ITQ would like to think that you have sailed off over the horizon, Mary Poppins-style, to bring peace and harmony to some other dysfunctional parliamentary family. We’ll leave a candle in the Commons window for you, which will hopefully not be converted into a flaming torch by the angry viillagers you’ve left behind. (So, who picked today in the decorum death pool?)
it’s hard to know whether this is a real attempt to blow up the Canadian political financing system for fun and (eventual electoral) profit, or yet another game of tie-Parliament-to-the-traintracks. But I’m going to go out on a limb and say that
the Conservatives are counting on the NDP eventually coming around to their point of view, on the theory that Jack Layton and company’s almost pathological desire to destroy the Liberal Party forever will override any short-term concern over losing a few million dollars a year.
Which – as Tom Flanagan will, I’m sure, be only too pleased to assure them – the NDP will undoubtedly more than make up in donations from all those orphaned Liberal (and, for that matter, Green) supporters. (Why the NDP would want to take political advice from Tom Flanagan is another, and altogether fascinating question for another time.) So far, the Dippers don’t seem to be buying that argument, but we’ll see if that holds up once the details of whatever the government is proposing are officially released.
We also don’t know exactly how they plan to proceed – I’m fairly sure that abolishing the subsidy would require amending the Canada Elections Act, which means legislation on top of whatever ends up in today’s Ways and Means motion — legislation that, in theory, would have to go to committee – where the combined opposition parties still control a majority, and eventually, the Senate, which tends to take a dim view of slapdash attempts at democratic reform.
Anyway, ITQ will be in the lockup this afternoon – provided we can squeeze into the somewhat cramped quarters of the Railway Room – and will undoubtedly have much more to say later today, but feel free to use this post as an open thread until then.
*New Spirit of Cooperation(tm), of course.