What it all means - Macleans.ca
 

What it all means


 

Elly Alboim reviews what we might’ve learned and projects forward.

Although the polarization among the electorate is quite clear, so is the mood for a change in behaviour. A four year majority probably means a more measured and considered pace in Parliament. It also desensitizes in a fundamental way some of the partisan cockpits. Committees will no longer be paralyzed by intense partisanship and no longer be able to investigate anything Opposition members choose to be of political advantage … And finally, and most importantly, the constant brinkmanship over votes of non-confidence will be gone. There will be no more weekly watches for the possibility that the government might fall.

Over all, Canadians will hear much more about what the government does rather than about the partisan processes and overheated rhetoric of parliament – at least for a long while.


 

What it all means

  1. Great observations by Ely Alboim. Since a lot of people who are reading this are political junkies, I think this point is worth repeating:

    The “news” of the campaign mattered much less than media anticipated.There were allegations, embarrassments and gaffes that made up the “news” of the campaign. On the whole, there were probably more of them than in the normal campaign. None of them appeared to stick or have much impact. Yet again, the disconnect between what media think germane in an election campaign and what the electorate does is quite wide.

    • Ely Alboim is rapidly becomnig my favourite observer of Canadian politics.

      A few weeks ago he was a guest on Steve Paikin/TVO’s fabulous The Agenda, and then I caought him again a few days ago on CPAC (on a CPAC/Macleans joint venture) – again, very insightful.

      More, please!!

  2. A good part of what it means is even less transparency. We know that this government’s instincts are highly secretive and authoritarian. No real debate will occur in public–in committee or in the House. These places will merely form a part of the marketing strategy, along with tens of millions of dollars spent on quasi-partisan advertising courtesy of the Canadian tax-payer.

  3. I like this guy – just simple, common sense statements. He also answers my question from the CPAC/Macleans forum where he mentioned changes to committees. They are not really changing, it is just the fact a majority government changes the dynamics. This is a good thing.

    “Committees will no longer be paralyzed by intense partisanship and no longer be able to investigate anything Opposition members choose to be of political advantage … And finally, and most importantly, the constant brinkmanship over votes of non-confidence will be gone.”


  4. Over all, Canadians will hear much more about what the government does rather than about the partisan processes and overheated rhetoric of parliament – at least for a long while.

    Can we please? Pretty please?

  5. “…Committees will no longer be paralyzed by intense partisanship and no longer be able to investigate anything Opposition members choose to be of political advantage…”

    Logically though, this means that the Opposition members will also be unable to follow the stink to its source. I’m not sure that’s a real plus. Minorities might be messy, but they also keep the government in check.

    In fact, during the past five years, anything that DID pass, was generally passed by a huge majority, often 66% or more of the population being represented in cases where the CPC and LPC voted together.

    Now all bills and such will pass with less than 40% representation. Not an improvement in my mind.

    All a majority means in our system is that the making of decisions are hidden from the public, and given the CPC’s record on providing information, this isn’t really a debatable point.

  6. “…Canadians will hear much more about what the government does rather than about the partisan processes and overheated rhetoric of parliament…”

    Again, a load of crap. Canadians will now hear what the government wants them to hear, and nothing more. We’re back to surface pretense that no one can question.

    As it was the opposition couldn’t get the government to release files it not only had a right to see, but in some cases an operational requirement to see. If you can’t get the government to give you cost estimates when in minority, what the heck do you think is going to happen when they have a majority?

    Bloody cheerleaders drive me crazy.

    • Hey – that is going to be Kevin Page’s job!!! We did not have a PBO when the Libs had a majority. The NDP were just as disgusted as the Conservatives with the “cabinet confidence” claims.

      • But Kevin Page hasn’t been getting the documentation, either.

        • Besides, how long does anyone think he’ll be around for now?

          Or maybe he’ll still be there, to avoid the blowback, but his budget won’t cover breakfast at MacDonalds?

          In any case I expect his Office to be neutered within the next 18 months.