Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Dead Issue

Bouquets of Grey has done the math, and predicts that Harper's promised free vote on same sex marriage would go down in flames, gathering at most 130 MPs in favour.

I don't think it's a stretch to say that the person happiest by this news is none other than Stephen Harper.


  • Well brilliant! After all, Harper never promised anything more than a motion on the issue (followed by a Blair-like civil registry if it passed).

    I'm not convinced that the counting is correct though. At least twelve members of Martin's former cabinet have voted both ways on the issue (Hello! Joe Volpe! Are you out there?). Logic really doesn't apply here and, freed of the whip, they might just change their minds again. Of course, I expect that more than a few who voted Nay last time might find it convenient to be on a fact-finding mission in Aruba (Hi Paul Zed! Wave!) when the matter comes up.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:14 p.m.  

  • It will be so far down the priority list that another election will be underway before it shows up again. TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 3:43 p.m.  

  • Abortion, same sex, Israel, International terrorism will not come up until they form a majority. you are going to see a muzzled Stockwell Day and no wonder they are not giving him Foregin affairs!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:56 p.m.  

  • Harper will hold a free vote on same-sex marriage, and it will result in same sex marriage being allowed, although preserving the traditional definition of marriage will get more that 130 votes. By my count it will get 145-150, it'll be close.

    This *should* please both the people that he promised the free vote to, and those who want same-sex marriage to be allowed. Then Harper can declare the matter finished.

    Hopefully after that, the Liberals will let the issue die, but I'm sure they'll still try to dig it up as a wedge issue.

    By Blogger Michael Fox, at 4:34 p.m.  

  • Liberals should declare it to be a dead issue, and abstain. If Harper wants to bring forward a bill, let him do it. That's what leadership is about.

    If he brings forward a bill, then I would suggest it should be defeated.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:22 p.m.  

  • i hate wedge issues. wedge issues are called wedge issues because they act like an AX being thrust into the cohesiveness of canada. they cause gaping cleavages that run across political affiliation, families, and friends. if a party says its not going to be an issue, we should take them on their word. that way if they do end up legislating on it, they will have to face the electorate that they lied to. there was plenty of real policy to criticise in the tory platform. if the liberal criticisms were not making traction, than accept that the canadian public is ok with some their ideas. it is not ok to start trying to brand them with an identity that doesn't really belong to them. and now, because they have won, they will forge their record to disprove all the fear mongering, and it will be harder to defeat them on policy next time. it really is self defeating.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:04 p.m.  

  • My conclusion is the same. Harper's found a compromise between progays and traditionalists. He'll be able to say he's standing up for democracy with the free vote, protecting gay marriage cuz it won't get repealed, and for the traditionalists he can say he gave them a shot. Harper wants this out of the way to show he and the CPC are ok.
    I'd argue a large majority will vote pro-gay marriage though; not a close call like the Toronto Tory said.
    I posted the ideas on my centrist blog, (majority vs minority), and on my diary at progressive bloggers.
    Nice to see someone popular has the same thoughts.

    By Blogger lecentre, at 9:29 p.m.  

  • Harper will only be happy if his anti-SSM MPs do the math and realize that calling a free vote on SSM is a terrible idea.

    But it only takes one innumerate idiot to fail to do the math and call a free vote anyway. The only question is, which innumerate moron Conservative MP will do it? There are ever so many possibilities.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:48 p.m.  

  • Maybe. The question will be framed differently by the Conservatives in government than the Liberals did. According to Paul Martin, the Charter requires SSM, so he asked, "Who's against the Charter of Rights and Freedoms?"

    The Conservatives, on the other hand, will offer MPs a choice: "Do you support SSM, or would you prefer civil unions plus traditional marriage?"

    Also, the PM won't be twisting arms of Liberal MPs this time. Thus it is entirely possible that we will see SSM rejected by many more Liberals than last time.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:02 a.m.  

  • The issue is not done yet.

    By Anonymous satin shirt, at 7:42 a.m.  

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