Sunday, August 24, 2014

Ditching It

                                                          http://herdingcats.typepad.com/

Stephen Harper spent the week wandering around the North, crowd testing his stump speech for the 2015 election. Chantal Hebert writes that, before decides to take the plunge, Harper faces two challenges.

The first is Michael Chong's parliamentary reform bill -- which would put significant curbs on his power. Because Chong and former Conservative M.P. Brent Rathgeber seem to be the only Harper M.P.'s courageous enough to think for themselves, the prime minister will probably swat aside that potential problem.

But he faces a bigger problem -- a by-election for Jim Flaherty's Oshawa-Whitby seat:

For as long as the former finance minister was its MP, the riding of Whitby-Oshawa was not on anyone’s list of top seats at play and that likely would not have changed had the Conservatives succeeded in bringing Flaherty’s widow, Christine Elliott, over to the federal arena.

But Elliott, who was reelected to the Ontario legislature in the spring, has set her sights on the provincial Tory leadership and Tim Hudak’s succession.
Whitby-Oshawa landed in the Conservative column in 2006 and Flaherty increased his share of the vote to more than 50 per cent over the two subsequent elections. But it was previously in Liberal hands and the party has been on a bit of a by-election roll since Justin Trudeau became its leader.

In the recent Ontario election -- where provincial and federal ridings are congruent -- politics took a distinctly anti-Harper turn. And it's worth remembering that Flaherty's seat used to belong to former NDP leader Ed Broadbent. Voters in that riding could prove to be far more independent than Harper's caucus.

If Harper loses Oshawa-Whitby, it could serve as a bell weather for what will happen in Ontario. If Ontario turns against Harper, he will have no majority. And, if a majority is out of reach, Harper will have to ditch his stump speech -- and, perhaps, politics altogether.


14 comments:

Anonymous said...

I remember once driving down the highway in early spring when the temperature was close to the freezing point. The highway was wet, but drivable. The highway then dropped into a valley of maybe fifty meters. The temperature change was such that the highway surface was sheer ice at the bottom of the valley. Regardless of my actions - steer into the skid, pump the brakes - I ended up performing a seven hundred and twenty degree rotation and ended up in the ditch.

I think this is where Harper is headed now. The temperature has changed in Canada, and he is headed for the ditch.

Rural said...

I note that Chongs bill has been considerably watered down from its original text Owen, however it would still be a small step in the right direction in curbing the PMs power both now and for future, hopefully more democratic minded, individuals. That said I will be very suprised if this legislation ever sees the light of day whilst Harper holds the reigns, as for Ontario going anti Conservative .....we can but hope!

Owen Gray said...

The external signs suggest that he hasn't figured that out yet, Anon. And, so, he heads into the valley, full speed ahead.

Owen Gray said...

Like you, Rural, I will be surprised if Chong's bill makes it through the House.

One way or the other, Ontario is going to make the difference in the next election. And, at this point, I'm making no predictions.

Anonymous said...

Harper is making it his business, to be re-elected by foul deeds. It isn't beneath Harper's dignity to cheat.

I have no idea why, Harper and Christy Clark are still in office? Now it sounds as if, the Mount Polley catastrophic dam burst, will not be cleaned up. That is so Imperial Metals, can cheat their way out of paying the money the money for a clean-up.

We all know how, Harper, Gordon Campbell and Christy Clark won their elections? The same way other fascists won their elections.

The Mound of Sound said...

Harper can't and won't give up his iron grip on the Tory caucus. Absolute control is his standard and only operating procedure. I don't think he's short of adversaries lurking, waiting within his own ranks.

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2g7JzSFn_w

Owen Gray said...

Thanks for the link, Anon. It seems to me that the third alternative applies to this government. They don't want to know.

Owen Gray said...

I suspect, Mound that -- when he leaves -- there will be no shortage of applicants for his job.

Owen Gray said...

And sad to say, Anon, so far they have gotten away with it.

mogs moglio said...

"...Harper will have to ditch his stump speech -- and, perhaps, politics altogether."

Isn't this a nice thought? Only it comes ten years too late, Harper has already done his damage vis a vis

[http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/vis-%C3%A0-vis]

""Canada is a Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term, and very proud of it"" - Steve the slick dick Harper

Speech to a Montreal meeting of the Council for National Policy, June 1997

http://unseatharper.ca/harper-quotes.php

He wanted to dismantle Canada and he has succeeded. Now dear Justin and/or Thomas have never offered to re-mantle it...

The 1% won the war on Canada thanks to Stephen bloody Harper.

Harper has blood on his hands...

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/at-last-facing-torture-furor-stephen-harper-goes-on-the-offensive/article793061/

He would rather photo op and stump than deal with reality.

We still have a hangin tree out west...

Steve come on out here and see if the noose fits?

liberalandlovingit! said...

Considering the fact- the Con's never HAD a genuine majority, ever-
and that they're all the more 'exposed' this time-
Ontario just isn't the electoral oasis the Con's have manipulated into submission...


I hear there's a Trudeau in town.
More importantly, he brings a new way which involves us.
Breath of fresh air, it is.

Owen Gray said...

Without a doubt, Mogs, Harper has done immense damage to the country. And he's proud of it.

Owen Gray said...

The Son also rises, Loving It.