All fired up and ready to go in Canada?

Sep 18th, 2009 | By | Category: In Brief
New three amigos. Whatever else, they make the current Conservative TV ads about Michael Ignatieff and his evil coalition with the NDP and the BQ seem ... well, what is the right word anyway?

New three amigos. Whatever else, they make the current Conservative TV ads about Michael Ignatieff and his evil coalition with the NDP and the BQ seem ... well, what is the right word anyway?

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 2009. 2:00 PM EDT. As expected the Harper minority government’s ways and means budget motion sailed through the Canadian House of Commons easily this morning, with the support of the Bloc Québécois and the New Democrats. The vote was 224 Yea to 74 Nay, with only Liberals voting against.

As a result, the Vancouver Sun succinctly reports, the “prospect of a fall election has subsided in recent days, but the Conservatives aren’t out of the woods yet … The government is expected to table a ‘report card’ on its stimulus package on Sept. 28, and the Liberals will table a non-confidence motion within days,” in early October.

The Globe and Mail goes into somewhat more detail, for more incurable political junkies:”The NDP has also indicated it is prepared to keep the minority Conservative government afloat until improvements to employment insurance are passed into law. A deal to send Bill C-50, the EI reform legislation, to committee has yet to be reached.” (And see as well: “NDP seeks concessions on EI bill .. Saying legislation falls short of what they had hoped, party wants more help for auto workers.” But: “Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, whose Whitby-Oshawa riding includes many auto workers, said the legislation does help the jobless in that industry. He also said the government is not planning on amending its legislation.”)

“Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff returns to the House of Commons after speaking to reporters in the wake of the minority Conservative government's budget motion passing with the support of the NDP and Bloc Quebecois on Sept. 18, 2009.” (Our thanks here and above to the Globe and Mail.)

“Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff returns to the House of Commons after speaking to reporters in the wake of the minority Conservative government's budget motion passing with the support of the NDP and Bloc Quebecois on Sept. 18, 2009.” (Our thanks here and above to the Globe and Mail.)

Meanwhile (from the Globe and Mail too): “The Liberal opposition day motion to defeat the Conservative government [in early October] will only succeed if it is supported by the NDP and the Bloc. However the government is expected to survive because the NDP is currently not in favour of an election. Bloc Leader Gilles Duceppe has said, however, that he is prepared to vote no-confidence in the Conservative government on issues in which they are failing Quebec.”

So go figure. There won’t be another election any time too soon. But how long can the new somewhat improbable Conservative-New Democrat (or even conservative-socialist?) version of the dance of democracy in Ottawa survive? Who knows? Is there any way there just might be another election before the December holiday season sets in?  Is the current Michael Ignatieff edition of In Search of Canadian Liberalism still all fired up and ready to go, following the new health care reform push of Mr. Ignatieff’s friends in the Obama administration? The only altogether reliable answer at the moment does seem to be: maybe, maybe not.

Meanwhile again, our twittering colleague Frédéric Lehoux from Montréal, who describes himself as “Wannabe political critic, college drop out, working in a call center,” has just drawn our attention to an interesting USA video called “Watching Karen — 2012: The End of the World” (or something like that). And if the world does end in the United States in 2012, as (the semi-attractive?) Karen foretells, on Stephen Harper’s foreign policy principles it will have to end in Canada too. And if that’s what really lies in store for us, only three years away, what difference does it make how many federal elections we have between now and then?

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