Eye on Outremont

119 posts / 0 new
Last post
remind remind's picture
Eye on Outremont

Just an Outremont thread

ottawaobserver

Could we repurpose this into a bit broader of an NDP Quebec strategy thread, since the Outremont story seems to be done like dinner, but meanwhile there are a couple of other interesting developments going on, for example in Hochelaga and Sherbrooke?

From the Jurist yesterday:  "events [in Hochelaga] are playing out about as well as the NDP could possibly have hoped".

And the other day:  "why Sherbrooke indeed makes loads of sense as one of the NDP's Quebec targets".

Also, what are the implications for us if business executive Nathalie Le Prohon runs in Jeanne-Le Ber, not exactly the wealthiest riding on the Island?  Did people who went to convention get the sense that Daniel Breton was prepared to run again there for us?

Stockholm

I heard that Breton does wnat to run again and he was at the convention as well. It makes it easier to have a Liberal candidate there who is such a patrician.

Stockholm

Incidentally, if you want to see really good analysis about what the Outremont fracas tells us about the Liberal Party, read this interesting article by L. Ian MacDonald in today's Gazette:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Liberal+follies/2038785/story.html

Cauchon's career path began in his native La Malbaie, where he worked as a butler on the household staff of Paul Desmarais. This is how he would have met Desmarais's son André and his wife France, whose father, Jean Chrétien, became Liberal leader in 1990, after years of constantly undermining the leadership of John Turner.

It's either overlooked or mostly forgotten that Cauchon was the Liberal candidate, its poteau, against Brian Mulroney in Charlevoix in the 1988 election. Cauchon later joked that Mulroney was "my MP." In 1993, when Chrétien's chief Quebec organizer, Pietro Rizutto, couldn't find a star candidate to run in Outremont, he appointed Cauchon with Chrétien's approval. Cauchon went on to become justice minister and Quebec lieutenant in Chrétien's last term, though his accomplishments in both roles are not of historic dimensions.

 

martin dufresne

Little-known fact: In 1989, Cauchon was lawyering at the legal study of Me Emile COLAS, an Opus Dei operative and arch-foe of the feminist movement in Quebec. Indeed, I remember a press photo of Colas and Cauchon standing by batterer Jean-Guy Tremblay when he obtained an injunction in Quebec Superior Court to impede Chantale Daigle from obtaining an abortion, twenty years ago, in the late summer of 1989.

 

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

Yeah, yeah, I know all politics are local... but this should be sent back to the central canadian ghetto it came from. Posted in the wrong forum. Further in national news, cat stuck in a tree in Mississauga...

Stockholm

martin dufresne wrote:

Little-known fact: In 1989, Cauchon was lawyering at the legal study of Me Emile COLAS, an Opus Dei operative and arch-foe of the feminist movement in Quebec. Indeed, I remember a press photo of Colas and Cauchon standing by batterer Jean-Guy Tremblay when he obtained an injunction in Quebec Superior Court to impede Chantale Daigle from obtaining an abortion, twenty years ago, in the late summer of 1989.

So what? when you're a lawyer you take any case and you try to do the best job you can. I know some very good people who work as criminal defence lawyers - who have defended pedophiles and biker gang members - i don't believe in guilt by association for any of them.

MUN Prof. MUN Prof.'s picture

The plot thickens.

Ignatieff's office was completely unaware of Coderre's plans and said the Liberal leader had not been in contact with his lieutenant over the weekend. However, Ignatieff has left three voice mails on Coderre's cellphone and two emails this morning, all of which have gone unanswered.

Stockholm

Needless to say with Coderre quitting as Ignatieff's Quebec Lieutenant - the Liberals are now in total dissarray in Quebec. If you here any Liberals sqawking about how they want to bring down the government and force an election right now - you know they are lying through their teeth!

remind remind's picture

So what did say in the nws conference, and LOL.

Unionist

Coderre said he no longer had the "moral autority" to act as Ignatieff's lieutanant. Aren't there some oxymorons in there? Try saying "moral" and "Ignatieff" in the same paragraph. See what I mean?

Anyway, I just hope all this adds up to good news for my MP.

 

SCB4

Looks like the turkeys are preparing to vote in favour of Thanksgiving.

 

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/liberals-prepare-confidence-motion-but-lose-quebec-lieutenant/article1303808

 

/

Stockholm

Hah! The fact Coderre made thinly veiled comments about Ignatieff being overly controlled by his Toronto advisors who know nothing about Quebec - is a total disaster for the Liberals. This will get saturation publicity in the Quebec press and will make Ignatieff fall like a lead balloon!

The media will now treat the Liberal non-confidence motion as a total joke - since its so obvious that the Liberals would be caught with their pants down in a fall election.

Stockholm

You got it WCL! Its pretty clear that the last thing the Liberals want now is a snap election! Imagine if the NDP suddenly announced that it was going to support the Liberal non-confidence motion after all? The Liberals would probably freak and have to vote against their own motion.

That being said, i don't think the NDP should play that game, but I have a feeling that one of the reasons why there been virtually no "blow back" at all to the NDP from its base over keeping the Tories going for a while longer - is the simple fact that its so patently obvious that the Liberals have a death wish and are totally unprepared for an election and that the NDP is actually saving the country from an election where only the Tories seem poised to gain any ground.

ocsi

What's to stop Harper from calling an election?

Unionist

His fixed-date election law?

Just kidding. With Michaelle Jean bought and paid for, anything is possible.

Stockholm

It would fly in the face of all the Tory messaging over the past few weeks about how we need to avoid an early election at all cost.

madmax

Very little. However, unlike the blatent power grab in 2008 that resulted in Harper coming up short, the Harper government doesn't have the luxury of fooling the people twice without scrutiny. There would be no free ride from the media.  The media a have no appetite (Money) to cover another election. 

Regardless, the problem with Outremont is the problem that exists throughout the Liberal party. A battle of entitlement and priveledge.  It is that Entitlement which brought IGGY to secure the nomination against the riding association and the democratic process. Undermining democracy in the Liberal party is part of being a Liberal elitist.  Ignatieff was not punished for his elitism in his riding, but was rewarded instead.  Liberals believe they are entitled to Outremont, and are battling over that entitlement rather then hold a contested nomination. 

martin dufresne

Denis Coderre has just announced that he was stepping down as Iggy's Quebec's "lieutenant", after the spat around Cauchon.

ocsi

Unionist wrote:

His fixed-date election law?

Just kidding. With Michaelle Jean bought and paid for, anything is possible.

 

Absolutely!  The Liberals seem to be in disarray and the NDP voted confidence in the government.  Harper could damage both parties by calling an election.  And I think he's just that kind of guy.

West Coast Lefty

That Coderre news conference was nothing short of an atomic bomb launched directly at Iggy.  Coderre strategically inflicted the most damage possible - he professed continued support for Ignatieff so he can't be dismissed or openly attacked, but he blasted the Toronto faction running the show in the OLO.  That means Iggy can either a) do nothing and stick with his brain-dead TO advisors, and the Rae/Cauchon faction or b) make changes and be seen as caving in to pressure yet again.  As Robert Fife said on CTV, the fact that Rae was allowed to openly challenge the initial decision by Iggy on Outremont with no consequences shows that Ignatieff has no moral authority on the party or caucus.

Meanwhile, Coderre is staying in caucus and can do another damaging media scrum at any time - did anybody hear if Coderre is planning to run again in Bourassa? I assume he is.  Plus (saving the best for last), this coming weekend is the LPC's Quebec Section convention in Montreal! Laughing Ignatieff will be there and give the keynote speech, but the room will be filled with Coderre allies and candidates that Coderre recruited who will be aiming daggers at Ignatieff the entire time. 

There is open media speculation that Rae/Cauchon are preparing the next leadership race.  This last month for the Libs is as bas as the worst of the Dion era, IMHO. 

West Coast Lefty

Harper is not stupid enough to directly call an election himself - his entire message box for the last 6 months has been about "staying on track" with the so-called economic action plan, and he just blasted the Lib non-confidence motion as triggering a needless election just as the economy is starting to recover.  For Harper to drop the writ now would be to annihilate his entire strategy since the Jan 2009 budget where Iggy killed the coalition and supported the Conservative budget.

The more likely Cons strategy to trigger the election is the "poison pill" - some new measure on crime or taxes or something else that resonates with the Conservative base and is somewhat popular to centre-right voters, but anathema to Liberal, BQ and NDP core voters so that all 3 opposition parties will have to vote against it. It might come in the budget or possibly before.  Either way, Harper will decide when the next election happens, but I think he'll do it in such a way that another party will be the one to formally trigger the campaign.

madmax

Now that the LPC have stumbled into selecting their Candidate.  How much of this will effect the vote?  Will Cauchon get the big numbers, now that he has proven he can win the battles within the Liberal Party and doing so by coming from the outside?

He got Coderre eliminated and Iggy backtracking from describing him like yesterdays man.  Also many LPC appear to be touting him as the next one and already writing off Ignatieff.  

So... does Outremont have something in the water that creates the illusion of the next leader of a political party resides there?

While I am certain Mulcair is enjoying the Liberal Chaos in message central.  The fact remains this could be his toughest challenge and that the incompetence in Liberal circles is more reflective of Ignatieffs weaknesses rather then problems in the local Liberal Riding Association.

 

 

Stockholm

I just heard Jean Lapierre say that at least one person is running against Cauchon for the nomination in Outremont and that on top of that La Prohon may be changing her mind about running in Jeanne LeBer and may challenge Cauchon as well!

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

West Coast Lefty wrote:

Harper is not stupid enough to directly call an election himself ... The more likely Cons strategy to trigger the election is the "poison pill" - some new measure on crime or taxes or something else that resonates with the Conservative base and is somewhat popular to centre-right voters, but anathema to Liberal, BQ and NDP core voters so that all 3 opposition parties will have to vote against it. It might come in the budget or possibly before.  Either way, Harper will decide when the next election happens, but I think he'll do it in such a way that another party will be the one to formally trigger the campaign.

Agreed. And I think we'll see Harper forcing that pill down our throats sooner than later.

Tommy_Paine

 

Well, enjoy this all you like, but it's bad news for me, personally.

I may have to confront the fact that Bob Rae has been working for the NDP all along, and have to take back all those nasty things I said about him.

 

SCB4

"There is a smugness and complacency about the Liberal Party of Canada which has not really changed  since my first encounter."

Bob Rae,

From Protest to Power, 1996, p. 274

remind remind's picture
Debater

madmax wrote:

Now that the LPC have stumbled into selecting their Candidate.  How much of this will effect the vote?  Will Cauchon get the big numbers, now that he has proven he can win the battles within the Liberal Party and doing so by coming from the outside?

He got Coderre eliminated and Iggy backtracking from describing him like yesterdays man.  Also many LPC appear to be touting him as the next one and already writing off Ignatieff.  

So... does Outremont have something in the water that creates the illusion of the next leader of a political party resides there?

While I am certain Mulcair is enjoying the Liberal Chaos in message central.  The fact remains this could be his toughest challenge and that the incompetence in Liberal circles is more reflective of Ignatieffs weaknesses rather then problems in the local Liberal Riding Association.

I think Cauchon can beat Mulcair.  He wouldn't be running if he didn't think he could.  As Chantal Hebert said on the At Issue panel last week, Cauchon is a big name and will attract a lot of people.

remind remind's picture

LMAO...Herbert said last week on the At Issue panel that, the EDA in Outremont could fit into a phone booth.

flight from kamakura

^ it's even money in outremont.  mulcair outperformed the ndp's quebec score by about 25 points and about 20 points about what the ndp pre-mulcair scored in outremont, that's about as serious as it gets.  can cauchon win?  sure.  but noone who lives in outremont would assume he'd win.  mulcair is almost a household name, it'll be hard to dislodge the guy.

kropotkin1951

Can anyone tell me whether Muclair's staff have been seen as extremely helpful to ALL that walk in the door.  In many close ridings the MP's staff are the difference between a close loss and a close win.  Satisfied citizens tell their friends and that kind of word of mouth is really effective campaigning especially since most people are fundamentally apolitical.

NorthReport
Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

What that was supposed to prove isn't quite clear, NR.

Scott Piatkowski Scott Piatkowski's picture

Debater wrote:
I think Cauchon can beat Mulcair.  He wouldn't be running if he didn't think he could.

There is no doubt that he thinks he can. But that's a whole lot different than saying that he can.

Sean in Ottawa

Stockholm wrote:

You got it WCL! Its pretty clear that the last thing the Liberals want now is a snap election! Imagine if the NDP suddenly announced that it was going to support the Liberal non-confidence motion after all? The Liberals would probably freak and have to vote against their own motion.

That being said, i don't think the NDP should play that game, but I have a feeling that one of the reasons why there been virtually no "blow back" at all to the NDP from its base over keeping the Tories going for a while longer - is the simple fact that its so patently obvious that the Liberals have a death wish and are totally unprepared for an election and that the NDP is actually saving the country from an election where only the Tories seem poised to gain any ground.

Um you don't think a pile of polls all agreeing that the NDP has nothing to gain in an election right now might also be part of it. The NDP may or may not have slipped but it sure has not gained since last fall. The party would have to concentrate resources on retaining seats.

also the NDP is looking at both Harper and Ignatief and both these leaders are unlikely to improve. The more time that goes by the more people will think we can have a change of government-- even tolerate an election. Ignatief does not need to be defeated-- can just let him do it to himself. He also is not making friends with the public. Harper is certain to present something objectionable sooner or later and he does not get likable with age.

Frankly, I don't see Harper wanting to bring in another budget in a minority mandate-- either the red ink or the cuts are going to offend. At some point an analysis of the stimulus funding will have to blow all the rhetorical cobwebs away and we'll see what really was done and the jobs actually created. It won't be pretty.

As well the recovery in the rest of the world is going to expose the fault line in the Canadian economy. The first thing to go up will be the cost of oil (already happening). This will push up the dollar choking any manufacturing recovery here. Our economy was taking shocks a year before the downturn due to the high dollar. A recovery just puts us right back in the same place minus the jobs we lost during the recession.

There is no purpose in an election unless there is a reasonable chance of changing the result and if it were to change right now it would not be for the better. And the prospects for the future look brighter-- next spring looks difficult for the government- it can't run its public relations on empty propaganda indefinitely.

The NDP would be nuts to bring down the government.

As well, the party appears to be recovering a bit in the polls -- I think due to its reluctance to force an election nobody wants. I heard on the CBC this morning they were saying many of the emails are in favour of the NDP saying nobody wants an election, that reporters might be angry with Layton for the flipflop but Canadians see it differently. I would prefer the party be more direct about its motives though-- there is nothing wrong with saying that there is no point in forcing an election that will not change the result right now.

madmax

I can't figure out what the hell the Liberal party is doing.   The tiff breaks out because there was going to be an appointed Candidate as opposed to a democratic nomination selection.  A deal is brokered because there was going to be a contested nomination and the Liberals back Le Prohon over Cauchon. Then they say Le Prohon will go elsewhere and Cauchon is in. Then Its not clear that Le Prohon has any interest in going elsewhere, let alone remain in politics. Then Cauchon finds himself in a CONTESTED nomination race facing a member of the riding association.  Which makes me wonder, why Ignatieff got his sticky fingers involved in the first place. 

Now with his tail between his legs he has fallen on his sword, got rid of Coderre and is cozing up to "the next one".  The person he spoke of in the past tense. Meanwhile Coderre is not going out quietly. 

The Liberals don't deserve this seat (IMHO), but that will be left to the electorate when/if the Liberals can get their act together.

Sean in Ottawa

Unionist wrote:

His fixed-date election law?

Just kidding. With Michaelle Jean bought and paid for, anything is possible.

I don't think Jean was bought and paid for. You may disagree with what she did-- some believe that the coalition would not have lasted long and the cons would have had a majority. She did not share her rationale-- it may be that she concludedit was not stable and an election would have been a disaster.

Suggesting that she did this as an extraordinary favour to the Cons is unfair-- to say she was paid something borders on the libelous.

Going in to a recession with an unstable and unpopular coalition would ahve been a gift to Harper. Letting him wear it another year in a minority does not seem like a gift to the Cons frankly. she may well have made the decision based on the fact that tehre was no credible prime minister. Canadians did not just reject the Liberals they did it largely historically as a rejection of Dion. Layton's party was not strong enough for him to be PM either. No, I think history may eventually record that she made the right call politically.

As far as cosntitutionally, I think she had little choice. We were too close to an election with little indication that the public mood had shifted agaisnt the government. The Harper governemtn had almost obtained a majority-- if it had been weaker, and the opposition had been stornger, if there had been a credible figure for leader of government, if the populaiton indicated enough support, if there had not been so much blowback about Duceppe's role (something that if it had played on further might have seen him as the only winner with greater division in the country).... if, if, if.

You can disagree but you can't say she did nto have reasons-- constitutionally, legally and politically. Sometimes you need to still respect those you do not agree with. Jean has been quiet as well-- no ringing endorsement of this PM either.

Remember the controversy when she became leader? Elevating the sovereigntists to balance of power in a coalition-- yeah that would have ended her. For waht? A con majority? To what end?

 

Sean in Ottawa

SCB4 wrote:

"There is a smugness and complacency about the Liberal Party of Canada which has not really changed  since my first encounter."

Bob Rae,

From Protest to Power, 1996, p. 274

Why have we not seen this in a commercial?

Sean in Ottawa

I don't know why Cauchon would want to run against Mulcair. He may have a shot at beating him but there is also a reasonable chance at being humiliated by him.

You know the NDP is going to pour resources from across the province into this contest. Mulcair does well in the media and makes few mistakes. Mulcair also works in both languages-- I don't mean bilingual-- I mean he can connect. he is a fresh face and remains so after a couple years.

Mulcair can be beaten that is for sure but if I have to bet-- I'd place my money on him.

Stockholm

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Um you don't think a pile of polls all agreeing that the NDP has nothing to gain in an election right now might also be part of it. The NDP may or may not have slipped but it sure has not gained since last fall. The party would have to concentrate resources on retaining seats.

You're right, but typically the NDP base tends to think that we should be "principled" to the point of self-destructiveness. If the NDP was way down in the polls but the polls also said that the Liberals were poised to defeat Harper - I think there would be a huge backlash against the NDP if it was seen as standing in the way of an election where there was a good chance of defeating Harper and the expectation would that the NDP would commit hara-kiri for the "greater good". But, I think that the NDP is saved from that right now because its so patently obvious that the Liberals would lose an election and that NOTHING good could come from an early election.

kropotkin1951

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

SCB4 wrote:

"There is a smugness and complacency about the Liberal Party of Canada which has not really changed  since my first encounter."

Bob Rae,

From Protest to Power, 1996, p. 274

Why have we not seen this in a commercial?

Possibly because SCB4 is the only person who has read it?

___________________________________________

Soothsayers had a better record of prediction than economists

Pogo Pogo's picture

If that was the election result.  Layton would only have to wait a week as Rae would be interim leader after the Liberal held their first caucus meeting.

SCB4

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

SCB4 wrote:

"There is a smugness and complacency about the Liberal Party of Canada which has not really changed  since my first encounter."

Bob Rae,

From Protest to Power, 1996, p. 274

Why have we not seen this in a commercial?

Possibly because SCB4 is the only person who has read it?

___________________________________________

Soothsayers had a better record of prediction than economists

Hah! Bob Rae also wrote a long mea culpa op ed piece about ten years ago where he basically renounced the NDP and just about everything anyone ever thought he ever believed in.

 

Unionist

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I don't think Jean was bought and paid for.

I was referring to her being paid, every single day, to do the dirty bidding of Mr. Harper - which she faithfully does - as evidenced by her shameless encouragement to Canadian soldiers to go get killed and murder others in Afghanistan. Either she is doing this of her own accord - in which case she disgusts me - or she is doing this on orders from Harper, in which case she disgusts me more. Governors-General are named by the government of the day, and it seems to me she loves her job and is prepared to descend to any required depths to keep it. That's my assessment, and you of course are free to disagree.

Quote:
You may disagree with what she did-- some believe that the coalition would not have lasted long and the cons would have had a majority. She did not share her rationale-- it may be that she concludedit was not stable and an election would have been a disaster.

I don't care what she thought. Harper asked her to prorogue Parliament right before a confidence vote. She followed his dictate without hesitation - thus deliberately thwarting the free expression of the House. She could have waited a few days and then had her profound reflections about stability, etc., after having heard what the elected members had to say. Instead, she jumped up and down and said "Aye aye Sir!!!!", giving Harper a political advantage which led to a change in the Liberal leadership and the demise of the coalition.

Quote:
Suggesting that she did this as an extraordinary favour to the Cons is unfair--

Do you have a precedent in mind where a G-G accepted a PM's request to prorogue specifically to avoid a confidence vote?

Quote:
... to say she was paid something borders on the libelous.

As mentioned above, she is paid every single day to do what she is told. Is that "libelous"? I thought it was notoriously well known fact. I'll await the statement of claim.

I'm not suggesting she was given a bonus on this occasion. I'm suggesting it was a freebie. Is that "libelous"?

Quote:
As far as cosntitutionally, I think she had little choice.

You're a little confused. She was not being asked to dissolve Parliament - only to prorogue it. She had every choice in the world, based both on law and on precedent. Had the House voted nonconfidence, she would have then had an entirely different decision to make. In the event, all she did was to throw Harper a lifeline. For free, apparently.

Quote:
You can disagree but you can't say she did nto have reasons-- constitutionally, legally and politically. Sometimes you need to still respect those you do not agree with.

Not when she doesn't respect the obvious will of the House. Remember Charles I?

Sean in Ottawa

I'm not at all confused.

Constitutionally she had to know that if Harper lost confidence there would either be a choice of an election right away or the coalition with its instability-- she did not have a third option other than the one she took. Either one likely would have gone over the cliff with the result of a Con majority. The delay allowed a test to see if the Liberals could manage to stay with the coalition over Christmas or not.

I was in favour of the coalition. I was wrong. She was right. The test she placed was if the coalition could hold together for 6 weeks. The coalition failed because the Liebrals were the weak link. If the coalition had held firm then I could say I was right and she was wrong. You can't pretend that you could have had a stable arrangement with an agreement that could not even survive a holiday break without even having any power. If the coalition had come to power we would ahve had the Ignatieff-Rae-Dion fight running the country. when it finally ran its course there would have been an election and a Harper majority. At the time I did not agree with her decision. Hindsight says she was right. We were wrong. doing a coalition with the Liberals is likely not going to be a good idea in the future either. Stick to accords where you maintain the alternative of an NDP government. Fight for our party and eventually govern. Losing opposition status is only worthwhile if you gain the lead in government. In between, you simply do not exist. There is a German politican who could vouch for that this week as well. Being junior in a coalition is worse than being in opposition.

In retrospect, I do not think Dion was capable of leading a government-- not so much that he was not smart enough-- that was not the problem but he could not attract enough support and was incapable of communicating effectively to obtain it. the coaliton would have hurt the country far more had it taken power and it likely would ahve done serious long-term damage to the NDP.

Unionist

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

The delay allowed a test to see if the Liberals could manage to stay with the coalition over Christmas or not.

Really.

A confidence vote was scheduled for Dec. 1, but the government cancelled opposition day and averted its downfall. The next vote was scheduled for Dec. 8.

What would have happened if the G-G said "no" to early prorogation, and the House had voted non-confidence on Dec. 8?

You think the Liberals would have said, "Whoops, time to dump Dion and get rid of this coalition fast!!??"

You think Jean was just a passive observer, while it is quite clear that she was Harper's instrument to silence and sideline the pro-Coalition faction within the Liberal party.

To repeat, all she had to do was wait till Dec. 8, and then make a decision based on having heard from Parliament - not based on having heard only from Harper and sending the MPs home.

Try to follow the thread of this discussion, Sean. This isn't about whether the coalition would have done well or badly. I said Michaelle Jean was the slavish toady of Stephen Harper, and you said she wasn't. Bring forth some evidence, please - I've brought forth two pieces so far.

Sean in Ottawa

I did you just are not paying attention. Jean may well have concluded that the Liberals did not have the unity or the committment to the coalition for it to succeed. Her job is to make sure Canada has a stable government.

I think the Liberals would have brought down the government on December 8, 2008. I am not at all convinced that they would have managed to stay together and provide government. I think in hindsight it would be fair to believe that Jean could have concluded Dion could not hold his caucus together never mind a two party coalition relying on a third to keep it in power. The result would ahve been an election at an inopportune time.

The day that she creeated a delay in the vote by closing parliament-- which was for 6 weeks over Christmas, people were already wondering if the Liberals could keep it together for 6 weeks. They didn't. Without an explanation from her it is reasonable to suppose this may have been her purpose.

You keep ignoring this question: if the Liberals cannot keep it together over Christmas what kind of government could they offer Canada? If they were fit to govern, they would ahve survived the 6 week breather and brought down the government then. Fact is they were too busy fighting themselves and their coalition partners to provide an alternative government. Given what has happened since, I can't argue with this assessment which was made by some at the time and certainly could have been the rationale for her decision. Since Jean is not Conservative, does not like Harper and has a major axe to grind with the Conservatives who viciously attacked her previously, I think there is a greater likelihood that she thought Dion and co were not fit to govern than her toadying up to Harper.

You are the one bringing the accusation to Jean and you have nothing to substantiate her motive and you are ignoring possible realistic motives that are more likely than the one you proposed. It is a serious, nasty allegation that someone is bought and I think you ahve to back that up. At this point it simply is not credible.

Sean in Ottawa

If she had refused Harper his request -- with him the head of an elected party-- recently elected-- the stand-off would have likely only been resolved with an election. An election then would have been a disaster for the country. she had every right to grant his request for reasons other than his. You don't need to agree with her decision but you have nothing to say that she granted his request out of support for him or his party. The suggestion that the motivating factor was inducement is one that ought never to be made without some clear support in fact. Instead it looks like you are doing it only because you did not like her decision.

Stockholm

We have no way of knowing what would have happened if Jean had refused to prorogue, the government had fallen and the coalition had taken power. What makes people so sure it would "fall apart"? There is nothing that contributes more to unity than being in power. I suspect that within one nano-second of occupying ministerial offices and being able to run departments and appoint people etc... both the Liberals and the NDP would have a gigantic vested interest in making it work.

Pundits have a habit of predicting that any minority arrangement "can't possibly last" and is too unstable etc... In 2005 in Germany, EVERYONE and I mean EVERYONE said that there was NO WAY that a CDU/SPD grand coalition could possibly survive more than a few weeks, that the parties were too far apart etc... what lo and behold it lasted a full four years! I also remember how after haroer first won in 2006 the convention wisdom was that his government was totally unstable and would NEVER last a month since it had no obvious allies among the opposition parties etc... well what do you know, it lasted THREE YEARS and it might have lasted four years if Harper hadn't broken his own fixed election law.

Sean in Ottawa

Leadership.

Canada would have had the weakest PM in history.

My argument is not so much that we know what would have happened but that we cannot assume that Jean could not have done what she did for fear of this happening. You only need to acknowledge that she MAY have felt this way and she MIGHT have agreed for this reason to see that there is no way we can make an allegation that she was bought without some evidence.

Jean might have been wrong-- but there is no evidence that she was bought and that is why I got into this discussion.

Pages