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Senate reform

Here’s a wonkish-type post from me today on Senate reform, since there’s another poll out today (h/t Harperbizarro)that shows many Canadians in favour of an elected Senate.

In my opinion, If you’re going to do reform, Harper’s piecemeal way isn’t the way to go (it may not even be constitutionally legal); you need to open the Constitution and hammer out an agreement with the provinces. It’s more difficult to do it that way, but if you’re serious about it and not just trying to use it as a wedge issue for stirring up your supporters, then that’s the way you do it. If you fail, you drop it and […]

All hail the patronage king!

This is a different video take on the patronage king, Stephen Harper. It’s been promoted elsewhere on other blogs, but it still amused me enough that I thought I’d add it here as well.

I support (real) Senate reform.

It’s been rather amusing pointing out the hypocrisy that Harper has engaged in with all these crony appointments to the Senate in recent days and comparing them to his past statements, but let me say that I also want to mirror Jeff’s blogpost in saying that if Harper were actually to propose real Senate reform, I’d go along with that. What is “real Senate reform”, you might ask? Jeff’s definition will do nicely:

..real and meaningful Senate reform means a constitutional amendment. It means the amending formula. It means sitting down with the provinces and negotiating regional representation, and elections, and term limits, and the balance of powers between House […]

I’m not losing sleep over this

In brief, and just to follow up on Impolitical’s post this AM, there are many things I worry about with regards to Liberal election strategy and allowing Harper to continue being PM of this country, but “losing the Senate” because of a raft of patronage appointments by this PM isn’t one of those worries.

I see the only requirement to be a Harper Senator is blind loyalty to the King of Patronage.

Check out the interview that ex-hockey coach, current hockey analyst, and newly appointed Conservative Senator Jacques Demers gave to the Globe:

Mr. Demers… was a well-known face among the new crop of senators. He said he will continue working as a hockey analyst and put his mind to his new job.

“I’ve just been named a senator here, and I’m going to have to start following [federal politics],” he said in an interview.

I’m not listing this to attack Jacques: I applaud him for his honesty about his not having followed federal politics up to this point.

It reflects worse on Harper for picking him then it does Jacques for […]

Gary Doer: a good pick for US Ambassador, but an obvious Harper attempt to deflect yesterday's patronage binge

So, I’m going to get on here today and actually give Harper credit for picking Gary Doer, the just-resigned ex-NDP premier of Manitoba, to be the new ambassador to the US. He’s someone who’ll be more ideologically in tune with President Obama then current Canadian ambassador Michael Wilson is (who probably is feeling a bit uncomfortable down there after Conservative officials leaked to the US press about “Obama doesn’t really believe in vetoing Free trade” stuff that occurred in the Democratic primaries and helped contribute to an Obama defeat in Ohio), and since he’s an ex-premier, he’ll probably be used to try and go at this “Buy American” legislation that’s […]

Gritgirl on the Harper Senate appointments.

Gritgirl strikes on the Harpocrisy of these new Conservative Senate appointments – bringing the total to 27 in less then a calendar year.

Look, I’ll be the first to admit the Liberals aren’t exactly pious when it comes to lecturing other party’s on their PM making patronage appointments to the Senate. The difference is that Harper has said ad nauseum the past 13 years he would never do this. Yet, he’s now made 27 Senate appointments of his Conservative cronies in less then a year. As Gritgirl points out, this is the LARGEST ever amount of appointments in a single year by any Canadian Prime Minister.

[…]

Tidbit Thursday - Harper destroys the Senate to save it, and new Ekos poll confirms dead heat.

A new Ekos poll come out in line with Decima’s results, making me again question Ipsos Reid’s poll as well as the NDP bloggers jumping all over that one result and declaring the end of Liberalism. Also, Harper apparently is destroying the Senate (and his past pious pronouncements on Senate Reform) to save the Senate, or something… […]

..And the winner for most bizarre statement in 2008 from an anonymous Conservative staffer is…

…this one:

“Suffice it to say that my boss, like most ministers, is probably shocked by the number of people emailing him to patriotically offer their service to their country by deigning to accept a Senate seat,” said one political staffer.

So, there you have it. In Conservative-land, if you’re questioning human rights abuses in Afghanistan by their security forces with prisoners that we’re handing over to them, you get attacked as being allies of the Taliban. However, if you send in a request to become a Canadian Senator in order to help Harper and the Conservatives stack the Senate with their cronies, you are a patriotic Canadian doing your […]

I endorse Mike Duffy going to the Senate as well.

So courtesy of Mr Bowie, we find out that Stephen Taylor, mastermind of the Blogging Tories, has endorsed the Duffster getting a Senate seat appointment – courtesy of Mr Harper’s “I must destroy the Senate (and my principles) to save it (and them)” manoeuvrer, when he does his rumoured 18 Senate appointments sometime in the next month.

I actually will join Stephen in also endorsing Duffy getting a Senate seat, because it means the show Duffy hosts might actually get a host/hostess whose Conservative biases are a tad less evident. However, I’m not sure Jane Taber (who I’d guess would be first in the running to replace Duffy if his […]

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