Monday, December 22, 2008

A logical conclusion

Joe Jordan raises (warning: PDF) an interesting point about the effect of Michaelle Jean's decision allowing prorogation as a means of avoiding a confidence vote:
(W)hat this decision has done is to pretty much guarantee that the Governor General will enshrine the practice of approaching the leader of the opposition following the loss of a confidence vote. The opposition parties are not really in a position to publicly declare their intentions prior to any vote, if prorogation is now a legitimate blocking tactic.
Now, there's plenty of room for doubt as to whether or not the process actually followed by Jean is the ideal one. Indeed, it's possible that Harper could seek prorogation yet again if the coalition is rightly prepared to keep up its plan once another confidence vote is set to take place - and given the desperation the Cons have shown in clinging to power, I for one wouldn't be surprised if that comes to pass.

But it does seem entirely logical that if the GG's powers have been interpreted to create a disincentive to any declaration of the non-incumbents' position in advance of a confidence vote, then some leeway has to be given to the opposition parties after the fact. And that reasoning, along with Harper's frantic grab for whatever he can get his hands on during his temporary reprieve from democracy, would seem to hint at the result if Harper tries to force another election rather than allowing the coalition to put a stable government in place.

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