Right to govern lasts only if Commons has confidence

Mark Strahl is quoted in Tuesday’s Progress as saying the opposition will “pay a price for forcing the election on Canadians”.

I’m concerned about this as it sounds like a threat and most of us don’t care much to be threatened. It is also a bit odd that voting for your government would be considered something bad that the opposition is forcing Canadians to do – especially when we are watching people throughout the Middle East fighting and dying for just such an opportunity.

Any government in Canada’s parliamentary system remains in power only so long as it has the confidence of the House of Commons, and a minority government is almost always on the verge of losing that. This particular government under Prime Minister Harper has been particularly bone-headed about a whole variety of issues and it surprises me that it has lasted this long.

Mr. Strahl goes on to say that MPs should be in Ottawa working on the county’s economic action plan. Let’s recall that going into the recession, Prime Minister Harper had no plan what-so-ever to deal with our economic circumstances – indeed his finance minister had just released a financial plan that had nothing at all in it for dealing with the world recession. During an interview with CBC’s Peter Mansbridge, Prime Minister Harper declared that the recession offered some good investment opportunities – not something of much help to those facing unemployment. Indeed, were it not for the threat of a Liberal/NDP coalition, the Harper government would have done nothing to help our communities and citizens during these difficult times. So it is more than a little unbecoming for Strahl to suggest that an election is interfering with this government’s attempt to deal with the economic action plan.

Mr. Strahl should recognize that it is a wonderful right to be able to elect, in a democratic manner, those we will allow to govern us and that from time to time we must have an opportunity to revisit that matter.


Al Ens


Chilliwack Fraser Canyon NDP

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