Why does Justin Trudeau think he is more entitled than average Saskatchewanians?

April 04, 2017

It is a firm principle of our democracy that the government of the day is accountable to Canadians through our elected representatives in Parliament via the ballot box.  Justin Trudeau’s Liberals have already tried and failed to unilaterally change the way Canadians vote. So now he’s going after Parliament.

Justin Trudeau wants to change the rules of Parliament for his own benefit. It is clear that he has no respect for democracy and wants to shirk his responsibilities to Canadians to make his life easier.

In a “discussion paper” released by the Liberal government, changing the rules of Parliament has been proposed. The Government would like to see a limit on the amount of time parliamentarians can debate bills, the removal of the right of opposition members to filibuster and the elimination of Friday sittings of Parliament.   The Liberal Government has also proposed that the Prime Minister be required to only show up for Question Period one day per week.

Hardworking Saskatchewanians are used to putting in at least five-day work weeks, if not more.  But again, this Liberal “discussion paper” would only require MPs to work four days a week in Ottawa, and the Prime Minister to only work one day a week.  Why does Justin Trudeau think he is more entitled than average Saskatchewanians?

The House of Commons Procedure and House Affairs Committee has been tasked by Parliament to study this Liberal “discussion paper.  Not surprisingly, the Liberal majority on the Committee has already expressed its intention to vote against a Conservative motion requiring that all Committee recommendations on changing the rules of Parliament be agreed to by all political parties with official House of Commons representation.  In short, Justin Trudeau and his Liberals don’t really want to have a discussion on their “discussion paper” - they just want to push their rule changes through to make their lives easier.

The reality is that with his majority government, Justin Trudeau can already push through whatever legislation he wants.  It will just take him time to do so. There are also rules in place that he can use to speed up debate on anything that he wants.  Why then does he need to diminish the role and rules of Parliament and strip the Official Opposition of its power to keep the government in check?

Canadians already know that Justin Trudeau has expressed his appreciation for the Chinese dictatorship.  But Canadians didn’t expect him to put his appreciation into practice.  By taking away the tools that Opposition parties have traditionally employed to keep the Government in check, Justin Trudeau is showing a blatant disregard for being accountable to Canadians. He is also thumbing his nose at parliamentary traditions and conventions which have acted as the pillars of the western world’s great democratic houses.

Just like how Conservatives fought for your right to have a say in how your vote is counted, we will fight for the right of opposition parties to voice their disagreement with the government and for your right to a Prime Minister who works for you more than one day a week.

My Conservative colleagues and I are therefore continue to call on the Liberal government to not proceed with any of their proposed changes unless they receive the consent of all political parties represented in the House of Commons.