Continuing with the end-of-session roundup
of queer MPs, I chatted with NDP MP Libby Davies last Thursday after QP.
Q: What was the highlight of your fall
A: For me it was watching our new MPs get
in the game. It’s been incredible to watch them, because I remember what it was
like when I was a new MP, and I was someone who’d been involved in politics
municipally for quite a while, and I felt overwhelmed by this place. So
watching our new MPs, suddenly we’re the official Opposition, and we’re up
there in question period, and I feel like we’ve found our legs. And here we are,
almost in our fifth week of a five-week run, and usually by that point, people
are getting tired and crabby, and yet our team is still raring to go.
Q: What would your low point be?
A: Definitely for me, it was feeling the
absence of Jack Layton. I know how I felt when I first came back, and I sat
next to him for eight-plus years, and I had a million and one little
conversations with him, after his question, or whatever. It was feeling that
great hole, and it’s been difficult.
Q: In terms of your committee work, what’s
been keeping you busy?
A: That’s been very frustrating, because
now, of course, the Conservatives have a majority and we’ve found it very
frustrating that every single thing that we propose, they basically turn down.
Yesterday, for example, we tried to have a motion approved that the committee
take one meeting to look at the Seder agreement and how it impacts drug costs
in Canada, and of course they don’t want to deal with it. We’ve heard some good
witnesses on various issues, but I really feel like the Conservatives on the
committees are just coasting – it’s almost like they’re just killing time, and
some important questions like what happened with the 2004 health accord, what
have we learned from it, what’s going to happen with the 2014 health accord,
what about drug safety, drug affordability? These are all issues that they
haven’t wanted to deal with.
Q: What are you planning on doing for the
A: I’ll probably be back home. At this
point I’m not planning on going anywhere. January is going to be quite busy.
There’s the premiers’ conference in Victoria on healthcare, so I will go there
– Victoria’s close, so it’ll be easy to get there. I’m hoping we’ll have a
presence there and have something to say, so I’m getting ready for that. There’s
a lot going on with the health file, and as the health critic, I plan to be
pretty busy in January.