I cannot believe what is happening in my nation’s capital. As I related in an earlier post, our newly elected politicians in Ottawa have taken leave of their common sense and decided to spin Canada into a political crisis right at a crucial time in the world’s history when we need a stable government to give us proper leadership. The nation is upset and hyperbole and vitriole rein supreme on discussion boards and blogs. So, let’s get some things clear up front:
1) This IS NOT a constitutional crisis. Our parliamentary system has made allowances for the creation of coalitions, especially if parliament does not have confidence in any one particular party–which now appears to be the case.
2) This IS a political crisis. Why? First, because Prime Minister Harper failed to maintain the confidence of the house (i.e., support from a majority of Members of Parliament)–something a minority government leader must do. Who advised him to present a financial statement that purposefully poked the opposition parties in the eyes while failing to address the world financial crisis? Now to be fair, he and his party have backed off many of the contentious issues, but unfortunately, the opposition parties have seized the opportunity initially presented and are leading the country down a perilous road.
What is also unfortunate is that we appear to have ‘crossed the Rubicon’. No matter what Harper does now, we are heading down that perilous road to another election; and I fear, an even more divided parliament with no party holding or even coming close to holding a majority of seats.
There will be no winners in this process. The chances of the Conservatives gaining their majority will be crippled. The Liberals have likewise shot themselves in the foot by aligning with the Bloc Quebecois, the party that wants to dissolve the country. They also haven’t helped their cause by appointing their lame duck leader as the proposed PM for the coalition government. Similarly, the New Democrats have not thought this through and may have hurt themselves irrevocably.
The only winner may well be the Bloc, who can point at this crisis as an example why Quebec should not stay in confederation.
So, what does that leave? Confusion for the voter. Who do you support when they are all at fault? I fear a severely divided parliament with parties separated on geographical lines–a situation no good for anyone.
Shame on you Ottawa! We do not deserve this crisis, and you do not deserve our confidence! And I’m afraid that message will be delivered to you in spades in the next election!
So, what’s wrong with that?