Making a farce of Parliament

Between 2pm and 3pm this afternoon in the House, four Conservative MPs—Phil McColeman, Peter Kent, Kellie Leitch and Denis Lebel—combined to make nine references to a “carbon tax.” Mr. McColeman did so during a members’ statement. Mr. Kent did so in response to a friendly Conservative MP’s question about government efforts to clean up contaminated sits. Kellie Leitch did so twice in response to Liberal questions about employment insurance policy. Mr. Lebel did so twice in responding to NDP questions about airport fees.

John Baird also referred to cap-and-trade as a “tax” while responding to a friendly Conservative question about trade policy. (Michelle Rempel oddly failed to use the phrase “carbon tax,” but still accused the NDP of advocating for a “carbon pricing scheme.”)

Yesterday, six Conservative MPs managed to use the phrase “carbon tax.” The day before that it was another half dozen. With one mention yesterday and two today, Ms. Leitch has now used 10 separate interventions to reference the phrase, the most of any Conservative over the last 14 sitting days. With the additions of Messrs McColeman, Kent and Lebel, I count 60 Conservative MPs who have used the phrase at least once in the House.

Here again is the rough guide to the Conservatives’ carbon tax farce. Presumably the Ottawa Citizen editorial board’s question of a few weeks ago still stands.