Standing up for Canadians. Oh, wait, no. The opposite. - Macleans.ca

Standing up for Canadians. Oh, wait, no. The opposite.

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Well, that was interesting. The government just tried to shut down debate in the House of Commons, which, oddly enough, may be about to deal with Pat Martin’s motion to remove lawsuits as a personal interest from the members’ Code of Conduct. Hey, that strategy has worked so well at Procedure and House Affairs, and Justice – why not take it to the next logical step, and stop the House itself from meeting?

Luckily (or unluckily, depending on which side of the aisle you sit), the motion was handily defeated by a united opposition – including Paul Martin, I should point out. That doesn’t, however, mean that the Tories are out of procedural tricks. If a party really has its knickers in a twist and wants to bring business of the House to a screaming halt, it can force a vote on every routine item of business. Why the Prime Minister, who was such a staunch believer in the supremacy of Parliament during his years in opposition, would want to do something like that is beyond me, but I find myself endlessly surprised by the twists and turns of life on the Hill.