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On picking and choosing parliamentary convention.

I saw this over at Accidental Deliberations this morning over where Steve Janke is apparently advocating that the Liberals be stripped of their Official Opposition title as a party by the Governor-General and the title handed to the NDP, because according to Steve’s logic, since they abstained from the Throne Speech, they aren’t really providing an effective opposition. The Jurist over at AC is surprised no Liberal bloggers have come forth to criticize his proposal. I’ll say it’s probably because it’s such a dumb proposal, no one at Liberal blogging land really feels it necessary to go after. Since I’ve got nothing better to do, I’ll be the first, if only to have a Liberal-aligned blogger on the record.

First, I didn’t see this post at his site back in 2005 advocating the same thing be done to a Conservative Party led by Mr Harper who also abstained on the Paul Martin-led Throne Speech. Steve wasn’t apparently paying attention that particular session of Parliament. (UPDATE: I’m informed by one prominent Tory supporter that actually, Harper abstained on the Budget, not the Throne Speech, which doesn’t change the point. In fact, it really makes Janke’s idea even worse; since the Budget is a much more relevant thing to oppose then the Throne Speech).

Second, I’ll repeat what I said at Jurist’s comment section; I just love how Conservatives like Janke advocate the use of power if it benefits their position or their party. Apparently an appointed GG using powers that are not used at all anymore for precisely that reason is ok with Steve for overriding all parliamentary convention, if it can be used as a partisan device to attack the Liberals with.

But, in a future scenario, if Madame Jean is in a position to use her her powers that would hurt Harper – say refuse Harper’s request to dissolve the House and instead asks the next largest party (that being the Liberals) to form the government – you can bet Janke will be leading the hue and cry about the draconian use of the GG’s unelected, undemocratic powers.

Why not allow the Senate with its Liberal majority to offer “sober second thought”, without all the grumblings from Blogging Toryland and Conservatives in general of it being appointed, while we’re at it, Steve? And why, for that matter, in your scenario are you directly bypassing the BQ – the 3rd largest party in the House, and also the Official Opposition at one time in Parliament not so long ago – and appointing the NDP as the standard-bearer?

I’ve often criticized Steve’s “investigations” as being worthless and chasing after windmills Don Quixote style, but after seeing posts/proposals like this, maybe he should stick to his investigations and leave the proposals for someone else to do. (although his ideological companion, Stephen Taylor isn’t doing much better, either. He’s proposing that Harper ignore or rebuke the Liberals and refuse to answer their questions in QP, which as the Jurist points out, they already do with every opposition party’s questions that are politically inconvenient, never mind the Liberals. For that matter, they already employ that tactic with the media, so it’s nothing new, Steve #2).

UPDATE: Mr Taylor The Blogging Tories are apparently on a roll today for statements that make you raise your eyebrows, even more so then Janke. As Red Tory points out, they’re also distorting poll numbers at their homepage.

UPDATE 2: Stephen Taylor informs Red Tory he’s taken the banner down. Now its replaced with the claim that the BT Community is home to the “Fastest Growing Political Forums in Canada”. They might be, they might not. I’m sure Mr. Taylor has documented evidence to back that claim up, right Steve? 😉

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