A Canadian's perspective on domestic and international issues. Independent coverage of Canadian federal, provincial and municipal elections and anything of interest in Canada.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Vancouver Sun biased in favour of Harper

A recent editorial from the editors of the Vancouver Sun, on the current kafluffle in Ottawa, suggests that Canadian voters gave Mr. Dion the brush off in the last election.
That's not quite true. What Canadians did was make it real clear to Mr. Harper that the Canadian people are not prepared to give him a majority, and want the checks and balances a minority provides.
If Mr. Harper isn't willing to operate as a minority leader, make concessions and cooperate, then perhaps it is time the other guys get a chance before we're thrown into another election.
The Sun editorial also suggested Mr. Dion he should give his "head a shake" for proposing a coalition
I think it is the editorial staff at the Sun who need to give their heads a shake.
One of two things is happening. Either Stephen Harper does not understand how the parliamentary system within a constitutional democracy works, or he is trying to pull the wool over the average Canadians eyes.
In the parliamentary system if the majority of parliament have lost confidence in the governing minority, they are obligated to do one of two things, either force an election, or form a coalition to govern in place of the toppled minority.
The Governor General has an obligation to ensure workable government. After two dysfunctional minorities in a row, the option of asking the opposition to form a coalition is well within her mandate.
More people voted against Mr. Harper then for him, in fact, the majority did! That makes his ongoing argument, supported by the Sun Editorial Board and other mainstream media, that the people selected him to be Prime Minister, or that the people gave him an expanded mandate (because he picked up a few extra seats), pure nonsense.
The majority of Canadian voters selected the opposition, so if the opposition can form a coalition, then it is they who should govern. This not a crisis! It happens in parliamentary systems everywhere. In fact, parliamentary systems are designed with minority rule and coalitions in mind.

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