The Fair Elections Act fight returns to the House

The NDP’s latest gambit


The New Democrats have announced that they’ll use an opposition day on Monday to put the following motion before the House.

That it be an instruction to the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs that, during its consideration of Bill C-23, An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act and other Acts and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, the Committee shall: a) hear witnesses from, but not limited to, Elections Canada, political parties as defined under the Canada Elections Act, the Minister of State who introduced the bill, representatives of First Nations, anti-poverty groups, groups representing persons with disabilities, groups representing youth advocates and students, as well as specific groups which have been active in society on elections rules; b) have the power to travel to all regions of Canada, (Atlantic Canada, Quebec, Ontario, Northern Ontario, the Prairies, British Columbia and the North), including downtown urban settings, rural and remote settings, and that the Committee request that this travel take place in March and April 2014; and c) only proceed to clause-by-clause consideration of the Bill after these hearings have been completed, with a goal to commence clause-by-clause consideration on Thursday, May 1, 2014.

This motion largely repeats the motion that NDP MP David Christopherson has tabled with the Procedure and House Affairs committee. And the Conservatives’ unwillingness to go along with said motion is the reason for both Mr. Christopherson’s filibuster of that committee and the NDP’s move to block all committee travel.

Regardless of whether the Conservative motion passes, the NDP would at least force another day of debate in the House with this motion (and of course, if the motion is defeated, New Democrats would have another chance to moan about an opportunity to hear from Canadians has again been blocked.)

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The Fair Elections Act fight returns to the House

  1. Why does the NDP keep announcing ahead of time what they’re going to talk about on opposition day?
    Every time they do, the government cancels it.
    Why not just spring it on the government?
    I sense this is more about PR than real action.

    • Of course it is. Everything in parliament is PR.

      When you have successive governments that won’t consider any advice, amendments or ideas other than what has been dreamed up in the PMO that means everything, including voting, is for show.

      What is it you consider “action” by an Opposition Party anyway?

  2. Good. I hope somebody on the Conservative side is paying attention to this.

    • Dead people overwelmingly vote Democrat!

    • Are you saying that you hope that the Tories are getting some good election rigging tips from Texas, or that they should make sure to outlaw such tactics in Canada? ;-)

      Or, are you wondering when the Tories are finally going to get around to cleaning up the state of affairs in Texas? :-)

  3. The NDP were griping for months that this bill hadn’t been tabled. Now that it has been, they’re doing everything to delay it’s passing. Why am I not surprised?

    • It’s called debate, something Harperites don’t understand.

    • The NDP may have been griping about the Tories not tabling any election reform legislation, but nobody’s been griping for months about THIS bill not being tabled. Nobody had any idea about THIS bill until the beginning of the month. For all the NDP knew, this bill didn’t even exist before Groundhog Day.

      Complaining that the government is dragging it’s feet on electoral reform is not a free pass for the government to quickly pass whatever idiocy they decide to finally put forward. It’s entirely consistent to complain that the government’s not doing anything, and then when they finally do something, to complain that they’re doing the wrong thing.

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