Harper to fill Vacant Senate Seats Before New Year

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Unionist

Caissa wrote:
I'd like nothing more than for Her to say she will take his suggestions under advisement and consider making them on March 1. 

Then write to her and suggest that.

If she'll listen to Harper, she'll listen to anyone.

Wink

The Bish

Bookish Agrarian wrote:

Seriously, how many promises to the core of his party can Harper break and still remain credible? 

Harper's line is that he still wants to pass senate reform, but since the Senate is currently so stacked with Liberals he isn't able to do anything about it, since, oddly enough, the Senate itself would have to pass his Senate reform bill(s).  I don't know if Harper's being honest about his intentions, and I tend to assume that he's not, but it is a legitimate complaint if he actually means it.

remind remind's picture

I agree with unionist, everyone who is against Harper appointing Senators when he does not have the confidence of the House should be writing to the GG, disapproving such a move.

[email protected]

I also believe she told Harper that she would consider the coalition should Harper be brought down in January, or he would not be doing this now.

If Harper thought he was going to get a bounce for looking authortarian and in control of the government, and doing the best for Canada, he again misfired brain wise. He should be coming out publically with policies showing Canadians he is looking after things in this economic crisis, and building a parliament that will work, not trying to shift focus and ignoring the financial meltdown.

 

___________________________________________________________
"watching the tide roll away"

Stockholm

It goes without saying that the Liberals have lessons to offer when it comes to the Senate. The take the prize for packing the Senate with the most grotesque rogue's gallery of hacks and bag men - all being paid $150,000 until the day they die while they spend 100% of their time on partisan political activities for the Liberal Party.

 

The Liberals cry poor - but meanwhile there are all these Liberal Party Presidents and campaign chairs who draw full salaries as senators. Sen. David Smithgets a full salary while managing liberal campaigns. That means that the Liberal Party doesn't need to pay him anything. Imagine how much extra money the NDP would have to play with if party president Anne McGrath and campaign chair Brian Topp had $150,000/year salaries as senators and could run the NDP just for the fun of it with no salary!

Unionist

Stockholm wrote:

It goes without saying that the Liberals have lessons to offer when it comes to the Senate.

That's true - except for one Sharon Carstairs, who had the guts to publicly denounce Harper's omnibus crime bill which the entire House voted for, except Bill Siksay.

But Stockholm, do you agree with my letter (above) to the G-G? Will you join me in writing one of your own?

jrootham

The relevent O'Malley articles are:

Official Senate Speculation Thread

Witness's for the (Senate's) Defence

Wilfred Moore

Filling Senate Seats

 

They are all together in a nice little clump.

George Victor

4. Quiz: What do you call a country which has a pretend Constitution, but where in fact all the real power resides in a single individual who isn't even mentioned in the Constitution?

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

                     Calgaristan?

 

 

Stockholm

"But Stockholm, do you agree with my letter (above) to the G-G? Will you join me in writing one of your own?"

 

Yes, I agree and i will write a letter - not that I expect the GG to be influenced by mail from the public. She is not a politician and it isn't her role to pay attention to public opinion. But its worth a try.

Unionist

jrootham wrote:

The relevent O'Malley articles are:

Official Senate Speculation Thread

Witness's for the (Senate's) Defence

Wilfred Moore

Filling Senate Seats

 

They are all together in a nice little clump.

Thanks, jrootham, I read the first one earlier and will check out the others.

Will you be writing to the G-G? Sorry, I'm in campaign mode...

V. Jara

From the National Ghost (please don't make me post a link):

Irving Gerstein- Chair of the Conservative Fund, top party fundraiser.

Unionist

George Victor wrote:

4. Quiz: What do you call a country which has a pretend Constitution, but where in fact all the real power resides in a single individual who isn't even mentioned in the Constitution?

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Calgaristan?

 

 

Excellent, George - although I would heighten the effect by spelling it "Kalgaristan".

Brian White

Super good points Unionist,

I think you should suggest it for letters to the editor across Canada!

Unionist wrote:

Stockholm wrote:
Are you serioulsy suggesting that you think that an unelected hereditary monarch should defy the will of an elected government? 

No, I'm suggesting she should consider defying the will of a "Prime Minister", who is chosen by his party (not the electors), who has no legal nor constitutional status, and who does not demonstrably enjoy the confidence of Parliament.

Quote:
have you ever heard of the term "responsible government"??

Indeed I have. It means that the Executive Branch should be answerable to the Legislative Branch. In Canada, Parliament - not the Prime Minister, not the Cabinet - is supreme. Responsible government means that the Crown should heed the advice of Parliament. How exactly do you see that happening in this musical-comedy scenario, where Herr Harper rules supreme and Mme Well-Paid Jean bows and scrapes before His Almightiness?

I'm amazed that Canadians: (a) don't read their own Constitution; and (b) allow Responsible Government to be thrown to the winds and reinterpreted as the sovereign reign of the Prime Minister. What a farce - and to be rationalized and defended by progressive people is more than farcical, it is intolerable.

Quote:
We have had it in Canada since the 1840s.

And we're having it still!

Quote:
The ends don't always justify the means and I can't go along with asking the Queen to intervene and stop the PM from doing things that he has the legal right to do.

There you go again. The PM has no "legal right" to do anything. The "legal right" to appoint Senators belongs to the Governor-General. Did you see somewhere in the Constitution where it says: "The above rules are optional and may be changed by tradition."????

If you think the Crown should not act alone, I agree with you. She should act on the express wishes of Parliament. Not some party hack who can be changed any minute by a caucus or membership vote.

madmax

It doesn't sound like Harpers Job Creation plan is working. The announcement of these 18 Senate appointments is going over like a lead balloon, except for the most die hard CPC activist.  No, people aren't happy and if the LPC/NDP were smart, they would eat up this error in judgement. Its not that Harper is wrong, or hypocritical. Its that he is so off base with what the electorate is thinking.  

 

Loretta

I think the NDP is certainly on it:

"The total cost of the Senate is $90,232,000 in 2008-2009 - an increase of 49 million since 1993 - even with a historic number of vacancies. Each Senator costs approximately $336,979 a year."

From: http://www.ndp.ca/press/harper-shows-hypocrisy-on-senate

I found this on the Liberal website:

"Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plan to fill 18 Senate seats before Christmas suggests he is once again putting his own partisan interests above the needs of Canadians at a time of economic crisis, said Liberal Democratic Reform Critic Joyce Murray."

From: http://www.liberal.ca/story_15539_e.aspx

And from a Bloc blog found at http://blogue.blocquebecois.org/2008/12/11/la-logique-de-labsurde-de-ste...

"Stephen Harper s’est toutefois hâté de protéger ses arrières en comblant les sièges pour s’assurer la coopération de 18 fidèles conservateurs au cas où son équipe et lui devraient céder le pas à un gouvernement de coalition."

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Unionist wrote:

Someone explain to me why Michaelle Jean has to appoint whatever Senators Harper recommends.

snip

 Because the law or the Constitution says she has to?

 

Parliamentary and constitutional convention have the force of law.

 

Tell me Unionist, thou principled socialist, would you prefer that the appointed vice-regal exercised the full scope of powers without constraint?

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Politics101 wrote:

I don't believe that the GG has anything to do with the appointment of Senators - it is entirely up to the PM to apoint anyone he likes to the the post.

 

????

The Prime Minister doesn't actually DO anything in our system.  Executive power rests with the Crown and everything that gets done is done by the order of the GG on behalf of HM.

 

By cnstitutional convention, the GG generally follows the advice of the PM - though the GG has the conventional authority to "warn."

 

As to Senators, it has nothing to do with the GG at all - except that she actually has to issue the commission which "summons" the individual to the Senate.

 

A summons to the Senate is an executive act, so the person who DOES it is the GG, not the PM.

 

(Nice to see that it isn't just the raving Cons who have no clue how our system works.)

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

There is a reasonable argument to be made that the GG would have discretion in this situation to reject the PM's advice regarding 18 Senate appointments, based on the lack of clarity regarding confidence.

 

That said, Caissa is correct that the GG's action in consenting to proroguation weakens that argument considerably, since the confidence issue was at least as confused at that time.

 

One could, however, argue that a six week proroguation is a short term measure, whereas the appointment of 18 Senators, possibly as young as 30 years old, has an ongoing affect for as much as 45 years. 

 

I don't think that argument carries the day, but it is worth making.

Unionist

Malcolm wrote:

Parliamentary and constitutional convention have the force of law.

"Force of law" means upheld by the courts - as with the common law, or the British (unwritten) Constitution. We have a written constitution since 1982. There can be no convention that prevails over that. Show me a court decision that says the G-G has to obey the PM in matters of senatorial appointments, or anything similar, and I'll review this opinion. 

Quote:
Tell me Unionist, thou principled socialist, would you prefer that the appointed vice-regal exercised the full scope of powers without constraint?

I already answered your question upthread. In our system of government (as in the British), Parliament is supreme - not the Crown nor the Governor-General. That's why I said:

Unionist wrote:
If you think the Crown should not act alone, I agree with you. She
should act on the express wishes of Parliament. Not some party hack who
can be changed any minute by a caucus or membership vote.

Simply put, the Governor-General must never accept and act upon advice of any individual who does not demonstrably enjoy the confidence of Parliament - particularly not an individual who has secured a holiday break and would use it to make lifetime Senate appointments.

What say you? And will you write to her reminding her of our responsible system of government?

Refuge Refuge's picture

I heard it reported that this is the most number of Senate seats appointed at one time since the senate was formed but haven't found anything on this. Does anyone know the truth of this?

Treetop

Refuge wrote:
I heard it reported that this is the most number of Senate seats appointed at one time since the senate was formed but haven't found anything on this. Does anyone know the truth of this?

 

I wondered the same question.

 

Tommy_Paine

 

The Senate, they say, is the chamber of sober second thought.

Although, I have never seen a breathalyser at the entrance to the senate chamber, so I find even this claim unsupported.

I matters little to me who appoints senators, or who they are.

It is an institution that should have dissapeared with other institutions from the past, like slavery, absolute monarchy, trial by ordeal or witch burning.

Accepting such a post shows an abiding hatred of democracy and the Canadian people.  Appointing people to it, the same.  

I would call them filthy swine, but it is wrong to dehumanize even these people.

And, it gives pigs a bad name.

 

Unionist

Tommy_Paine wrote:

 The Senate, they say, is the chamber of sober second thought.

Actually, it's true. It used to be the chamber of sober minute thought, but they proved unable to sustain that.

 

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Unionist

Remind, it's only $6 million, not $60 million, but your point is well taken.

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remind remind's picture

Loretta wrote:
I think the NDP is certainly on it:

"The total cost of the Senate is $90,232,000 in 2008-2009 - an increase of 49 million since 1993 - even with a historic number of vacancies. Each Senator costs approximately $336,979 a year."

So...these additional Senators will cost us $6,656,522.00 per year, and Harper stated he wanted to cut actual ELECTED political party funding to save 30 million, in these "hard" times. 

The Senators also work only 70 days out of the year, so they make 20k per day of work, in actual money,  nice daily wage, eh, and it costs us another 25k per day just to have them there apparently.

People need to be pointing out the additional hypocrisy of his stating he wanted to save us 30 million, but now he wants to spend more than double that on unelected life-time partronage appointments.

His stating he wants to balance out the Senate seats to make them less Liberal, so they can vote themselves out of a job, also holds no water, 18 seats are not going to do anything by way of that.

___________________________________________________________
"watching the tide roll away"

remind remind's picture

Oops..one too may zeros, thanks unionist!

Moreover, one would think if he was sincere about wanting to get rid of the Senate, now would be the time, not appointing new ones. It would be a Bill that the NDP and Bloc, would have to support him on, and the Liberals would have to go along with it, or wear the public outfall. Even the Liberal Senators would have to approve such a ammendment/Bill, or the Liberal Party would still wear any refusal to get rid of the useless body part, most Canadians want gone.

That Harper is not getting rid of the Senate, and is appointing new ones, says much about the use of the Senate by the Cons and Libs to use as a tool for patronage paybacks, and thus they both want to keep it around.

If the "reformers" are going along with Harper on this, it also says much about who they are.

___________________________________________________________
"watching the tide roll away"

Wilf Day

V. Jara wrote:
This is Harper in panic mode.

Indeed. To repeat myself: Harper's humility on election night in October was a lie from the beginning. He was scared to death. He had just run against the weakest campaign the Liberals have ever run, and had failed to get a majority. He knew Dion would be gone before long, and next May would be replaced by someone much stronger. Someone who would bring Harper down when the time suited him -- unlike after past elections, this new Bloc caucus was sure to vote with the opposition -- and Harper would be out of power.

Harper was desperate. His only hope of holding power was to attack, crush, humiliate and bankrupt the Liberal Party in their brief moment of weakness.

Cancelling public financing of parties was not a miscalculation. It was a desperate move by a paranoid personality who saw himself as backed into a corner and having no other choice, not because he is a natural fascist, but because he fears they will beat him next time.

The 18 Senate appointments are a kamikaze move and should be trumpted as such: he knows the Governor-General will refuse dissolution and call on Ignatieff to form a government.

Who will he appoint? They have to be committed to vote for an elected Senate, his principled cover story. But he is not asking them to resign after the eight-year term he proposes. So Mario Dumont is not too young. Three more loyal Conservatives (if he can find them) from Quebec.  Preston Manning is impossible to avoid appointing, much as Harper might like to avoid it, if he is willing to sit for a province other than Alberta which has no vacancies. A loyal Tory (if he can find one) from Newfoundland and Labrador. Three from BC, three from Nova Scotia, two from Ontario (Julia Munro from York-Simcoe? or Joyce Savoline from Burlngton? or Norm Sterling, who's already 66?), two from New Brunswick, one from Saskatchewan, one from PEI, one from Yukon. 

Unionist wrote:
4. Quiz: What do you call a country which has a pretend Constitution, but where in fact all the real power resides in a single individual who isn't even mentioned in the Constitution?

See the first paragraph of the Constitution Act: ". . . a constitution similar in principle to that of the United Kingdom."

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Unionist, I hadn't yet read your further comments when I posted that reply.

 

Agreed, the GG should only act on advice of a PM who demonstrably has, or can reasonably be presumed to have the confidence of Parliament.

 

Now, on some more picayune points, the morphing of the British North America Act, 1867 into the Constitution Act, 1867 and the Constitution Act, 1982 does not eliminate the standing of existing convention.

 

Someone esle seemed to be confusing Senate Reform (the Conservative position) with Senate Abolition (the sensible position).

 

From a progressive perspective, there is nothing inherently wrong with the idea of a reformed upper house.  The problem is rather tactical and twofold.  And both of the reasons parallel my objection to most proposals for abolition of the Canadian monarchy.

 

First, is the issue of how an upper house with democratic legitimacy affects the functionality of Parliament.  The Senate and Commons have essentially equal powers.  (The Senate cannot initiate money bills, but I think that's just a convention.)  In practice, the Senate always defers to the Commons.  However, if the Senate had democratic legitimacy, those conventions would inevitably be abandoned.  Thus, whenever the Senate and the Commons had different majorities, we would be prone to see American style legislative gridlock.  This suits the neoconservatives just fine since it would make activist government difficult if not impossible.  It also is a recipe for Parliamentary crisis - see Australia in the 1970s - if the government should have the confidence of the Commons but not the Senate.

 

Second, under the new amending formula, either Senate Reform or Abolitionmust obtain and sustain unanimous consent of all ten provincial legislatures, as well as the Commons and Senate.  I think that such unanimous consent for a simple change like abolition is barely possible.  Given that there is no sort of consensus over the composition or manner of election of a reformed Senate, I believe the possibility of achieving and sustaining the required unanimous consent is so remote as to be not worth pursuing.

Unionist

Malcolm, I assert (with some surprise) that I think I agree with all your points.

Under the circumstances, then, what is to be done?

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Bookish Agrarian

Yoohoo-  I'm from Ontario and still available.  Call me Stephen.  Seriously I will vote to abolish the Senate any time you want.  Heck I'll even make it palatable by voting myself and my collegues a big severance package.  Call me Stephen.  I mean it.  I promise not to show up but still cash my cheque, thus ensuring a target of derision for a media campaign.  I tell you Stephen appointing me is one of those win-win things.  I'll take the phone with me to the barn tonight in case you call.

 

I know, I know it would make you seem like one of the most desperate, lying PM in generations to fill the Senate, but I am willing to help out for the betterment of - well nobody, but you and I.  That's okay though we both deserve the best- well I do anyway.  Stephen - for a good time call me!

Wilf Day

Elected senators.

One man one vote.

The one man is Stephen Harper.

Simple, really.

So, who will he vote for?

Benoît Bouchard, Monique Landry, Michel Rivard, Judith Seidman? They might be more likely than either Mario Dumont or Jean Allaire.

 

theleftyinvestor

I've met Suzuki, I've volunteered at the Foundation with his name on it. He already has to walk a tricky line - officially he does not do any of his personal advocacy work and writing from inside the Foundation, and he rents a corner office in their building from DSF. I'm probably quoting some of this wrong. But anyway, much of it is about keeping organizational distance so that Suzuki has the freedom to express political views while DSF is able to hold charitable status.

If Harper offered Suzuki a Senate appointment... well the guy is 72 and would only have about 3 years in there. But I think the amount of organizational upheaval that would be required to accomodate that Senate term while maintaining his and the DSF's legitimacy would be more than it's worth... my gut says he'd turn it down.

The Bish

According to the Constitution Act, Part V, Sect. 38(1) and 42(1), what would be required to change the make-up or selection process of the Senate is not unanimous approval, but rather:

Quote:

a)
resolutions of the Senate and House of
Commons; and

(b)
resolutions of the legislative assemblies of
at least two-thirds of the provinces that have, in
the aggregate, according to the then latest general
census, at least fifty per cent of the population of
all the provinces.

 

Perhaps more interestingly, and I was unaware of this until just now, 47(1) says:

Quote:
An amendment to
the Constitution of Canada made by proclamation under section 38,
41, 42 or 43 may be made without a resolution of the Senate
authorizing the issue of the proclamation if, within one hundred and
eighty days after the adoption by the House of Commons of a
resolution authorizing its issue, the Senate has not adopted such a
resolution and if, at any time after the expiration of that period,
the House of Commons again adopts the resolution.

So Harper does not, in fact, require even a single Conservative Senator to change the structure of the Senate.  I retract my earlier comment in light of this new discovery.

Policywonk

I think it would still require the provinces, and if it were that easy someone would have done it already. In any case, there is not just the 18 vacancies now, but 12 more in 2009 and another 2 in 2010. That would give up to 52 Conservative Senators out of 105, if none of the retirees were Conservative, pretty close to a majority. Plus he could appoint additional Senators under Section 26 of the Constitution Act, 1867, as Mulroney did to pass the GST.

I don't think he will appoint any non-Conservatives, prominent or otherwise.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Bish, only a fool would change the selection criteria without engaging in further reforms. 

 

As it stands, Nova Scotia has more Senators than BC, more Senators than Alberta, more Senators than Saskatchewan and mor Senators than Manitoba - even though all four of these provinces have significantly larger populations.  The same applies to New Brunswick.

 

The four western provinces all have the same number of Senators, even though Alberta's population is about twice the populations of either Saskatchewan or Manitoba - and BC's about three times.

 

Sorry, the geographic imbalance of the Senate means that tinkering is not acceptable.

 

Reform (though I believe it is impossible) is at least a principled response.  Abolition all the more so.

 

Tinkering is utter bullshit.

 

And, sorry folks, either abolition or any meaningful reform will require unanimois consent of the 11 jurisdictions.

Caissa

The Senatre is based on regional representation, thus there is no geographical imbalance. There is a population imbalance for sure.

The Bish

Malcolm wrote:

And, sorry folks, either abolition or any meaningful reform will require unanimois consent of the 11 jurisdictions.

The Constitution Act, which I directly quoted, says 7 out of the 10 provinces, representing at least 50% of the population of Canada, must sign on.  I really don't know where people get this idea that approval must be unanimous.

And yes, abolition of the Senate is the most desirable solution.  All I was doing was correcting my previous statement and pointing out that Harper's rationale for appointing the Senators is not supported by the Constitution Act.

Caissa

I don't support a unicameral system. I'd prefer an elected Senate with each province receiving ten seats and each territory being given 1 or 2 seats. We could have a Senate of comparable size based on ecah province receiving equal representation. Bet you would almost never have majoritarian rule in the Senate under these conditions.

madmax

The sooner the Senate is gone the better

Caissa

The sooner an equal Senate is elected the better. Socialists should support a democratic check on our undemocratice first past the post H of C.

 As a NBer suggesting an equal Senate allows, Nfld, PEI and the four Western Provinces to be on equal footing with us in the Upper Chamber. Rather kind to a bunch of Johnny come latelies to Confederation, I think.Cool

Loretta

The CBC is reporting that the announcement from Harper should come before noon today (EST). I wonder if it means that the GG has already accepted Harper's recommendations or if the announcement are his recommendations.

Stockholm

"I'd prefer an elected Senate with each province receiving ten seats and each territory being given 1 or 2 seats"

There is no point even discussing that - it will NEVER happen. Quebec will instantly veto a senate like that in which Quebec would only have 10 seats out of 105 and Ontario wouldn't be crazy about having the same number of seats as PEI either.

Tommy_Paine

Damnation.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

The only viable Senate reform proposal (viable in the sense that it would have a snowball's chance of passing) is abolition.

 

Reform proposals that retain an altered version of the Senate spring from the pen of modern day Hans Christian Andersons. They are pleasing seeming fairytales with dark import beneath the surface.

Star Spangled C...

They're released the names. You can see them at http://www.thestar.com/News/Canada/article/557349

 

I must say I really like the Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin appointments. Two very fine journalists.

aka Mycroft

Mike Duffy is a horribly partisan journalist which is why it's good he's being taken off the air.

As for Pamela Wallin - she's come a long way from being a Waffler in the 1970s!

Other new Senators include:

-Former Conservative MP Fabian Manning will represent Newfoundland

- Fred Dickson, a lawyer

- Stephen Green, a former chief of staff to Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald

- Michael MacDonald, a Nova Scotia businessman with ties to the Conservative party

- Percy Mockler, a former Conservative MLA in New Brunswick

- John Wallace, a former Conservative party candidate and lawyer who has represented Irving Oil

- Patrick Brazeau, the national chief of the Congress of Aboriginal
Peoples, a group representing off-reserve aboriginals that has been
largely supportive of the Harper government

- Suzanne Fortin-Duplesis, the first woman elected to the Municipal
Council of Sainte-Foy and a former MP for Louis-Hebert from 1984 to 1993

- Leo Housakos, the co-founder of the Montreal Hellenic Chamber of Commerce

- Michel Rivard, a former Parti Quebois MNA for Limoilou, Que. who joined the Canadian Alliance under Stockwell Day

- Nicole Eaton, director and vice-chair of the National Ballet of Canada

- Irving Gersetein, an Ontario business man and chair of the
Conservative Party's fundraising organization, the Conservative Fund of
Canada.

- Nancy Green, an alpine skier who was named Canada's female athlete of the last century by the Canadian Press

- Yonah Martin, a former Conservative candidate in New Westminster-Coquitlam

- Richard Neufeld, B.C.'s former minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Services

- Hector Daniel Lang, a former Yukon MLA

 

Summer

So were anyone's predictions correct or all we all asking for new crystal balls for christmas?

Stockholm

Its basically a rogues gallery of partisan Tory hacks and bagMEN (note that they are overwhelmingly MEN). It must be nice to be Fabian Manning and lose your seat in the House in October and get rewarded with a lifelong senate appointment - i wonder how many other Tories wish they had lost their seats as well so they could get a lifelong sinecure in the senate.

The most disgusting thing of all is to give Duffy a senate seat as a thinly veiled reward for weeks of totally over the top pro-Harper reporting during the recent crisis. I wonder if he was told to do that to shore up his senate appointment chances?

Its interesting that Harper appointed a former PQ MNA to the senate as well. By golly he is MAKING DEALS WITH SEPARATSISTS!!! 

martin dufresne

Duffy may be off the air but he is being put in a position to offset the Grits' control over the Senate. Bad news

Stockholm

It doesn't matter if Duffy is off the air - CTV will quickly find another Tory sympathizer to take his place.

Ghislaine

Stockholm wrote:

Its basically a rogues gallery of partisan Tory hacks and bagMEN (note that they are overwhelmingly MEN). It must be nice to be Fabian Manning and lose your seat in the House in October and get rewarded with a lifelong senate appointment - i wonder how many other Tories wish they had lost their seats as well so they could get a lifelong sinecure in the senate.

The most disgusting thing of all is to give Duffy a senate seat as a thinly veiled reward for weeks of totally over the top pro-Harper reporting during the recent crisis. I wonder if he was told to do that to shore up his senate appointment chances?

Its interesting that Harper appointed a former PQ MNA to the senate as well. By golly he is MAKING DEALS WITH SEPARATSISTS!!! 

 It is not lifelong, they had to agree to an eight-year term and to vote for requiring other senators to do the same. 

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