Manipulative record necessitates sober second thought

  Niagara Falls, Ontario,
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
by: Joe Hueglin

When speaking of the Afghanistan Mission Stephen Harper said: "the mission won't be extended beyond the February 2009 deadline without Parliamentary consensus." What did he mean by consensus? Is it a broad measure of agreement or a simple majority in the House of Commons?.

To be considered local campaign expenses, advertising must focus on the local campaign. Does that mean that money transferred to local from national campaigns and adding a candidates? name as a tag-line to national advertising meets legal requirements? Through this manipulation Conservatives circumvented national spending limits, with a bonus: local campaigns increased their rebates from Elections Canada.

A fixed election date was enacted, except when a government was defeated in the House of Commons on a motion of confidence. At least that was the general perception of the intent of the legislation. Suddenly the government is taking the position that: "There is nothing in the law that takes away the Crown's traditional and usual prerogatives on this matter".


Harper at one time suggested that the Senate would provide a check on his power. Now he is trying to over-ride that check by using a vote in the House of Commons to try to railroad a complex omnibus crime bill through the Senate. Why is it so important to prevent the Senate from carrying out due diligence? Is it possible that the wording of parts of the bill, such those involved with dangerous offenders and the use of reverse onus, could be open to manipulation?

Harper & Company's record of manipulating the meaning of the law necessitates a sober second look at everything he says and does. Consideration must be given to determining what terms within any Act are open to manipulation.


Joe Hueglin

1. Persichilli, Angelo, Harper says he hasn't changed his position on Afghanistan, July 2, 2007, The Hill Times

2. Mayeda, Andrew, Going to the polls? (pdf) February 12, 2008, The Gazette

Photo credit: Canadian Armed Forces image from Kandahar



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