Guarding the illusion

by Aaron Wherry

Tom Lukiwski, the government’s deputy House leader, is worried that TV cameras might show you too much of the House of Commons.

Conservative MP Tom Lukiwski suggested on Tuesday that the House of Commons broadcasters avoid using wide shots on days when attendance in the House is meagre, in an effort to keep viewers in the dark on how many MPs are actually present. “It concerns a lot of members, and it frankly doesn’t look good for Parliament,” he told the Procedure and House Affairs committee, which is reviewing the broadcasting guidelines.

It was almost exactly a year ago that I wrote this piece.




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Guarding the illusion

  1. Instead of worrying about how things appear, maybe pols should spend more time worrying about how things are. MPs not showing up regularly for work is pathetic because they are paid to attend Parliament and that’s not asking much. Maybe pols should do what they are paid for and then they would not mind scrutiny. 

    MPs seem to have this peculiar belief that they should never be scrutinized – it is alright for MPs to hector and cajole private citizens but outrageous when attention is paid to them? 

    • While that is true, sitting in the House listening to speeches may not necessarily be the best use of members time.  Most committee meetings overlap with times when the House is also sitting, so just because they aren’t in the House doesn’t mean they are not working.
      Showing up for votes is a different matter, as committee meetings are always interruptded for unscheduled votes, and a great number of votes is scheduled in advance to allow for maximum attendance.

      Before we determine that MPs must be in the House at all times, we should look at what other things they do and decide if we are ok with them not doing them so that they can listen to speeches.

  2. My gosh he sounds like a Liberal. 

  3. Well yesterday they caught a Dipper doing his hair and then falling asleep. Zoomed right in on him.

  4. Yeah, I don’t like it when my boss spots me playing hooky either.

  5. No long shots because it would truly show how empty the whole process actually is.

  6. Surveillance and record keeping of every Canadians internet use is a necessity, but adding new camera angles to public broadcasting of the workplace conduct of elected officials is grossly unfair.

    • Ha! Good point. So we need to remind them- if they’re actually attending and doing their jobs, then they really have nothing to worry about. Right?

  7. No, it doesn’t look good for MPs.

    There’s a difference Tom.

  8. Given his history, I’m surprised Tom Lukiwski doesn’t want the very existence of video capturing technology made illegal.

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