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Old 06-29-2004, 04:47 AM   #1 (permalink)
Daval's Avatar
Location: The True North Strong and Free!
Thank you sir, may I have another?

Voters seemed to shrug off the scandal that plagued Paul Martin’s Liberals and decided to give the party another chance on Monday.

The Grits fought their way to a minority government in the national vote, backed by surprisingly strong support in both Ontario and Atlantic Canada.

Martin’s team managed to sweep through Atlantic Canada early in the evening and pushed back into the lead in seat-rich Central Canada.

The Liberals were headed for about 135 seats, down from 176 in the last election in 2000, in the early hours of Tuesday morning, once the last few votes were counted up.

But a minority government would still sting a bit for Martin.

Only months ago the thinking was that he would move easily back into Ottawa’s throne. But the federal sponsorship scandal hurt the Liberals and numerous polls that emerged during the campaign hinted that the Conservatives were on track to get the minority. But Conservative Leader Stephen Harper’s team was on track to get just 99 seats.

“I will admit that I feel some disappointment tonight, but you should feel none…we deprived the Liberals of the majority they thought they were entitled to,” he intoned.

Still, a new Liberal power would be very different from Jean Chretien’s majorities. It would have to depend on the support of the Bloc Quebecois or the N.D.P. to make it through. And that means each little chunk of legislation would have to be negotiated. On Monday night N.D.P. Leader Jack Layton said he expected to hear from Martin soon.

Layton was positively jubilant at his party’s performance. The New Democrats were set to get 19 seats.

“My friends, is this a party on the move or what?!” he yelled. “Parliament is about to get a big dose of new energy, my friends…right across this country tonight, more than twice as many people voted for New Democrats from coast to coast to coast.”

Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe was also excited, after his team made off with 54 of Quebec’s 75 ridings.

But the spotlight really shone the brightest on Martin Monday night, as he admitted that his party had faced a loss, but claimed it was ready to move forward.

“But an election is a time to pass judgment, and the message in this regard was unmistakable. Canadians expected and expect more from us. And as a party and as a government we must do better, and we will, I pledge that to you tonight,” he promised.

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Well, I for one am very dissapointed in the red wave that occured in my home province of Ontario. People bitch and complain about our government, yet we elect them right back in. Albeit a minority government this time, but I think we are clearly sending the message - It's ok for you to lie, cheat and steal - we'll always forgive you.
"It is impossible to obtain a conviction for sodomy from an English jury. Half of them don't believe that it can physically be done, and the other half are doing it."
Winston Churchill
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Old 06-29-2004, 07:20 AM   #2 (permalink)
Wehret Den Anfängen!
Location: Ontario, Canada
In the olden days, the PCs and Liberals had minor policy differences. Flip flopping between them didn't have all that much impact.

The creation of the two regional parties (Reform and Bloc Quebecois) fractured and destroyed the old PC party. The new Conservative party isn't the old PC party, and isn't the kind of party that most people form Ontario want running the government apparently. Me included.

The money wasted by the Liberals is somewhat mitigated by the fact they have run the country well for 10 years, paid off 10% of the half-trillion dollar debt that previous fiscially irresponsible governments ran up, and their election promises are believeable. If you assume all the scandals where purely wasted money, it still pales in comparison to how much debt we paid off. I don't like being in debt, and don't appreciate other's using my credit to buy bread and circuses.

The NDP stated they would stop paying off the debt. The Conservatives promised they would spend more, tax less, and pay off the debt more, while claiming to have absolutely no policy on many social issues ("free vote").

What I am hoping to come out of this election is the NDP's promise to have purportional representation reform in the House of Commons. It is something that can be done without a constitutional reform (unlike, say, the Conservative election promise to remove sufferage from Federal prisoners, sigh). If it goes forward, it will forever change the structure of Canadian politics. Minority governments would become the norm instead of the exception, and parties with a broad but shallow base of support would have a say at the federal level (instead of the current system, which encourages regionalism).

If this works, we'll have Green, Family Coallition, Liberal, Bloc, Conservative, NDP, and Progressive Canadian parties all playing in Parliament. You'll be able to vote for the party that reflects your views, rather than for the one closest to your views that has a chance of winning.

The interesting thing is that right now the Liberals+NDP have exactly 1/2 of the seats in the House of Commons. With a speaker from their ranks this isn't a majority. They will either have to find another vote from somewhere, or select a non-party member for speaker of the house.
Last edited by JHVH : 10-29-4004 BC at 09:00 PM. Reason: Time for a rest.
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Old 06-29-2004, 07:31 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Location: Ontario, Canada
Yeah, the only thing I really agree with Jack Layton on is proportional representation. I don't think it's happening soon, but it should get a push with the NDP holding the balance of power.
Si vis pacem parabellum.
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Old 06-29-2004, 08:04 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: UCSB
I was watching the election results on CSpan 2 last night, and the commentary seemed to suggest that the Liberals lost because of bad actions, not bad policy. I think that the minorty government that the Liberals now have is a sign that bad actions will not be tolerated. Also, if scandals did occur in the Liberal why didn't the PM (Miller ?) step down? Isn't it customary in a Parli system from the PM to step-down when scandals occur?

Also, can a Canadian explain how the Liberal/Conservative scale in Canada relates to the American scale?
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Old 06-29-2004, 08:07 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Location: Ontario, Canada
All of Canadian politics is really left of say the republicans, but in relative terms:

Conservatives - right of centre
Liberals - centre
NDP - left of centre
Si vis pacem parabellum.
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Old 06-29-2004, 08:12 AM   #6 (permalink)
I think it is disappointing that people refuse to gravitate towards change especially after the scandals that plagued the Liberals for ten years. And how much of the nations debt (in billions) was paid off by simply withholding health transfer payments to all the provinces that were rightly deserving. I guess it doesn't matter to Paul Martin. If he gets sick, he goes to the front of the line. And I can't help but look at every receipt for goods purchased and wonder how much of that money will be duly wasted.

I am disappointed too that people feel they need to give Paul Martin a chance to run this country. I think it is more a pity vote since for some reason people feel he was slighted by Chretien and somehow through attrition deserves the job. I also can't believe the Liberal attack ads that were basically complete lies regarding the Conservatives,actually worked. Paul Martin wasn't even an elected Prime Minister and the lies preceded his coronation. Something to look forward to.

Now lets see how many of those election promises he will keep. I think the honeymoon will end very quickly since although people voted for him, they now want those promises to turn into reality and fast. Paul Martin will have to virtually bankrupt the country to fulfill all his promises which is why he is going to be in hot water sooner than later because he won't be able to do it.

At the best, he has 18 months to do what the Liberal party couldn't do in 10 years, fulfill all of his promises. Time is a ticking and the man who wanted the job as Prime Minister so bad may well wish he didn't want it at all. And people think Dalton in Ontario is getting a rough ride. Just wait until Martin starts bailing on his promises. Funny thing though, he has no one to blame but his own party unlike the idiot in Ontario.

Yes this is sour grapes because I am a man who takes honesty and integrity very seriously. I know politicians lie through their teeth to get elected but still to reward the Liberals with a minority government really has me thinking about this country and the values it holds. This may have been the last election I voted in. If not the last, the next one will be if the Liberals win.
" In Canada, you can tell the most blatant lie in a calm voice, and people will believe you over someone who's a little passionate about the truth." David Warren, Western Standard.
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Old 06-30-2004, 11:08 AM   #7 (permalink)
Getting it.
Charlatan's Avatar
Super Moderator
Location: Lion City
I think what ultimately did in Harper and the Conservatives was:

a) people didn't trust them - the Liberal ads took votes from both the NDP and the Conservatives. Better the devil you know.

b) Harper and his Conservatives, as much as they state otherwise, are still a regional western based party. Harper's comments over the weekend before the election when he fell back on the old Reform platitudes... "At last the west will be in the driver's seat" or something to that effect. That isn't going to win over the east.

The east is traditionally Centre/Centre Left in its politics and that isn't going to change.

The Conservatives need to have a policy convention (something they haven't had yet) and nail down just what their policy is... They created a vacuum in their social policy... fee vote isn't going to cut it. As they say Nature abhorrs a vacuum... this one was filled by the Liberal ads and the Conservative candidates themselves...
"My hands are on fire. Hands are on fire. Ain't got no more time for all you charlatans and liars."
- Old Man Luedecke
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Old 06-30-2004, 11:12 AM   #8 (permalink)
Getting it.
Charlatan's Avatar
Super Moderator
Location: Lion City
Originally posted by nanofever
Also, if scandals did occur in the Liberal why didn't the PM (Miller ?) step down? Isn't it customary in a Parli system from the PM to step-down when scandals occur?

Also, can a Canadian explain how the Liberal/Conservative scale in Canada relates to the American scale?
Cretien was PM during the scandals. When he stepped down, Paul Martin was acclaimed leader of the Liberals and therefore the PM.

As for stepping down in general... no it isn't customary at all. When you have a majority government like Cretien did, you just tell everyone to fuck off and you get on with governing...
"My hands are on fire. Hands are on fire. Ain't got no more time for all you charlatans and liars."
- Old Man Luedecke
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Old 06-30-2004, 02:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
it's jam
splck's Avatar
Location: Lowerainland BC
Originally posted by Charlatan

As for stepping down in general... no it isn't customary at all. When you have a majority government like Cretien did, you just tell everyone to fuck off and you get on with governing...
LOL...and he did that more than once
nice line eh?
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canada, govt, liberals, minority, sir, win

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