Wall's efforts to convince premiers to support killing Senate gains no traction - Macleans.ca

Wall’s efforts to convince premiers to support killing Senate gains no traction


NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, Ont. – Saskatchewan premier’s efforts to get his provincial and territorial counterparts to support his call for Senate abolition fell flat Friday at a premier’s summit, despite the expense scandal that’s engulfed Ottawa.

Brad Wall, a vocal opponent of the upper house, made his case before the Council of the Federation meeting wrapped up, but there was no further discussion on the matter.

“Different premiers are at different spots in respect to their view on the Senate,” he said during a break in the meeting.

There are more pressing issues, including the economy and health care, Wall said. “Frankly, disasters are happening that are far more important.”

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, who hosted the event, isn’t in favour of abolishing the Senate, unlike her predecessor Dalton McGuinty.

It’s something the federal government is dealing with and has been referred to the courts as a constitutional matter, she said.

There is “consternation and concern” about the behaviour of some senators, Wynne said. But that’s a separate issue from the broader debate about the existence of the Senate.

“That’s a different discussion and I don’t think should be driven by a particular individual’s behaviour,” she added.

But P.E.I. Premier Robert Ghiz said he doesn’t believe the premiers will be consulted about it when the time comes.

“Harper is not interested in even talking to the premiers about anything, so most likely he’s not going to bring us together to talk about the constitution or the Senate.”

According to a high-ranking provincial official, one of the premiers quipped during the meeting: “We shouldn’t abolish the Senate, we should abolish Mike Duffy.”

Duffy, who represents Prince Edward Island, is one of the senators who has been mired in controversy for allegedly misrepresenting his primary residence as P.E.I. instead of Ottawa to collect thousands of dollars in living expenses.

The RCMP is also investigating the involvement of Nigel Wright, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s former chief of staff, in giving Duffy $90,000 so he could reimburse the Senate for improperly claimed living expenses.

Wright resigned after admitting he gave the money to Duffy. Harper has insisted Wright did not tell him about the “gift” until after news of it leaked out.

Asked about his position on the Senate, given that Duffy represents his province, Ghiz joked: “I thought he was an Ontario senator.”

Ghiz said he’s willing to try for an elected senate. But it isn’t a priority for the premiers, he said, it’s a “hot button issue.”

But as Canada approaches its 150th anniversary, he said, it should examine whether the Senate is fulfilling its purpose to represent the country’s different regions.

“Is that happening today? Some people would say no,” Ghiz said. “So does it have to evolve so it can represent our regions across the country? I think it should.”

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Wall’s efforts to convince premiers to support killing Senate gains no traction

  1. Why should the other Premiers support Wall? He is Harper’s mini-me, a little munchkin who runs around parroting Harper and given how Harper treats the Premiers why should they listen to his homunculus?

    • Wall took on Harper over refugee heath care funding when he had a man sick with cancer in a Saskatchewan hospital and they refused to cover his anti-emetics. I wouldn’t say he is a “munchkin who runs around parroting Harper”. He has no problem calling them like he sees them.

      • He picks his battles carefully and like Kenney and Moore doesn’t cross the dean of men in the cult that is modern conservatism

        • His opinions on abolishing the senate and Trudeau’s speaking fees mirror those of Mulcair not Harper

          • Crazy stalker lady

          • As usual insults no debate back to your basement dwelling world

          • “Look at the pompous , basement dwelling nobody spewing..”
            Because that is debate is it?

            We’re getting into TRO territory here.

          • Just making a correct observation Mr.Nothing

          • My pet chihuahua displays a greater understanding of logic and the English language than you.
            Sack of hammers springs to mind

          • Sack of sh-t for brains comes to mind when it concerns you Mr.NOTHING

          • quite the hateful vocabulary you have there

          • And you don’t Mr.Hypocrite

          • go back and find where I was as bitter. twisted and obsessed as you Francien

          • Can’t handle a woman having an opinion can you?

          • I’m married to one who frequently has opinions, but she presents them in a coherent fashion without the spittle flecked, psychotic vitriol.
            Besides how would I know if you are a woman or not? More to the point how do you know I’m not a woman?

          • Anyone who hates women as much as you do has to be a man. So Wifey works and you sit on the computer all day? By the way I debated you awhile ago under a user name that did not identify gender. You were pompous and superior but lacked the sexist insults

          • I’ll cop to the pompous and superior, but the rest is your imagination. Go back and let me know where I used any sexist insults. You won’t find any because they are figments of you imagination. Straw men invented so you could rant on and on. You realise disagreeing with you doesn’t mean I disagree with all women or even hate you; I just think you are wrong and am not afraid to say so. Your hectoring tone will not stop me either.

            So you’re the one who has to change their identity hey, why? Were you and your poor logic and crass accusations too much for many sites to bear?

            No I work, but work irregular hours and they are sometimes dictated by the weather. Why are you so hateful of manual workers? Why do you hate hard working Canadians so much? (See BS accusations are easy to concoct out of the ether.)

            Any other aspects of my life you wish to attack in your spectacularly ignorant and poorly worded manner? You don’t know me but have invented complete BS about me to try and pad your arguments.

            And there is still nothing that tells me you are a woman or even from my name that tells you I’m not one either, that’s one of the joys and draw backs of the internet.

          • You thinking you actually have something intelligent to add to this forum is your imagination.

          • Still not one example to back up your assertions.

            That’s not intelligent or coherent.

    • Look at the pompous , basement dwelling nobody spewing his ignorant drivel for all to hear. I live in Wall’s riding you know nothing.

      • hmm looks like I’ve picked up a deranged stalker.

        • I don’t stalk no brain self-important zeros with nothing to say Tinkerbell

          • Look, much as I know I fascinate you, it’ll never work out.
            1: you don’t understand English
            2: you are too shrill and weird
            3: I’m kind of worried by your strange obsession with me

          • Back to your basement coward. Look in the mirror and tell yourself you are important and lie to yourself again Mr.Nothing.