Thursday, September 03, 2009

Playing hard to get - 2

“Is an election the answer? No, a change of direction is. But if the Liberals come through with a non-confidence motion, don’t hold your breath that the NDP will back up Mr. Harper — you’d fall over.”
-Jack Layton, last week

NDP Leader Jack Layton is to hold a news conference Thursday to clarify the party’s position.

A key source said Layton will announce that he’s willing to support the government on a case-by-case basis if it backs NDP private members bills on issues such as extending EI benefits, measures to help seniors, and regulating credit card rates.

And Layton will even give Harper some wiggle room, stopping short of presenting a specific “shopping list.”



  • I think Jack! would come off better if he said he and his caucus were going to consult Canadians about whether they wanted an election ten months after the last one. But can he make any issue not be about him?

    By Blogger nuna d. above, at 12:03 PM  

  • 79 times without suggesting something better or anything at all. At the first hint of an election all the hollier than thou libs come out of the wood work to attack the NDP when the enemy to this country is the reform cons not much wonder the libs aren't getting anywhere they don't know who the enemy is.

    By Blogger NBDUDE, at 9:00 PM  

  • When I think of "hollier than thou" politicians, I think of the ND's, not the Liberals. I can't help thinking that the ND's promote policies that aren't sustainable or internally consistant BECAUSE they know they won't gain power and actually try to implement them...

    I hold no brief for the Liberals, either, but at least they understand that they need power to be really effective. One might argue that they don't do much with that power once they get it, but one can always hope.

    By Blogger Party of One, at 6:52 AM  

  • "I hold no brief for the Liberals, either, but at least they understand that they need power to be really effective."

    I don't think that is true at all. If you look at two of the most critical policy decisions in Canadian history - universal healthcare and Chretien's cuts in the 90's, they were driven by opposition parties with no power.

    In the case of healthcare, the NDP used their leverage in a minority government. In the case of the deficit, Reform didn't even need a minority government. The realization from Chretien that Reform was his major electoral threat was enough for him to act.

    The NDP model (or Reform model or Bloc model) is sometimes effective. Of course Liberals tend not to think so, as they often believe themselves the rightful owners of left-of-centre votes. I have often seen Liberals castigate the NDP for being anything but a party of principle unlikely to ever succeed electorally.

    If I were Jack Layton, I would cut a deal with Harper. An election will cost the NDP seats and could possibly bankrupt the party (they spent the full 20 M dollars in the last election).

    Might there be a furor over the NDP cooperating with the Tories? Sure. I suspect that most of this naysaying will come from people likely to strategically vote Liberal anyway. If the NDP believes itself to be a real party, and not (like the Green party) a haven for left-wingers that will disassemble whenever it inconveniences the Liberals, they need to at least make Harper a fair offer.

    In doing so they can talk about results to their constituents (they increased their seat count 33% in 2006 after cooperating with Martin), and gain the gratitude of Canadians that want to see parliament work.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 1:16 PM  

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    By Anonymous IzzoNet Review, at 5:54 AM  

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