Stop heckling, start answering

From Question Period yesterday, Stephane Dion attempts to expand everyone’s mind on this matter of civility.

Mr. Speaker, I did not hear an answer to the question of the $127 million being cut in this budget compared to the previous budget. Can the minister answer the question? Common courtesy in this House also means getting answers. It is only natural for the opposition to protest if it does not get an answer. Can he give us an answer regarding the $127 million in cuts to aboriginal housing?

Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan did not provide such an answer. And so it fell to government House leader Peter Van Loan to explain the Conservative side’s policy on ministerial explanation.

Well, I think we always answer the questions to the best of everybody’s ability at the time with the information they have on hand and I think that hopefully if the tone continues we’ll see more and more clarity. I think that in the House with the composition we have now, with the tone that’s being struck there is likely to be a greater focus on policy and debates, on ideas and I think that will carry through into Question Period. I think we’re already seeing that.

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