The Bull Meter: John Baird on the bills that died because of the election

Welcome to the Bull Meter, where we fact-check dubious claims


[mac_quote person=”John Baird” date=”March 23, 2011″]The opposition has helped pass a number of bills through the House in the last six weeks. That’s a good deal of progress. An election now would kill that progress. It would kill several important pieces of legislation.[/mac_quote]

[mac_bull score=”2″]

When parliament is prorogued or dissolved for an election, discussion on any government bill that hasn’t yet been passed must start from scratch when the chambers reconvene. When speaking with reporters last week, Baird lamented the fate of three particular bills: Bill C-49, a law to crack down on human smuggling; Bill S-10, to fight organized drug crime; and Bill C-60, to give citizen arrest powers to victims of crime. While Bill C-49 and C-60 were introduced in the last session of Parliament, Bill S-10 has been around, in various incarnations, for over three years.

Justice minister Rob Nicholson used the same occasion to reiterate Baird’s point, mentioning two other bills: Bill C-54, which provides for tougher penalties for sexual predators who commit sexual offences against children; and Bill C-16, which would further restrict conditional sentences including house arrest for serious violent crime. Again, while Bill C-54 is new, Bill C-16 used to be called C-42, and has been around since 2009.

The bottom line is this: It’s true the government’s defeat means work on some bills will be cut short. Still, Conservatives have had plenty of time to pass some of the other legislation that will be killed because of the election. So blaming the dissolution of parliament for the death of legislation is mostly truthful, but a bit of an exaggeration.

Heard something that doesn’t sound quite right? Send quotes from the campaign trail to macbullmeter@gmail.com and we’ll tell you just how much bull they contain.


Bill C-49

Bill S-10

Bill C-60

Bill C-54

Bill C-16


The Bull Meter: John Baird on the bills that died because of the election

  1. And where is the list of discarded bills caused by prorogation, twice?

  2. That's the Hypocrisy Meter. Different site. Under construction.

  3. I miss bill C-12.

  4. Better be under construction near Darlington. It'll need nuclear power.

  5. I am sure that 2/5 is a disappointing start for Baird, given the site was practically created for him. Hopefully he brings his full taurific game to bear in his next appearance.

  6. "…Bill C-54, which provides for tougher penalties for sexual predators who commit sexual offences against children…"

    Well, just a matter of time before Stephen Harper tells us that the Liberals are pro-pedophile. Hey, it's no dumber than the coalition rhetoric.

  7. Bill C-12 which would increase the number of MPs by 30 also died. No great loss.

  8. I love the concept of the bull meter.

    However, I would re-orient it towards Macleans’ pathetic opinion piece on usage-based Internet billing. It’s so chock full of bull, that it makes John Baird look like… (what’s the opposite of bull? A bear? Or does that only apply to stock markets?)

    That ubb opinion piece also got a record number of comments (about 800), and yet it’s well-hidden on the Macleans website. Go figure.

  9. I will not vote for a party that supports mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent and victimless drug crimes (Bill S-10). Its pretty much the stupidest idea ever to put people in jail for drugs. Reality check: if you don't want 'the children' doing drugs, putting them in prison is not a good idea! Look at the US and Mexico: the war on drugs is working so well for them! Ideology has no place in law, and it makes me sick to see people support this nonsense.

  10. They're having trouble with it – it keeps self-destructing.

  11. Is this a misprint? Shouldn't it read "John Baird on the BULL that died because of the election"

  12. Did you Macleans' folks think this "Bull Meter" up over lunch/dinner at Hy's Steakhouse??

    Five dead bills, three legit, two bogus = Medium rare

    I like it!

  13. Yeah, I looked at the picture on the Post link twice and i have no idea what you are talking about.
    You seem to imply that there is something wrong with the photo.
    Maybe you could explain to the rest of us what you see when look at the photo.

  14. Resorting to insinuations and innuendo involving our Prime Minister and a small child is shameful. You are entirely within your rights to engage in partisan attacks (if you must), but this sort of comment is completely uncalled for.

  15. A snap election and two proroguings of Parliament by the Conservatives have killed more than 60 Government bills. Several, including Senate reform and crime bills, have died multiple deaths. Politics has trumped legislation for this Government from the outset and even when the House was in session, the Government House Leaders (Van Loan, Hill and Baird if memory serves?), have done a great job of introducing bills and then failed to advance them in Committee or on the floor after the fact. The have preferred to push through omnibus measures in the budget or make policy changes via Ministerial actions or Orders in Cabinet.

    Here' s a useful list of what's been lost by the Conservative's refusal to cooperate with any of the three Opposition parties this time around (it also shows the bills that HAVE been passed by the House as a whole):

    Note the number of Bills that the Government has not moved on for more than a year.

  16. ♥♥♥♥ for the Bull Meter concept.

  17. the Liberals are pro-pedophile? You didn't know that?

  18. Did they kill that bill when the prorogued parliament? How many times have we had to re-start pedophile legislation because of that?

  19. I agree 100%.

    We seemed to be creeping toward decriminalization before these Conservatives got into power.

    I’ll never vote for them, and this issue is one of the main reasons why.

  20. These bills have died several times because of an opposition who constantly force elections over partisan issues.

  21. Minimum sentences start at 6 months for 4 plants (about 12 lbs). Kids with a few joints don't run sophisticated grow-ops.

    I know of at least 5 people who've been caught in the past year with amounts ranging from a few joints to a couple ounces. The smaller amounts got a slap on the wrist–a $400 fine–or a warning. The larger amount got 3 months house arrest (after getting caught 3 previous times with similar quantities and receiving a warning).

  22. why would I want to listen to Baird….on purpose!

  23. Minimum sentences start at trafficking.

    Passing a joint is trafficking.

  24. And we have our first 5 Bull Alarm, folks.

    Congratulations to Atchison, who's so completely shameless, he'll lie about the election most recently completed, which Stephen Harper started against the spirit and the stated reasoning of his fellow CPC members for the fixed election law.

  25. I’m no expert on the subject, but I’ve always been under the impression/or told, that a good plant will yield 1 lb, not 4 lbs., maybe if you grow it into a tree and weight the whole plant including the garbage, (like the stalk/branches and roots).

  26. Holy whopper of a LIE!!!!

    It was Harper that Prorogued TWICE and went against his own Election promise about fixed elections to call the last one. All those former lost bills would be Harpers fault.

    I’m all for supporting that idea for a law against Lying. Whether it be in Advertising or Free Speech.

    Liars are scum of the Earth, and certainly can’t be considered Christan in any way. You know, the commandment about ‘bearing false witness’. I may be an Pagan/Atheist, but a few of those commandments are good ones to live by.

  27. "an opposition who constantly force elections"

    Which elections? Until now, there's only been one since the Conservatives took power.

    Harper called his first election (2008) in contrast to the fixed election date law his own government had passed a year prior. He thought he'd win a majority against a weak opposition. He didn't, but he did manage to kill his government's own bills.

    Harper subsequently twice prorogued Parliament — once to avoid a non-confidence vote and a second time to avoid scrutiny of documents by the House (a right later affirmed by the Speaker) — again killing his own bills.

    The current election is the result of a non-confidence motion after Harper's government refused to disclose budget information to the House, becoming the first government in history to be found in contempt of Parliament.

    Harper's bills have died at his own hands, every time.

    You're not being honest.

  28. I really sounds like him, looks amazingly like him as well. good post.

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