By Ralph Goodale, M.P.
From its first day in office, Stephen Harper’s government has been one of questionable legitimacy.
The Conservatives made two massive, vote-buying promises in the last campaign which they quickly dishonoured. One was never to tax Income Trusts. The other was to pay Saskatchewan $800 million more every year in Equalization.
Such bare-faced dishonesty obviously undermines Conservative legitimacy.
Their position is further eroded by the serious legal questions which have been raised by the Chief Electoral Officer about a Conservative election financing scam in the last campaign.
Respected, independent election officials are investigating whether campaign spending limits were violated at the national level, while illegitimate reimbursement claims were filed locally.
On top of that, the Conservatives benefited shamelessly from the extraordinary and inexplicable involvement of the RCMP in the last campaign. Every credible independent observer says this incident in the midst of the last election had a huge and totally improper impact.
Two and a half years later, Stephen Harper now wants a snap election – in violation of his promise of a fixed election date in October of 2009.
The illegitimate Conservative behaviour continues.
What has the Harper government so panicked that they are prepared to break their word to Canadians – yet again – and even break the spirit of the fixed-election-date law which they, themselves, enacted?
They’re spooked by at least three things on the horizon, which don’t look good for Mr. Harper.
First, the Conservatives will lose all four of the federal byelections called for September.
Secondly, the national economy is getting into deeper trouble, and the responsibility will rest squarely on Mr. Harper’s shoulders.
And third, the investigations into Conservative ethical lapses are exposing more and more illustrations of apparent Conservative corruption and incompetence
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Posted by Fillibluster at 9:05 PM