Poor Tony Clement. In the face of a Federal Court decision to expedite hearings on a potential injunction to the census issue, he’s decided to go half-measures and make the relevant linguistic questions part of the mandatory short form. And he’s going to legislate the removal of jail-time penalties for noncompliance for any census, which is really so magnanimous of him.
And while Jack Layton went on Power & Politics to claim victory on the latter part, I’m not giving Clement – or Harper for that matter – any credit on this one. This wasn’t a halfway measure or a compromise. It was the bare minimum they felt they could do to get away from a court ruling against them. Meanwhile, Clement is still insisting that he hasn’t lied about the whole thing (which Bob Rae called him out on yesterday morning in the face of the overwhelming evidence of those document releases), and that everything will still be fine and statistically sound. WHICH IS COMPLETELY FALSE! It makes one wonder if every other group is going to have to go to court to get similar injunctions on the nature of the long-form census, except that this government doesn’t exactly have a track record of obeying the rule of law and complying with court rulings. *cough*Kyoto bill*cough*Omar Khadr*cough*
And in case you were wondering, here are more of the documents on the census decision (parts two and three) and the way the government has been dishonest about the whole affair. And the best Bob Rae quotes from his press conference on the issue: “They spin so much they might as well set up a 24-hour laundromat;” the way they’ve handled this census issue is “creepy, dishonest and underhanded;” and on calling Tony Clement a liar, he said “I’m not making allegations. I’m not an allegator.” Hilarious!
At his own press conference a short while later, Jack Layton argued that there needs to be more flexibility in the stimulus cut-off deadline because of places like Saskatchewan, were infrastructure work has been delayed by flooding and other inclement weather.
Here’s some proof of Conservative MP Shelly Glover’s intellectual bankruptcy –apparently all the “concern” she’s being inundated with around airport security this summer isn’t panning out, since hey, air travel numbers are up currently. Imagine that! But hey, she’s got the official media arm of The Party backing her up on this one, so obviously everything must be okay.
Senator Runciman takes another stab at talking about Senate reform, calling Ontario the key, but he neglects to answer a single one of the problems with the bill on“consultative elections,” even if you set aside the issue of constitutionality. Funny how that happens.
Conservative MP Laurie Hawn shows how many Afghan detainee documents they’ve spent the summer reviewing.
And up in Iqaluit, Michael Ignatieff fired off a few broadsides about Harper’s inaction with regard to his promises about the North.