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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

To prorogue or not to prorogue

Apparently, rumours abound on Parliament Hill that the Conservative government is thinking of proroguing Parliament until March 2010, after the Olympics. Should this happen, several Tory bills like the ending of the gun registry will die, but so too will the House committee discussion of the Afghan detainee file.

I think the prime minister should prorogue. This would give us a chance to enjoy the Olympics in peace while the eyes of the world are on us without the constant carping and sniping from the opposition parties. A period of rest and recalibration one might say.

Sure, we’ll lose some useful legislation—not the least of which is the killing of the gun registry. But with the Liberal-controlled Senate in open defiance of the will of the House of Commons—and, for that matter, the will of their leader, Michael Ignatieff—I question whether we’d ever get it passed anyway.

Better to prorogue and wait for PM Stephen Harper to fill the five Senate seats that become available on Jan. 2. Apparently, the makeup of Senate committees will change only after this parliamentary session ends. So the PM needs a new session to take control of the Upper House.

The most critical piece of legislation before the Senate is the bill that makes Employment Insurance more lucrative. However, the Senate will sit again on Tuesday, and the bill could pass before senators break for Christmas.

Given the obstruction and political nonsense we have had from the opposition since 2006, I am convinced that we need a majority government to move our country forward.

I’m for proroguing parliament when the Senate takes its Christmas break and return for a new session in March when the PM can table an election budget. We can then go to the polls once more and try to get a parliament that works.

Should we lose in an election then, we would, at least, control the Senate and can soften some of the most egregious legislation we can expect from a Bob Rae-Liberal/NDP controlled House of Commons.

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© 2009 Russell G. Campbell
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6 comments — This is a moderated blog and comments will appear when approved. Please don’t resubmit if your comment doesn’t appear immediately, and please do not post material that is obscene, harassing, defamatory, or otherwise objectionable.

  1. Take that government accountability! So what if we have to terminate the only decent piece of legislation the CPC has introduced in eons? They need more time to bury us in debt!

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  2. Apparently, since the gun registry bill would not die, as it is a private member's bill and safe since a 1998 change (According to the CTF).

    The HST/Self Employed UI benefits bill would as it is a government bill and as a government bill it would die unless it had royal assent from the senate. Not sure on that point.

    Interestingly enough, the NDP voted against UI reform by opposing that HST/UI bill.

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  3. With the recession over,
    it is time for a new Soeech from the Throne.

    ReplyDelete
  4. And what if the Governor General decides not to accept prorogation this time?

    In any case I am against this. We pay our member of Parliament to work and they will get a ridiculously long vacation if they prorogue again, if I understand correctly.

    Plus this will set a second bad precedent.

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  5. Thanks for your correction about the gun registry, Kerry.

    ReplyDelete

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