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A big blue herring

Yea, the saying is usually a “red herring”, but I felt it appropriate to change it to blue to coincide with the Conservatives, whose colour is blue of course. Anyhow, regardless of the herring’s colour, that’s what this excuse for voting against a Liberal motion calling on the government to include family planning in any G8 maternal health initiative. Apparently, it’s anti-American:

Conservative MPs will vote against a Liberal motion today to include family planning as part of the G8 maternal and child health was clear the government had seized upon the second part of the Liberal motion which attacks the right-wing policies of the former George Bush government in the U.S. as a reason to urge its MPs to vote against it. “The whole anti-American slant they have taken is really unacceptable,” Conservative MP Rick Dykstra said Tuesday.

The final paragraph in the Liberal motion to be voted on today reads: “that the Canadian government should refrain from advancing the failed right-wing ideologies previously imposed by the George W. Bush administration in the United States which made humanitarian assistance conditional upon a ‘global gag rule’ that required all non-governmental organizations receiving federal funding to refrain from promoting medically-sound family planning.”

If the Conservatives want to be (more) accurate here – which is a rarity with this bunch – they could say this motion is anti-George Bush or anti-Republican Party, and not get too much argument from me or others, but it definitely is not “anti-American”. As a comparison, American Republican congressmen and senators have been putting down and been critical of the Canadian health care system for the past few months during their health care debate, and I don’t consider that to be anti-Canadian. They are being critical of a Canadian policy/system – the Liberals are doing the same thing by being critical of a past Republican government policy and asking the Conservative government to not repeat the policy here. The Conservatives in calling this an ‘anti-American’ motion are being silly; its more of an ‘anti-that-particular-policy-by-that-particular-American-Administration’ motion.

I would surmise the Conservative government needed an excuse/reason to vote against this motion to prevent their social conservative wing from breaking into open revolt, so this was the flimsy excuse/reason they settled on. I think most folks will see through the mock outrage.

UPDATE @ 6:59 pm: Unfortunately, the Liberal motion was defeated 144-138, with 3 Liberal MP’s known to be socially conservative voting against, and at least 3 others abstaining or absent (Anita Neville was in Poland, the other 2 were abstainers or no-shows). This was apparently a whipped vote, so I would expect those 3 Liberals and any Liberals who were absent without excuses to be disciplined for breaking ranks on this.


10 comments to A big blue herring

  • Taking a walk through the media sites the headlines are saying the Conservatives are voting against a motion in support of contraception and family planning.

    I wonder how that will go over with urban and suburban women?

  • bubba

    How are the headlines looking now? What a bunch of fools. Any connection to why Liblogs is down tonight. Rae did not even have support of his caucus and he tries to pound the CPC.There was no reason for this crap 10 or so Lib MPs know it . I knew it. Now all the liberal lemmings (I think thats how you spell it) can wear it,

  • bull caller

    What do the Libs stand for?

    Well for one, along with the NDP and Bloc, for the most part they are Pro-choice, and for contraception (outside of abortion) as part of a woman’s reproductive health in the third world.

    For conservatives on the other hand see also: Old Testament.

    The conservatives were FORCED to flip flop on their social conservative views of “helping mothers and children” in the 3rd world. God knows their idea of helping the poor is to have them stuff 10%’ers into envelopes. The motion outed this pathetic bunch for what they are, and for all their howling, they know its true – what say you Bubba? Do you support social conservatives controlling agenda based on their religion versus science? Are you willing to answer or am I being “anti american” – pffft!!

    I find it all very funny seeing as how I thought you cons were all about less government control? Bubba, it isn’t your bedroom, or your uterus – mind your own bits and pieces and let the people who know what women and children in this region need based on research and science (also known as reality)….

  • bubba

    What has the motion achieved? Nothing
    What do the Libs stand for? Nothing
    If they want the canadian Gov’t to pay for abortions around the world then put it in the motion.
    If you dont have the courage to say it then don’t push it.
    The cons obviously don’t have the courage to change Canada’s abortion laws so they are not.
    A bunch of wasted time. The libs had 1 chance today to show canadians what they stand for and what’s important to them and now we all know ,thats good. Don’t tell me tommorrow you care about my job because your actions show where that ranks.

  • Anon

    Nothing but a bunch of men telling women what to do. Women own their bodies. Perhaps women who live in countries where family planning and contraception is denied should tell their boy-friends and husbands….”sorry darlin, untl you can prvide me with contraception…no go. I don’t want to get pregnant”.

  • Ottlib

    Clever of the Liberals to put that final paragraph in the motion, virtually guaranteeing the Conservatives would vote against it.

    Taking a walk through the media sites the headlines are saying the Conservatives are voting against a motion in support of contraception and family planning.

    I wonder how that will go over with urban and suburban women?

    It is not just the Conservatives that can insert poison pills into their motions.

  • bubba

    Could the first half of the motion not stand on it’s own? Why attack right wing ideology and G.W. what is the point of that. If the cons are sayin that it covers contraception and will not deny funding to organizations that talk about abortion. Which it sounds like they are doing. What more do the libs want. This is such a waste of effort on their part surely there is something more relevant that their constituents would like them to discuss than this.They only have limited items they can bring up and they choose this. If it is more than badgering I don’t see it. They better do some thinking ,they are becoming more irrelevant each day parliament sits.

    • Red Forever


      The conservatives are denying funding of abortions, and contraception.

      They do not believe in family planning either.

      That in my book is immoral.

      What is your answer?

      I guess we should tell people in Africa to stop having sex.

      To bring children into the world, when you can not even feed, clothe, and educate the ones you have is wrong.

      Harper is basing his decisions on his right wing crack pot religion.

      His new found focus on the maternal health, and wellness of women and children in the third world is a farce and a sham.

      Even the Europeans are laughing at us, which is par for the course under that disgrace of a PM we have.

      Do you think it is healthy for a woman to give birth to 13 or 14 children.

      Get serious, pull your head out of the sand, stop towing the CPC line, and for goodness sake, for the benefit of everyone here start to make some sense.

      As for the GWB policiies, only right wing crackpots would term them as a success.

    • Jon Pertwee

      @bubba, “Why attack right wing ideology and G.W. what is the point of that?” Hmm… the same could be said of 95% of Harper’s partisan attacks.

      But then again bubba the Harper juice seems to keep you blinded.

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