Jacket
2 min

QP: Cue the scripted outrage

The Toronto
Star
can reasonably claim the title of newspaper of record for the day, as its story on what kinds of guns will no longer be registered – including
semi-automatics and sniper rifles – kicked off QP. Nycole Turmel and Jack
Harris both asked about this revelation, and Harper, in his only
appearance in the House for the week, assured them that there was a determined
process for the classification of such weapons, and that process was one
instituted by the previous government. Toews, in answer to Harris, called the Star story “misleading.” Bob Rae in his
turn asked a trio of questions about EI premium increases and making tax
credits refundable, to which Harper gave his usual retorts about how the
Liberals keep voting against tax credits – despite the fact that Rae was asking
him to do just that.

Round two was largely about food banks:
Jean Crowder first asked about them in general, then Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet
and Mike Sullivan asked about their use by disabled people, Irene
Mathyssen asked about seniors, Marie-Claude Morin asked about use in Quebec, and Dennis
Bevington asked about use in the North. While Kellie Leitch read the very same
talking point, increasingly huffily as time went on, saying that the best help
for poverty was jobs, Alice Wong took the question on seniors – with
hilariously disastrous results. Holding her script to her face, Wong declared that
she would take no lessons from the opposition – and roars of laughter resulted.
Once the House calmed down, she started again from the top of her script. We
never did hear the rest of her answer. Mathyssen, outraged, read from her own
script in turn. Yeah, it was one of those days. Moving on, Frank Valeriote
berated the government for holding only three committee hearings on the bill to
kill the Canadian Wheat Board (Anderon: 16 hours of debate is adequate), and Irwin
Cotler and Denis Coderre asked why the government was proceeding with the
omnibus crime bill when Quebec’s youth justice system has shown to be more
effective (Nicholson: We have plenty of support, including this vaguely worded
poll!). Hélène Laverdière asked about the agreement to repatriate Omar Khadr
(Toews: Transfers are done on a case-by-case basis and will be done in due
course), and Christine Moore asked about safety with F-35s (Fantino: A mash of
unconnected talking points that didn’t flow).

Round three saw questions on the alleged
overspending on grants to the Perimeter Institute, the G8 legacy fund, those
aforementioned weapons, safe drinking water on First Nations reserves, the new auditor general, the rail service review, that veteran about to undertake a
hunger strike, and the proposed train in Toronto between Pearson and downtown being
diesel-electric.

Sartorially speaking, snaps go out to a
clean-shaven Dany Morin for his pink shirt and black suit, and Rona Ambrose for
her fitted black jacket and top. Style citations go out to Christine Moore for
her poorly cut red jacket (less-than-three-quarter sleeves, too short and too tight) with
a matching skirt and a black lace top, and to Brent Rathgeber for his brownish
suit with an insipid lemon-yellow shirt and a greenish-hued tie.

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