Tuesday Writing Conversation: political blog

In a previous blog entry, Neil takes another look at Harper…

SHOULD HARPER STEP ASIDE?

Are we in a mess or what?

Presumably next Monday the Conservative government of Stephen Harper will be defeated in a confidence motion. Then the Governor-General, Michaelle Jean, will have a decision to make. Will she agree to Harper’s request for a dissolution and a new election? Or will she agree to the coalition’s request to form a new government?

Whatever decision is made, the political atmosphere in Ottawa has been poisoned for a long time to come. Is there any doubt who is responsible for that? Not a shred of doubt.

Last week Stephen Harper had the chance to present to parliament his economic stimulus package to help Canada weather this financial storm. Instead Harper opted to play dirty politics by cutting off public subsidies for political parties and banning strikes in the public service.

The opposition parties were outraged – righty so. They are now determined to get rid of Harper. He is the reason for so much venom from so many sides. He started this whole thing last week by his petty, bullying, control freak politics.

If Harper stepped up to the plate and stepped aside for, say, Jim Prentice, the whole dynamic in Ottawa would change overnight. As the Globe and Mail puts it in its leader this morning: “If Mr. Harper wishes to act in the best interests of his country, it may be time for him to consider removing himself … With a different Conservative leader in place, the coalition could lose some of its lustre – or at least its urgency – for the opposition parties … Switching to another Conservative leader may at this point be preferable to a legacy as the man who gave Canada Prime Minister Stephane Dion.”

With Harper out of the picture, a new Conservative leader like Jim Prentice might well gain the confidence of Parliament and Canada’s economic interests would go forward.

Do you agree?

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