm not claiming logic on this one. I don't perceive Martin's Liberals and Chretien's Liberals are the same party. I freely admit that I may very well be deluded on this.


    As a Libertarian and a Quebec sovereigntist, I don't see us finding much middle ground on this point.


It is my (not-as-educated-as-I'd-like-it-to-be) opinion that a sovereign Quebec becomes the 55th state. Right after New Brunswick, PEI, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia.

    Originally posted by SOK

    Now, how do you know that specifically? How many people say "Heck, I'll vote for so-and-so, regardless of who they represent, cuz they're whatever?"? Come on, now.



I really don't grok what exactly you're trying to say here. If a candidate does his or her job in his or her campaign, one should know where he or she stands on the issues and where that stance follows and/or doesn't follow the party line. The people don't want to pay attention. So they vote for a party. Then something like this happens and they feel ripped off.



    Fine, then...if you want to pull hairs, there should be a way that the PUBLIC in her riding can request an election called. I mean, the people in Aurora voted for CONSERVATIVE representation, not Liberal.



I'm not "pulling hairs" (did you mean "splitting hairs"?). The people in Aurora voted for representation by Belinda Stronach. No more, no less. Her name was on the ballot, and beside it was the symbol for the Conservative party. If the people of Aurora didn't do any research into the person that Belinda Stronach is and simply voted for her because she was the local Conservative candidate, then they were taking a chance on this happening. If it was all about the party, why have representatives in the first place? Why not just vote for parties and have the parties decide who sits in the seat?

And you really believe that the people should be able to force an election in a riding because they disagree with a decision made by a person they freely and democratically chose? We'd be voting every day and the house would never sit.


    No, not totally different; he was PC in federal politics, and if I'm not mistaken, he went Liberal when going into provincial politics.


Yes, he switched parties. I acknowledged that. But when he went from Federal politics to provincial, he had to vacate his seat, giving the people in his old riding the chance to pick someone new. Further, in order to get into Provincial politics, he had to win a seat in the provincial legislature of Quebec, so people had the chance to basically say "no thank-you." So yes, this is totally different because you have a person with a seat switching party allegiances, but maintaining the same seat.



    In times such as this, I think someone totally unbiased would work perfectly. I mean, the vote hinged on ONE person, and the Speaker is a Liberal. If you believe he would be unbiased, then I have oceanfront property to sell you in Alberta, pal.


If you believe there is such a thing as "someone totally unbiased" I suspect I could sell you back that property in Alberta at a profit.

You continue to show that you have very little actual understanding of the way the government works. The speaker generally does remain rather unbiased; he's got the entire House of Commons keeping him honest, so to speak. Any appearance of impropriety is going to be jumped on immediately by the opposition. Our speaker behaved in a way completely consistent with his position and his duties as they are proscribed.

Party members vote against their consciences all the time in order to vote along the party line as BigVitoMark pointed out. Free votes are rare in our system. Legislation in our country passes because the members of the government vote with the government. The Speaker is a member of the government. Do the math.

    Originally posted by Freeway420
    I'm sorry, kids, but candidates mean nothing when you're in a party-loyal system like we have.


See, I'm not a big fan of party loyal, but I have to admit that it's the reality for much of the country. When I was flying down to Michigan last week for my fiancee's graduation I got into a discussion with her father at Pearson International about the whole "state of the union." Later, on the plane, he, a rather right-wing person politically, pointed out the window at Southwestern Ontario, grinned, and said, "See that? That's a whole lot of Conservative votes right there." And I had to concede he was right.

At four long posts, I should probably be done in this thread. Anyone is welcome to PM me with continuations of these discussions.
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#20 Posted on 20.5.05 2308.15
Reposted on: 20.5.12 2308.18
And I shall punch out of this thread by saying that the "Three & A Half Canadas" pseudo-political theory is what's wrong with Canadian politics. Due to a combination of design and sheer dumb luck, Canada's split (politically) between The West, Quebec, Ontario & the Maritimes. Quebec is the "Half". You win two of those 3 1/2, and you're in. The Liberals are going after Ontario & the Maritimes, smartly. The Conservative coalition back in the Mulroney days worked because the guys who built that coalition understood that if you're not the folks directly responsible for the party being in power, the perception is that you're ignored. The whole "Western Alienation" phenomenon that's emerged over the last 30 years (especially since the National Energy Program under Trudeau) stems from that, I think. The Maritimes have become horribly dependent on Liberal (and NDP) social programs, so there's NO WAY they'll vote Conservative unless the economy does a 180, and that will stop the Conservatives from making any kind of headway nationally.

Well, that and the perception of the Conservatives as a combination of stodgy old folks and crazy cowboys.
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