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In-and-out and veiled voting: It’s an irony ouroborous


 

At the risk of turning ITQ into Inside the Canada Elections Act, I should point out that the lack of a forcible deveiling provision is actually almost entirely thanks to the government’s anti-in and out investigation filibustering at Procedure and House Affairs.

Conservatives on the committee spent months stonewalling an opposition motion to look into the party’s advertising expenses during the last election, which eventually resulted in the committee itself lapsing into a procedural coma. It hasn’t held a meeting since last spring. In fact, at the moment, it doesn’t even have a chair, which is why Bill C-6 (visual identification of voters) – next on the legislative to-do list – has been stuck in a parliamentary oubliette since last November.

For the record, both the NDP and the Liberals argued against the bill during first reading debate last fall, although it will still pass easily with the support of the Bloc Quebecois. Still, at least the other two opposition parties seem to have learned something from the veiled voting debacle.

UPDATE: In writing about C-6 at the time it was introduced, Colleague Selley, macleans.ca’s resident veiledvotingologist, pointed out that actually, the bill once again fails to address the ostensible problem (which, by the way, would be voter fraud, not ‘voting while female and Muslim’): The rules still allow the use of two pieces of non-photo identification, provided that the voter also shows one’s face, thus proving that one is a human, but not the human identified by the documents.


 

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