The Backbench Top Ten

And now the debut of a new weekly feature here at Beyond the Commons: a wholly arbitrary ranking of the ten most worthy, or at least entertaining, MPs, excluding the Prime Minister, cabinet members and party leaders. A celebration of all that is great and ridiculous about the House of Commons. Exact criteria will take shape over time, points for now will be awarded on general competence and ability to amuse me.

1. Daniel Paille
A loud, confident, fast-talking pain in the rear who seems destined to make Stephen Harper miserable. The breakout star of Parliament’s first week-and-a-half back. Fine beard too.
2. Dominic LeBlanc
Somehow the man who once asked the Speaker whether another member’s wig counted as a prop is also the Liberal side’s most serious-sounding prosecutor. Vaguely Clintonian.
3. Thomas Mulcair
Has taken to adopting funny voices to impersonate Conservatives when asking questions during QP. Wonderfully patronizing, the very model of self-righteousness. Once-impressive beard though has been surpassed by Paille’s.
4.  Joe Comartin
Managed to comment publicly about the case of Rahim Jaffer without embarrassing himself.
5. Derek Lee
The man who may ultimately push Parliament all in.
6. Stephen Woodworth
His Twitter feed is a gift to democracy.
7. Maxime Bernier
Never mind his views on climate change, check out this white suit.
8. Wayne Easter
Easter’s hectoring of the government side over the matter of Helena Guergis’ tantrum compelled John Baird to stand and solemnly say he found Easter’s tone “rather regrettable.” Arguably the funniest thing John Baird has ever said in public.
9. Bob Rae
Turns out that sometimes there’s some value in listening to the government’s answers and adjusting your approach accordingly. The rare human being who can speak in public without reading.
10. Tilly O’Neill-Gordon

Stood not once, but twice this week and did her best to sound genuinely concerned as she asked the Fisheries Minister how the government was going to protect the sealing industry from a Liberal senator. Tape of this will probably be included in future government backbencher orientation kits.