Monday, December 22, 2008

Steve Stacks The Senate

So, Harper has appointed 18 senators.

Mr. Harper has always believed senators should be elected and he refrained from filling most vacancies while trying to make the upper chamber more democratic. Those efforts ran into roadblocks erected in Parliament and by Ontario and Quebec.


Oh yes, Mr. Harper's half-baked attempt at Senate reform - formally call Bill C-43, and was one of the most ridiculous bills tabled by the HarperCon$ in 2006. It did not deserve to pass - any more than Harper's equally ridiculous (and now irrelevant) "fixed election dates" law. (which he saw fit to ignore this past fall)

“We've invited the provinces to hold elections. We've put an electoral bill before the House of Commons. But for the most part, neither in Parliament nor in the provinces has there been any willingness to move forward on reform.”


Wow, can you hear the tone of petulant whining in this quote? My goodness, Mr. Harper, you must really be missing the point. Nobody buys that your "reforms" are meaningful.

What really irritates me about these appointments comes in two forms:

1. Mr. Harper is making these appointments during a prorogue of Parliament that he triggered to avoid a confidence vote that he would likely have lost. As far as I'm concerned, along with a bunch of other patronage appointments made during this period of parliamentary limbo are simply a demonstration of how Harper abuses his position.

2. As The Toronto Star points out, Harper has tried to attach strings to these senatorial appointments:

According to Harper’s office, today’s appointees have all promised to support his plans for Senate reform, including eight-year term limits. But they are not bound to run for election themselves.


So - in short what Harper has done is bought his votes in the Senate, by insisting that they vote for whatever brain damaged legislation he puts forth.

Mr. Harper neither understands nor appreciates the function of the Senate in Canada as a check and balance to the often fractious House of Commons. He apparently believes that Senators are subject to the same kind of arm twisting and thuggery that he routinely applies in the House of Commons caucus.

[Update 23/12/08]
Comments on this article are closed before they degenerate any further.
[/Update]

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Exactly how do you "stack" a Senate when the majority is still liberal?

Just another dumb ass Lieberal slant I guess.

MgS said...

Let's see, Harper just appointed 18 senators - that's a record all by itself.

I'm sure if he could appoint more, he would have. After all, he's made it clear that "Conservative Principles"(tm) are conditional anyways.

His record of patronage appointments since asking the GG to prorogue parliament makes it clear that Harper would stack the senate as heavily in his own favor as possible.

Harper is a totalitarian - his way or the highway is the only thing in his mind. I wish it were otherwise, but his actions are clear.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous @ 8:38 Pm

You want to play ad hominem attacks? Here goes....

1) Get your facts straight before you open your F'n mouth!! Harper has indeed engaged in 'Stacking' the Senate by issuing 'conditions' on the appointments, one of which is that they agree to pass any legislation that he tells them to. This removes the ability of the Senators to actually have any effective input.

2) 'dumb ass Lieberal slant'?? Screw You @sshole!! Your buddy Harper has lied and mislead the Canadian people far more than the collective efforts of ALL of the PMs to come before him.

3) When Harper can't get his way, he bully's, and lies his way around the issue. He has requested that parliament be prorogued so that he could avoid a non-confidence motion. He is the only PM who has ever launched a lawsuit at the opposition in an attempt to keep them quiet, and the foundation for the lawsuit in the first place was a LIE!!. Since he first came into power, governmental operations have become more opaque and secretive, NOT more transparent as he campaigned on. He has repeatedly lied and twisted the facts regarding the constitution where it applies to coalition governments, he has lied about his involvement with the Bloc in the exact same attempt to topple the government in 2004.He has lied about the Bloc having veto power over the government. He has lied about Senate reform, and has attempted to subvert the constitutional process in order to get his own way. He has lied about the Senate 'holding up passage of bills' from the democratically elected House.

So in short, next time you want to post a reply, think it through and come up with a coherent reply. Don't come back and use inflammatory language, the result just gets you the same stuffed back in your face. Above all else, think for yourself, research the facts.

SB