The Senate’s proposed amendments to election bill are a facade.

The committee in the Senate designed to look at the (un)Fair Elections Act – Bill C-23 – tried to come across as dramatically wanting to amend this bill….it came up with 9 proposed amendments that were unanimously agreed to. That got initial press coverage as saying the Conservative-dominated Senate was being independent and defying the Conservative government. However, when one took a look at the minority report from the Independent/Liberal caucus that the Conservatives would not sign on to (such as continuing to allow vouching, allowing Elections Canada to encourage voter participation etc) and more importantly, when Pierre Poliviere came out and welcomed/praised the amendments, one immediately smelled a rat.



Conservative logic: Promoting high turnout/ensuring fair election is a conflict?

That’s what Conservative Senator Linda Frum seems to think: (for lack of a better term). Some twitter tweets give her position quite clearly:

“Elections Canada role is to administer fair elections. Not to motivate. Not to induce. More integrity when mission is clear cut.”

and this, as a reply to an incredulous Bruce Anderson wanting a followup to reading this:

“Elections Canada should not have a vested interest in recording a high voter turnout. That’s a conflict”

The ONLY way you get to that conclusion for Senator Frum, and I presume other Conservatives like Harper and Poilievre, who obviously feel the same way -otherwise they’d never have stuck this provision [...]


A victory for federalism and tolerance in Quebec..

…and 2 free dinners won from political bets for me from political colleagues (one on a majority, the 2nd on the number of seats won) All in all, a great night last night.

Postscript: My 1 won bet was with Jim Calder, blogger at the Progressive Right, and one of my helpers at Progressive Bloggers when we go on political convention road trips to help get pictures up at the site. I’m sure we’ll be turning this (as we did last October, when I soundly beat him on a Tim Hudak bet) into an informal blogger/political social media folks get together – likely in Toronto, and I’m leaning towards May. [...]


You are reading the blog of a potentially disenfranchised voter….

…if Bill C23 passes in it’s current form. I may be one of those Canadians (potentially 4 million of us, according to Canadian election law experts) who may not be allowed to vote, if Bill C23 passes in its current unaltered form. Why is that?: Well, I don’t have a Driver’s License (by choice), and my other government issued ID’s do not include my current address, and vouching (which I’ve never had to use before, I might add) is also going to be removed.

This “39 pieces of ID is more then reasonable” argument, that Democratic Reform Minister Pierre Poilievre an his Conservative Party members trots out all the [...]


I have faith in Quebec voters….

… to recognize the dog-whistles coming out of the PQ for what they are.. and not allow wedge politics and narrow-mindedness to rule the day. The PQ has fallen into out and out panic mode, accusing the Liberal leader Couillard of more or less abandoning Quebecois, merely because he supports bilingualism.. and I don’t need to repeat the ridiculousness coming out of their various members over the Values Charter. A slight majority of francophone voters may support it, but I think they got scared off when the extreme separatist elements (see Pierre-Karl Peladeau – the head of Quebecor Media – better known as the owners of the rabid Sun Newspapers [...]


A Pool/Poll On Number Of “Fair Elections Act” amendments/changes

If you’ve followed the reaction to the “Fair Elections Act”, you’ll note there’s not a lot of support for this act as it stands. It’s getting rightly lambasted by newspaper editorials and columnists across this country, as well as academics and so forth.

That said, I’d be willing to bet the Conservatives aren’t going to do much, if anything, in the way of amendments/changes that have been suggested. They know exactly what this new act is going to do. It’s basically an attempt to tilt the playing field (or the voting field) towards them, (and also a way to try and neuter Elections Canada, who they dislike)

I’m going to [...]


Good luck to Dan Fox running for TO City Council (Ward 24) in Willowdale.

I don’t often do links to municipal candidates, particularly City of Toronto ones, despite the amusing circus that occasionally provides, but I’m making an exception for Dan Fox, who is an active Liberal in federal politics, but has decided to go a different route and will try to get elected to TO City Council in Ward 24:

I think that the Toronto City Council has put sound bites and politics ahead of the need of the people of Toronto. Budget gimmicks have replaced building and maintaining a healthy city infrastructure. Photo opportunities have a higher priority than fiscal responsibility. Immediate gratification has replaced long-term vision and planning. It’s time to [...]


A neat site to track Liberal nominees in ridings across Canada: is a pretty neat, fairly new site I was made aware of, and it’s very ambitious:

This website is intended to be a database for Liberals and Liberal supporters to find the aspiring candidates in their ridings, and for aspiring candidates to contact and work together in building this new chapter of the Liberal Party of Canada and, we hope, the next chapter of Canada itself.

You can pick out each province and find ridings and see if anyone has declared to be running for the nomination in that riding. You’ll note that there are lots of gaps in the number of ridings, particularly in provinces outside of Ontario [...]


The only progressive in the TO Mayor race is Olivia Chow

Municipal politics are an interesting political arena. You have much more of a political ideological mix here, which you don’t necessarily have for the federal or provincial arenas. So it is for the Toronto Mayor race.

All the political candidates lean right-of-centre, with the exception of one candidate; that would be Olivia Chow, ex-NDP MP of Toronto’s Trinity-Spadina riding, and of course, the widow and wife of Jack Layton, former NDP leader. From where I sit, the choice for political progressives (which includes left of centre “liberal” Liberals) is obvious; Olivia Chow should be the choice of those voters; as there is no one else in this bunch that [...]


Disappointment with the Ontario Liberal Party lack of social media communication

The OLP has a convention next week, if you weren’t aware. It’s their annual general meeting – the one that was originally going to be held in London, but got moved to Toronto due to speculated Spring Election concerns.

Several bloggers (myself included) of the Liberal persuasion (Ontario or Federal) have been inquiring for awhile since last year before Christmas to some of our contacts within the OLP hierarchy about the possibility of being present at this to live-blog or live-tweet it or social media it in general.. you get the idea – as we did for the OLP’s leadership convention. We’ve had various contacts who’ve told us they’ve supported [...]

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