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Another Conservative uses the Olympics as an excuse for prorogation

This time, it’s Stockwell Day’s turn to try to pass this off to his constituents and the rest of the country as a valid reason.

I would really like to know which adviser to the government thought that using the Olympics as a reason excuse for justifying prorogation was a great idea. It immediately draws attention to the fact that this government is on an unnecessary holiday to watch the Olympics while everyone else is back to work, and that they’re getting paid by the taxpayers on this “vacation” while they focus on the Olympics. It also is very easy to point out that the last time the Olympics were here in Canada, Brian Mulroney didn’t feel the need to prorogue in order for everyone to pay attnetion (For that matter, did Pierre Trudeau prorogue the House in 1976 when Montreal had them?).

I also am a little bemused that with the angry reaction to prorogation, why certain government ministers and MP’s keep trying to trot out the “focus on the Olympics” as another good reason to prorogue. If any reason got met with the most hostility, it was this one. Yet they stubbornly insist that people need to focus on the Olympics and having the House in session would be a distraction for that.

The only distraction here is that the Conservatives were hoping prorogation and the Olympics would combine to make people forget they were trying to avoid accountability to Parliament. The first part of that equation hasn’t worked; and I think people have longer memories then 2 weeks of a sporting event will erase.


3 comments to Another Conservative uses the Olympics as an excuse for prorogation

  • Big Winnie

    The Conservative MPs are participating in the “Duck and Run” event at the Olympics and that’s the real reason they prorogued.

  • Jim Vincent

    Yes, it’s a stupid excuse, but the question of whether or not the Olympics will dampen or sideline the month-long debate over prorogation is still unanswered.

    There is a very real sense that it could, and we shouldn’t discount the fact that after the Jan.23 rallies, it has become more evident that the CAPP movement has no unified focus anymore and the NDP-Liberal divisions are becoming more prominent with the differing approaches to rectifying the prorogation process and, to a lesser extent, the mild row within CAPP over the visible NDP presence at some of the CAPP rallies (which strikes me largely as griping by a handful of Liberals who have no experience at rallies – IMHO).

    This is not to say that the Tories will suddenly shoot up in the polls, but rather the momentum behind CAPP will dissipate and the general anti-prorogation sentiment will be subsumed into the parliamentary realm once the house resumes after the olympics.

    Either one of Canada’s medal-winning athletes has to slam Harper on a very public platform (here’s hoping!), or CAPP has to find a new, unified program of attack that can withstand parliamentary politics – what we have to recognize as the graveyard of social movements (the NDP being the graveyard of the labour movement!). But the decentralized and grassroots character of CAPP which gave it its élan is also its weakness – there is no nationally-coordinated group within CAPP that has the capacity to pose a new direction for CAPP. This is effectively what is required to reorient a broad-based movement, but to do so requires something akin to a political party. But since CAPP is “non-partisan” and both the Liberals and NDP have no real activist capability of moving CAPP (and even if they tried, they would fatally fracture CAPP), CAPP is left aimless. Alternatively, a “leader” could emerge from CAPP but again, this seems unlikely.

    CAPP needs either to launch a conference for democratic reform and start to solidify the local facebook chapters as REAL chapters, or quickly find a new protest date. I’m sure stuff is in the works, but nothing is being picked up in the media.

    End rant.

  • Couple that with all the negative press the Owe-lympics is getting and the Cons’ hope of riding an euphoric wave doesn’t look so good, eh? Here is one more to add to The Guardian piece that’s going ’round the blogosphere: Sports Illustrated-CNN: In Vancouver, “the first thing I noticed was the frowns.”

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