By Aaron Wherry - Thursday, May 2, 2013 - 0 Comments
That makes, by my count, 12 Conservatives who won’t be participating.
By Aaron Wherry - Friday, March 8, 2013 at 9:00 AM - 0 Comments
The Conservative MPs on the public accounts committee apparently voted down a Liberal motion that would have ordered the finance department to turn over long-term fiscal sustainability analyses produced over the last two and a half years.
The auditor general reported last fall that such analyses existed.
Regularly since 2010 and on occasion before that, Finance Canada has been providing the Minister of Finance with the results of fiscal sustainability analyses that project budgetary balance and public debt in the long term. However, the Department does not prepare these analyses—which indicate how budget measures will impact the fiscal position of the federal, provincial, and territorial governments—in time to inform budget decisions and before budgets are tabled in Parliament. For a given budget, the Minister is not informed of the overall long-term fiscal impact until months after the budget measures have been approved…
While long-term fiscal sustainability analyses have been regularly prepared since 2010, they have not been made public. This lack of reporting means that parliamentarians and Canadians do not have all the relevant information to understand the long-term impact of budgets on the federal, provincial, and territorial governments in order to support public debate and to hold the government to account. Many of the countries that are members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) already publish reports on their long-term fiscal positions.
In October, the Harper government produced a report on the fiscal implications of an aging population. And that’s apparently enough for Conservative MP Daryl Kramp.
Tory MP Daryl Kramp said Thursday the October 2012 report encompassed a number of long-term fiscal analyses stretching back to 2007, and rendered the opposition motion moot. “It’s a published report, it’s all in there,” said Kramp. “That why if there’s working papers, or other things like that are part of a composition of developing a report, they’re probably not there, as they wouldn’t be. That’s the government prerogative to be able to decide what they should or shouldn’t have.”
But Liberal MP Gerry Byrne said it’s preposterous to suggest that a report on a single issue — demographics — would represent the kind of large-scale analysis recommended by the auditor general. “For instance, a report on changing demographics would obviously not deal with any analysis that would also exist dealing with the long-term sustainability of defence procurement spending, of the sustainability of infrastructure spending and other matters not necessarily dealing with demographic concerns,” Byrne said.
In its response to the auditor general last fall, the government said it would start publishing annual analyses for the federal government starting in 2013 (it seemed to decline the auditor’s recommendation the state of provincial and territorial finances be included in some of those reports).
It is perhaps useful here to recall Brent Rathgeber’s understanding of parliamentary democracy.
I understand that Members of Parliament, who are not members of the executive, sometimes think of themselves as part of the government; we are not. Under our system of Responsible Government, the Executive is responsible and accountable to the Legislature. The latter holds the former to account. A disservice is provided to both when Parliament forgets to hold the Cabinet to account.
By Mitchel Raphael - Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 11:22 PM - 0 Comments
MPs and Senators celebrated Chinese New Year at the Government Conference Centre in Ottawa….
MPs and Senators celebrated Chinese New Year at the Government Conference Centre in Ottawa. The event was put on by the Chinese New Year Celebration Committee. The Year of the Snake celebration saw Liberal Sen. Mac Harb was dressed as the God of Fortune.
By Aaron Wherry - Sunday, July 1, 2012 at 11:26 AM - 0 Comments
Canada Day video greetings from Jason Kenney, Ted Opitz, Cheryl Gallant, Peggy Nash, Jinny Sims, Colin Carrie, Joyce Murray, Wayne Marston, Craig Scott, John Weston, Ralph Goodale, Elizabeth May, Robert Chisholm, Claude Gravelle, Christine Moore, Laurin Liu, Ray Boughen, James Lunney, Russ Hiebert, Jack Harris, Peter Braid, Steven Blaney, Randy Kamp and, expressing their best wishes in rather similar words, Daryl Kramp, James Bezan, Randy Hoback, Diane Finley, Ed Holder, Ryan Leef, Bob Zimmer, Dave MacKenzie,John Carmichael, Bal Gosal, Costas Menegakis and Parm Gill.
After the jump, a video from the Prime Minister and statements from Thomas Mulcair and Bob Rae. Continue…
By Aaron Wherry - Thursday, April 19, 2012 at 5:59 PM - 0 Comments
Shortly after 2 p.m., David Christopherson, the fussiest New Democrat, called to order this emergency meeting of the standing committee on public accounts. Around the table sat seven Conservatives, four New Democrats (only three of whom were officially participating in the proceedings) and one Liberal.
Mr. Christopherson proceeded to read aloud the specific standing order of Parliament—106(4) for those of you scoring at home—that allows for four members of any committee to request an emergency meeting of that committee, as had occurred in this case. He asked to make sure that everyone in attendance was in agreement that this is what had happened. There was unanimous agreement—or at least no one audibly objected—and so Mr. Christopherson moved on to explain that there were two motions before the committee.
Here is approximately where the trouble started. Or rather where this place’s latest testament to the vitality of our democracy began. Continue…
By Aaron Wherry - Tuesday, December 6, 2011 at 10:14 AM - 2 Comments
MPs on all sides admit Parliament is failing at one of its primary tasks.
Parliament passes appropriations bills worth billions of dollars without giving them enough scrutiny, say government backbenchers and opposition MPs. “I consider this one of the greatest weaknesses in Parliament. The estimates are tremendously important and deserve a phenomenal amount of scrutiny. This does not happen,” said Conservative MP Daryl Kramp …
This round of supplementary estimates lists $6.6-billion in spending across 68 government departments. Since being tabled Nov. 3, the estimates have been examined in 21 House committee meetings as of Dec. 5, but MPs say it’s a cursory glance. The government spent $270-billion in 2010-2011. “It seems to be treated as a housekeeping issue rather than a serious financial responsibility,” said Mr. Kramp, who is vice-chair of the Public Accounts Committee, and has also sat on the Government Operations and Estimates Committee.
By Aaron Wherry - Monday, October 31, 2011 at 12:16 PM - 21 Comments
Conservative MP Daryl Kramp wants to make sure we all know which date we’re referring to.
Written in myriad sequences between slashes or dashes, dates cause what one mathematician calls “maximum confusion.” They cause us to miss meetings and unwittingly eat sour yogurt. They are so prone to mix-ups, in fact, that the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) made a declaration on the subject in 1988. And here in Canada, a Conservative MP has introduced a private member’s bill that would help settle the date debate, but only, for now, in terms of evidence disputes in court.
“In a perfect world, there’d be one way for all of Canada in the Constitution,” Daryl Kramp, an Ontario MP, half-joked. “This is just a small effort to try to rectify what I consider to be a wrong. It’s a start.” ‘ISO 8601: Data Elements and Interchange Formats’ espouses year/month/day, abiding by the so-called big endian format, which orders the date from the largest element to the smallest (YYYY/MM/DD). Mr. Kramp chose this format for his bill. The ISO directive, embraced by the UN in its international trade protocols and by the European Union (although not by the individual countries), runs 33 pages.
By Aaron Wherry - Sunday, June 27, 2010 at 1:27 PM - 3 Comments
More Twitter commentary from last night and this morning.
Siobhan Coady. Oh Mr. Harper, what have you done to our country?
Carolyn Bennett. still thinking that for a billion dollars we could have had a University Campus with a medical school in Huntsville or the Near North
Daryl Kramp. attended a immigrant laguage graduation-grateful and appreciative of Canada-what a contrast to attitude of violent criminal protesters-sick … black clad criminals do a diservice to the cause of legitimate protest.-behind the mask is thuggery rather than honest principles of dissent
Bryon Wilfert. Master Cpl. Kristal Giesebrecht and Pt. Andrew Miller killed by an IED in Afghanistan. People allowed to demonstrate because of these heroes … The Black Bloc – anarchists – attack symbolism of capitalism. Legitimate demonstrations overshadowed by these thugs. They hide their faces.
By Aaron Wherry - Tuesday, June 8, 2010 at 1:28 PM - 68 Comments
National Newswatch is reporting that Conservative MP Rodney Weston has voiced an opinion today that is not entirely dismissive of coalition government.
A year and a half ago, fellow government backbencher Daryl Kramp was similarly open-minded.
By Aaron Wherry - Friday, May 21, 2010 at 12:34 PM - 30 Comments
Government house leader Jay Hill, a spokesman for the Board of Internal Economy, laments the attention the current debate over MP expenses has received, but acknowledges it might be discussed further at the board. Fisheries Minister Gail Shea isn’t concerned either way. Conservative Daryl Kramp says an auditor general audit is inevitable but unnecessary. The NDP caucus is split: Charlie Angus says it needs to be worked out with the auditor general, Pat Martin, Peter Stoffer and Peter Julian say open the books, Yvon Godin is obstinate. Liberal Marlene Jennings calls for disclosure. Liberal Bryon Wilfert defends the status quo.
By Aaron Wherry - Monday, September 14, 2009 at 1:05 PM - 11 Comments
From Conservative MP Daryl Kramp’s Twitter feed.
darylkrampmust cancel my trade trip to China–environmental technogy due to possible confidence vote by opposition what a load ofzxemxcmekgkly
By Aaron Wherry - Wednesday, May 6, 2009 at 7:30 PM - 17 Comments
The Scene. Bob Rae was lingering near the microphones after Question Period, taking questions on Ruby Dhalla’s nanny troubles, when he decided to venture an analogy
“I’ve said many times that politics is more like hockey than it’s like ballet,” he mused. “If you perceive a weakness, then it’s no surprise to anyone that people would try to take partisan advantage of that.”
The government side has taken a few opportunities these past two days to raise the matter of Ruby Dhalla in the House. On each occasion, a backbencher was sent up solemn-faced and seemingly on the verge of tears to read into the record details of the various allegations and ask that a minister rise to explain in further detail how precisely abhorrent the whole thing is. Today, both Helena Guergis, minister of state for the status of women, and Jason Kenney, the immigration minister, were given the chance and carried out their duties with obvious concern.
“Having been at this business for nearly 30 years, I’m not surprised by anything that I’ve seen or heard in the House of Commons the last couple of days,” Rae continued. “I think the point has to be made though that we don’t do public show trials in Canada and we don’t try and hang people on the floor of the House of Commons.”
Indeed, Canada did away with public hanging shortly after it became a country. Thus, we were left with hockey and politics to satisfy our need of bloody spectacle. And so Question Period still serves some purpose. Continue…
By Aaron Wherry - Wednesday, April 1, 2009 at 1:23 AM - 41 Comments
The Scene. After the last of several government MPs had been sent up before Question Period to cast aspersions on Michael Ignatieff’s character, the Speaker decided to interject. Calling for order, Peter Milliken told Conservative Daryl Kramp that he might “find himself suspended” if tries again to defy a recent ruling against the use of Parliament’s time to attack a fellow MP.
Those on the Liberal and NDP benches applauded. The government side pouted and, after Question Period, once more asserted its right to freely disparage by doing just that.
“This is politics. This is not a Harvard classroom,” explained Kory Teneycke, the Prime Minister’s press secretary. “You have to be able to take it as well as give it.”
Above all else, it seems, one’s ability to “take it” is the highest measure of public leadership in Stephen Harper’s Ottawa. Take, for instance, the Question Period that followed the Speaker’s warning. Continue…
By Aaron Wherry - Friday, June 20, 2008 at 4:13 PM - 0 Comments
Rick Norlock. “The reason for this tax shaft is that the Liberal leader needed to find a way to pay for all his unbudgeted spending promises.”
Daryl Kramp. “Canadians will not be fooled. They know when they are getting the shaft and not the shift.”
Jeff Watson. “Canadians and the environment get the shaft.”
Stephen Harper. “This is different in that this will actually screw everybody across the country.”