Further reading


Nancy Macdonald with a short history of coalition governments.


Further reading

  1. Pierre Poilievre was on my TV today saying that Harper’s 2004 letter never contained the word “coalition”, and he’s right.

    What I haven’t heard anyone ask yet though is what were the “options” that the three party leaders were contemplating, and presumably “closely consultating” about?

    September 9, 2004

    Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson,
    C.C., C.M.M., C.O.M., C.D.
    Governor General
    Rideau Hall
    1 Sussex Drive
    Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A1


    As leaders of the opposition parties, we are well aware that, given the Liberal minority government, you could be asked by the Prime Minister to dissolve the 38th Parliament at any time should the House of Commons fail to support some part of the government’s program.

    We respectfully point out that the opposition parties, who together constitute a majority in the House, have been in close consultation. We believe that, should a request for dissolution arise this should give you cause, as constitutional practice has determined, to consult the opposition leaders and consider all of your options before exercising your constitutional authority.

    Your attention to this matter is appreciated.


    Hon. Stephen Harper, P.C., M.P.
    Leader of the Opposition
    Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada

    Gilles Duceppe, M.P.
    Leader of the Bloc Quebecois

    Jack Layton, M.P.
    Leader of the New Democratic Party

  2. I believe one of the options was a picnic on the Hill lawn.

  3. Saying “whoa !” and seeking political asylum in Slovenia ?

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