On the other hand, maybe this Parliament thing could be useful


Kady O’Malley reviews how the government failed to amend its own bill.

What makes the government’s eleventh hour effort to amend its own bill even more puzzling, however, is what the speaker didn’t mention, perhaps out of politeness, but more likely because he simply didn’t know: namely, the fact that similar amendments had, in fact, been brought forward at committee, by Liberal MP — and former justice minister — Irwin Cotler, whereupon the Conservative majority on the other side of the table voted down each and every one.


On the other hand, maybe this Parliament thing could be useful

  1. Also from Kady’s article:

    What, if anything, can we learn from all this? Well, for one thing, perhaps even the public safety minister would grudgingly agree that every now and then, it’s probably worth paying attention to clause-by-clause concerns raised by the opposition, especially if the MP raising those concerns is a former justice minister.

    Based on behaviours to date, I’m not very optimistic that the Public Safety Minister will learn this lesson.  Based on behaviours to date, I’m less optimistic that, even if Toews learns this lesson, the lesson will be passed on to others.

  2. Wait a minute, now I know what happened – it wouldn’t actually make any sense to listen to amendments from an MP that is going to resign, leading to a by-election.   ;-)

  3. Painful.  Does parliamentary history show a similar example of dumb-assery in a previous gov’t?

  4. The Chickens of Arrogance are coming home to roost.

    Hey, I have a new name for my band. Score!

    • Need a gtrplyr?

      • Sure, right now all I have are shttyplyrs.

        • snort!

  5. Hayek ~ We shall not grow wiser before we learn that much that we have done was very foolish

    • “Wise men make proverbs, but fools repeat them.”-Samuel Palmer

      • Wise men make laws, but fools repeal them.

  6. How useful the Senate can be.

  7. Well, I suppose those phone calls in Cotler`s riding seems to have served the purpose of waking him up. I really haven`t heard much from him since he was Justice Minister 7 or 8 years ago. he appears to have a new-found interest in his job lately.

    • Hopefully the minister will follow his example.

  8. Kady’s being too generous. It wasn’t that Toews wasn’t paying attention, it’s that no amendment proposed by the opposition will ever be acceptable to these guys. Better to have the changes made by Cons in the Senate so they can claim they’re open to change.

    • A Liberal Senator should move Cotler’s amendments at the earliest possible opportunity.

      • I expect they won’t get a chance. Some ever-so-helpful Conservative
        appointee will be on it right away.

        • Well, hopefully!  Seriously, there are times when you have to put down the partisan banner and pick up the one some occasionally use during the elections–the one that says ‘Here for Canada’ or some such.  The MPs forgot they campaigned under that banner just a few short months ago, so maybe the appointed Senators can get a chance under the banner they didn’t get to use.

          Stupid, stupid stupid.  But not too late.

  9. Is this “a bunch of monkeys typing Shakespeare” moment or party politics Not and Sure and the Harper government

  10. Just saw (on CPAC) Cotler in a scrum:  he spoke at some length about his committee stage amendments and Toews’ report stage amendments and possible options from here on out – it was very refreshing to see someone speaking without notes, without scripted lines, with some ability to directly answer questions.

    Is it really that difficult to get more or even most MPs (from both sides of the house) to behave that way?

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