Tuesday, March 16, 2010

On forward motion

The NDP has taken the lead in introducing a prorogation motion for consideration by the House of Commons. And while it wouldn't have a direct binding effect, it looks to be a useful first step in building up momentum toward the legislation the NDP has discussed before:
The motion that Mr. Layton will introduce reads as follows:

“That, in the opinion of the House, the Prime Minister shall not advise the Governor General to prorogue any session of any Parliament for longer than seven calendar days without a specific resolution of this House of Commons to support such a prorogation.”
What's perhaps most notable about the motion as compared to the NDP's previous proposal is that it incorporates one of the ideas suggested by the Libs to restrict only extended prorogation orders. The change weakens the original NDP position somewhat by continuing to permit governments to hit the reset button with relative impunity (if only for a short period of time). But that compromise will figure to be worthwhile if it encourages the Libs and Bloc to vote along with the motion and establish the will of the House of Commons on how prorogation can and can't be used.

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