NDP to test Dion’s confidence, in himself

Five confidence motions are on the order paper today:

March 5, 2008 — Mr. Layton (Toronto–Danforth) — That, in the opinion of the House, this government’s budgetary policies have been marked by an unbalanced approach of corporate giveaways to the big banks and big polluters and have failed to address the priorities ordinary Canadians care about, such as health care, housing, infrastructure, manufacturing and forestry, climate change, child care, Aboriginals, women, seniors, poverty, and therefore, that this House has lost confidence in this government.

March 5, 2008 — Mr. Layton (Toronto–Danforth) — That the House note this government’s two years of inaction in the fight against poverty in Canada and failure to build on such initiatives as the Canada Child Tax Benefit, affordable housing, literacy, and the Supporting Communities Partnership Initiative and that for these and other reasons the House has lost confidence in this government.

March 5, 2008 — Mr. Layton (Toronto–Danforth) — That the House welcome the opening expressed by legislators and presidential candidates in the United States that the North American Free Trade Agreement should be re-examined with a view to ensuring respect of high environmental standards and basic workers’ rights as well as the sovereignty and democratic accountability of the three partners, ensuring that working and middle-income families, and not only corporations, are the beneficiaries of increased trade and investment.

March 5, 2008 — Mr. Layton (Toronto–Danforth) — That the House regret this government’s failure to live up to Canada’s international climate change agreements, and it’s [sic] refusal to bring forward for debate and vote, the Clean Air and Climate Change Act, the climate change plan called for by a majority vote of the House, and that therefore the House no longer has confidence in this government.

March 5, 2008 — Mr. Layton (Toronto–Danforth) — That, in the opinion of the House, this government has failed to introduce policies which will diminish the inequality between men and women, in particular by its refusal to provide adequate resources and policies governing child care; legal assistance; long-term care; home care; health care; support for women’s equality seeking groups; support for seniors; support for Aboriginal and minority women; pay equity; reform of employment insurance; support for preventing violence against women; public housing and transportation and other services so vital to the hard working women of this country, and therefore the House has lost confidence in this government.

It’s an NDP opposition day tomorrow and one of the confidence motions above will be picked to be debated. Late yesterday, a well-connected New Democrat told me that they’ll be advancing the fourth motion of those above (the confidence motion on climate change) for debate and make Dion vote against the motion, in order to allow the government to survive. This will embarrass Dion into accepting the Conservative government’s progress on climate change. A Liberal MP expressed in conversation yesterday that the reason why they didn’t defeat the Conservatives on the budget was because they “didn’t want cause a Harper majority”.

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