More recently the Prime Minister has said that the government needs to change its agenda as the economy moves into recovery. In a January 11th interview with the Business News Network, Harper said that financial markets are concerned with stability and that minority governments are sources of instability. Therefore, proroguing helps dodge instability. This is a tenuous assertion at best.
Even Tories find this motive lacks credibility. Former Harper chief of staff and political scientist Tom Flanagan said: “I think investors look at market fundamentals, they don’t look at the antics of politicians.”
Whether they are Conservative, Liberal, NDP or Green Party voters, Canadians ought to consider this: the Prime Minister serves at the pleasure of the people as represented in Parliament—not the reverse. The Government has the executive power to make spending choices, through the budget, through appointments and through the daily executive decisions made by its Ministers. This power is properly checked by the opposition parties’ ability to participate in Parliamentary Committees, make recommendations and take the Government to task during Question Period.
Even if you think Question Period is a circus, these procedures form part of the system we have put in place as a bulwark against single-party rule. The public and its elected representatives would do well to have a healthy dose of skepticism and a watchful eye on the state of our democracy.
This prorogation seems to have struck a nerve for some. At press time, 180, 000 people had joined a Facebook group called “Canadians Against Proroguing Parliament”. Click here to see this group.
Take a moment to let us know what you think of this development by answering our prorogation poll. If you disagree with the move and want your elected representatives to go back to work, or if you have thoughts on this issue, we encourage you to contact your Federal Member of Parliament, as well the Prime Minister and give them a piece of your mind. As always, an easy and convenient way to do this is by using CARP E-Voice.