The Bloc so moves -

The Bloc so moves


The motion of the Bloc Quebecois that will be debated in the House this Thursday.

“That this Chamber condemns the government’s decision to unilaterally extend the Canadian mission in Afghanistan until 2014, which breaks two promises to the people, including the one made in this Chamber May 10 2006 and reiterated in the Speech from the Throne of 2007 to submit all military deployments to a vote by Parliament, and the one made January 6 2010 to turn the mission in Afghanistan into a strictly civilian mission after 2011, with no military presence other than that necessary for the protection of the embassy.”


The Bloc so moves

  1. Seriously, does the Bloc expect some Liberals to support this motion?

    “Whether there's a parliamentary resolution is not a matter of law (or even custom) but a choice of the government. In the current circumstance I fully understand the government's decision.”–Bob Rae

  2. So now the Dippers and the Bloc have a forum to spout their left wing anti war rhetoric and still lose the resolution. In the meantime it will be fun to see how badly the Libs are divided on the extension. This will not be good news for Ignatieff. Good thing Harper only needs a couple of votes to defeat the resolution.

  3. Yes, silly them. They took Harper's word for something.

  4. "Some Liberals" just might support this motion. What remains to be seen is whether those Liberals will support the motion in the House of Commons where it matters. This will be a risky test of Ignatieff's leadership over his caucus. To whip, or not to whip. Actually, that's not exactly the question: given past events, will it be clear to all Liberal MPs that he is whipping the vote, if indeed he is?

  5. Hope that it is a free vote.

    Given the division amongst Canadian's I would find it very suspect if all Conservatives support the extension of the mission.

    In a free vote, will they stand behind the 2006, 2007 or 2010 position of thier party.

    Should be interesting.

  6. Ignatieff should probably flex his muscles and whip the vote as a show of leadership. On the other hand, it's possible that the discord within the Liberal caucus is so serious that Ignatieff doesn't want to squander any more goodwill.

  7. If it is a free vote and the libs are divided and the cons stick together no doubt we'll have to listen to endless boring monologues about how tough and disciplined Harper is and how weak and vascillating Ignatieff is – forgotten will be the political courage and principle it took for Ignatieff/Rae to attempt to put the countries interests before their parties.

  8. I hear a lot about the divisions within the Liberal ranks on this, but it's all "anonymous senior Liberal" this and "abstract conjecture" that.

    How many Liberals do you suppose would vote for this motion if a free vote were held?

  9. I will guess zero VOTES. But I do not think that the actual support is nil. I wonder how many will be holding their noses as their vote gets whipped. I wonder if any will find a reason to be out of town that day. I wonder if any will defy the leader's whip. I even wonder at this stage whether that whip will get cracked.

  10. Yeah, Gardner's a little too sane for the NP. The Conservatives aren't exactly whipped, they are just afraid they will go to hell if they don't obey Harper.

  11. Damn Bloc, will they stop at nothing to destroy this glorious nation?

  12. Why on earth should Ignatieff whip the vote? Ignatieff thinks the mission as Harper has outlined it is the right thing to do. I am sure Ignatieff will support the government on this vote. But why should he compel other Liberals to do so? Harper has already said, I believe, that any such motion isn't binding on the government. So however the vote turns out won't change the government's mind, right? So in the spirit of more power to MPs (which many of us are on about) Ignatieff would be right to limit whipped votes as much as possible. Surely, a vote where the outcome has no relation to what happens next is a place to allow a free vote.

  13. All the world's a stage. There's a lot of Hollywood on this one. Quick while the irons hot

  14. This isn't a deep ideological issue that would divide a party, like gun control or abortion. I doubt a free vote would ruffle that many feathers within the Liberal Party. Of course, no matter what happens, Harper will claim otherwise.

  15. Dying in Afghanistan isn't a big issue??

    Libs are furious with Iggy and Rae over this.

  16. Some Libs are furious with the decision – others support it.

    I would imagine that the differing opinions in caucus would be reflective of the broader national sentiments as they relate to this very polorizing issue.

  17. I don't find much to fault in Gardener's piece [ like him myself] but it doesn't change the fact that it makes sense to train the Afghans to defend themselves – perhps this is all we should have been doing. As Gardener says the bill for this war is insane and the money could accomplish much good elsewhere. But even he admits Pakistan must not fall into radical hands – what he doesn't say is how this might be accomplished. And keep in mind Afghans overwhelmingly [ according to the polls] want us to remain. Much harm has been done in Afghanistan in the name of various good causes, but i don't see as how just packing up and leaving now will help either.

  18. Go or stay ten years ago was a huge issue, as it would be today. There's definitely room for difference between "go" and "leave 1/3 who won't go near fighting unless Harper lies again", but I imagine the ultimate passions are relatively diluted.

  19. No, most are furious with it….and passions haven't been diluted.

    They may end up being whipped and having to vote for it….but we're talking a very unhappy caucus.

  20. I fear that the longer we are there the worse it will get. There will be no good
    end to this.
    I was alive and kicking through the Viet Nam era. Afghanistan is not Viet Nam,
    but the rhetoric around it is distressingly similar.

  21. Defend themselves against what??

    WE are the invaders and occupiers.

    PS…according to the polls, most Afghans have never heard of 911, and have no idea why foreigners are tramping through their country killing everyone.

  22. And you know this how?

  23. Projection, it seems.

  24. How many Liberals would vote for this motion if it were a free vote?

    I would have thought not very many, but I think Emily would have me believe that every single Liberal MP except for Ignatieff and Rae would support this motion. Does anyone have a ball park figure that's based on something?

  25. Does this vote make any difference? Is the vote binding? Is it a confidence motion?

    Why doesn't the Bloc actually submit a vote to determine whether or not the House wants to extend the 2011 deadline to a non-combat role? What difference will it make if the Chamber "condemns" the government's decision?

    It seems the Bloc is just playing games here, and trying to cause problems for the Liberals.

  26. My guess is some will stay home, but enough will show up to help defeat the motion. Certainly more Liberals than just Rae and Iggy support a non-combat role in Afstan. And they only need about a dozen (assuming all Tories show up and vote against it) to defeat it.

  27. Jenn, it looks like the vote will be whipped:

    The Bloc Québecois will try to put the spotlight on Michael Ignatieff's discomfort over the extension to the Afghan mission Thursday by bringing down an opposition day motion that calls on the House to condemn the move, on the basis that it breaks the promise made to Canadians that it would become a strictly civilian commitment after 2011.

    Mr. Ignatieff disagrees with that notion and is committed to supporting the Conservatives if it comes to a vote, which it is likely to do next Tuesday. However, many members of the Liberal caucus are at odds with the leader – precisely how many is difficult to judge but discontent was widespread at caucus last week, as the National Post reported.

    It seems though, that resistance to the leader's position is futile. The Opposition Leader's Office has made clear that opposition day motions are treated just like government business, in that the caucus takes a position and votes accordingly.

    “I don't think we'll depart from that here,” said a senior staffer in the Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition. “While it tries to dress it up, obviously the motion is a rejection of a training role we support, so, especially after the Bloc joined the Conservatives in voting down our motion on the F-35s last night, I think it's safe to say we're not going to stand with the Bloc on this one.”

  28. That is a stupid move on Ignatieff's part, if true.

  29. You want the vote to actually mean something?

    Since when are playing games and causing problems for your political opponents insufficient reasons to hold a vote?