Stephen Harper wishes there was more debate in Parliament

If only the opposition weren’t so afraid


Michael Den Tandt flags this video of a speech the Prime Minister gave in London, Ontario last week as a hint at the 2015 campaign.

The speech is worth watching in its entirety, but let’s go to the 19:50 mark, at which point Mr. Harper starts musing aloud about one of the great unwritten stories of his government’s recent time in office.

Now actually, friends, when I talk about how busy we are, I think one of the great unwritten stories over the past couple of years is how much we’ve actually been able to get through Parliament … In fact, we have been able, regularly, to get our policies through Parliament virtually unhindered. Why? Well, it’s certainly not because the opposition supports our policies. We all know that they don’t. Rather it’s because they don’t want to debate what we’re doing because then they would have to talk about their policies. And we know they don’t want to do that.

This is brilliant.

Why has the government been able to pass its legislation through Parliament so easily? Well, it’s not because of the compliant majorities in the House and Senate or the use of omnibus legislation or the habit of using time allocation to limit debate or that move to limit the ability of independent MPs to provoke vote marathons in the House. No, it’s because the New Democrats and Liberals are afraid of debate.

The New Democrats quickly interjected yesterday to note that their members have actually been incredibly talkative over the last three years.

It is at least heartening to hear the Prime Minister championing the idea of parliamentary debate. It also seems a brilliant attempt to turn on its ear the general complaint about this government’s handling of Parliament—never mind the prorogation and omnibus bills and time allocation and the reluctance to cooperate fully with the parliamentary budget officer and that finding of contempt from a few years ago, look at all this legislation we’re passing. And it’s because the opposition doesn’t really want to debate us. Because their policies are crazy.

It’s simultaneously a claim that the government is not afraid of debate and a brag about the government’s efficiency. You might think there would, in a parliamentary system, always be a tension between the ideals of debate and efficiency. But, surrounded by crazy cowards, the Harper government has found perfect balance.


Stephen Harper wishes there was more debate in Parliament

  1. That Harper…..such a kidder.

  2. I have to say Parliament is a lame, dysfunctional mess. If you ever watch it in CPAC you realize just how dysfunctional Ottawa has become. These are not leaders, these are grown up people behaving like barn yard yappy dogs wanting excuses to waste more of our money.

    Not once in 30 years of viewing CPAC have I seen a representative stick up for the taxpayers that make this country work. Not one is more than mouth for efficiency, effectiveness, economy and less bailouts of uncommon good. Just a greed fest on our wallets.

    Parliament is a stage show, a ruse, a farce, PR to make people think they are being represented.

    Yep, I am disenfranchised with Ottawa, only solutions they know are more government, more debt and less for the people who make this country work. For many decades, they say one thing and do another. I think a honest, effective and economical governemtn is impossible, corruption, waste, bureaucracy is unwilling to change, good talk, but short on delivery.

    • But that’s the whole point of his strategy. I’m not a fan of the Can. Action Party, but this guy has it all to rights. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OU6DwLPPhnU
      This is the most articulate and concise description of the Globalist and anti-democratic agenda of the Conservative Party of Canada. The CounterAgenda Project will be releasing several new videos concerning Bill C-23 (The UnFair Elections Act) in the next few weeks.

  3. I see Harper has his sights set on a career in stand-up once he gets booted in 2015…

  4. I think Coyne might be right…Harper isn’t temperamentally cut out for the job of PM. He’s looking more and more like a kind if mad hatter with each new crisis he creates out of thin air. Maybe he ought to take up crack or something to distract him from becoming a full blown deluded $&@&.

    • I seriously am starting to question his sanity.

      They say that insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results. He keeps trotting out policies that failed in the US – why does he expect them to work here?

  5. I didn’t think he could shock me any more, yet here I was, staring at the screen, with my mouth hanging open in total stunned disbelief.

    I know that politics these days is the art of the spin, and the cons have it down pat (including spinnuendo), but this is so far beyond.

  6. War is peace, Freedom is slavery ,Ignorance is strength, Let me clear !

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