Transcript of NDP conference call

Judy: Judy, and when I hear the beep stopping, I’m going to start the meeting.
Hello?

Judy: Hang on everybody, you don’t even need to give your name yet, I’m going to do a check in a second.
Hello?

Judy: Hi there, it’s okay, it’s Judy, we’re all set.
Okay Judy.

Jack: Hi Judy, we’re all, we got a bunch of caucus members here, we’ll just wait for your instructions, we’ll leave it on mute in the meantime.

Judy: Okay. Alright, I think I’ll start, uhm, it’s Judy, we’ve got exactly one hour and no more. We’re going to run this meeting very tight. I want everyone to put your phones on mute, also please do not anytime during this call, put your line on hold, because that causes a noise for everybody. We’re going to give an update, an over view from Jack, a report on what’s happening procedurally from the House, generally from Libby, and then thirdly a overview on the issue of platform and policy, from Kathleen, and then a chance for each caucus member to give a very succinct and brief point to indicate their concerns or issues that they would like to see raised by our team as we prepare any further documents. So, as you all know, we have our next meeting as our regular meeting Monday at ten o’clock, in Ottawa, we will have a chance there to have a more extensive roundtable that in through the week, so please don’t feel you have all the time for questions and concerns, but we will deal with that on Monday, so without further ado, let me call on Jack who must be very tired and going non-stop for the last three days, we appreciate what you’re doing Jack, and I think we’re all excited to get an update. Thanks, Jack.

Jack: Thank you very much, uh, keep the myth alive that I’m exhausted and working incredibly hard (laughter) I appreciate you relaying that, I was asleep by ten o’clock last night, and had a very good night, a very good sleep, and that was my Friday night. So, an update on where we are, the, uh, we’re in the middle of a very historic time, and we’re playing a key role in it, in some ways a catalytic role actually, because as we think back, we’ll realize that nobody really imagined that it would be possible for the Bloc Quebecois, the Liberal party of Canada ever to enter into any kind of a discussion around the future of the country and it turned out that we were the glue, and spotted and prepared for the opportunity, and had taken the steps that were required so that when that opportunity arose, which was when Mr. Harper made his disastrous strategic error, by not providing stimulus to the economy, and instead playing political games, we were able to move, and things began to move very quickly, however, many obstacles remain in our way, and so we’re in a real battle now. The negotiating process, I am, by the way in very very regular touch with the leader of the Liberal party, and the leader of the Bloc, frequently every day. At the same time, negotiation processes are underway, and in fact as we speak, our negotiating team that I’ve named to meet with the Liberal negotiating team are discussing the mechanics of a coalition government, and the form that it would take, the structure of cabinet, the way in which the logistics of a coalition government with the Liberals and the New Democrats would work, the key roles, and dispute resolution mechanisms, timelines, et cetera.
05:23 –
All of the logistics issues that you would expect would be a part of such a discussion are being negotiated now we hope that that part of the negotiations would be completed today. Our negotiating team consists of Brian Topp, who negotiated as a senior member of the Romano team in Saskatchewan, negotiating a similar coalition with the Liberal party there, and of course you know Brian is our campaign co-chair director. Ann McGrath, in her chief of staff role, she’s also wearing the president of the party hat still, and so she’s got several hats on at the moment. Ed Broadbent, Alan Blakely, Dawn Black, as a member of caucus I’ve selected to participate in this process, someone that I happen to know is also respected and trusted by key Liberals, Tom Mulcair, as our Quebec lieutenant, and Carl Belanger. Tom and Carl are the negotiating team with the Bloc team, and Brian and Dawn Black are negotiating with the Liberal team. We’re starting with two party talks, this will resolve itself into a tripartite conversation before the weekend is up, and the goal is to produce by the end of the weekend, an agreement on the machinery of the coalition, which would be signed off, particularly by the NDP and Liberals, but endorsed by the Bloc, and an agreement on policy program for the coalition, that would have three party agreement. I can’t go into the details on all of this stuff, particularly the machinery, but it’s in the process of negotiation, and we could consume an awful lot of time speculating about it, so I don’t propose that we spend that time today on this particular matter of question. But instead, there’s a golden opportunity today, for you to provide input on the policy matters, you can be assured that we have looked at our program, we’ve looked at our platform, we’ve looked at what I’ve been saying about economic stimulus, we’ve been in close consultations with the leadership of the labour movement around some of their key ideas and they’ve been providing terrific support, including at a high-level early morning meeting this morning, so much of what you would have want to see, it’s probably already there, you’ll hear a bit more about it later, but there’s an opportunity to touch base with all of you, because in the end, you’re going to be intimately a part of the delivery of all of this, and so that’s why we’re having this meeting at this point in time.
08:32 –

Jack: I made a list Judy, so I’ll take a whack and you’ll say if I’ve missed any…

Judy: Ya. Meetings, confidentiality, what can be said. Go ahead.

Jack: First, do MP’s have to be in Ottawa until we have a better sense of the potential confidence motion stakes. You have to remain agile. And with Ottawa being the base. Uh, and so when you’re organising your community meetings make sure there’s a speaker phone facility, or a webcam. Secondly, I believe that we should get immediately into the driver’s seats on organizing these community meetings, you have people who worked on your campaign who are exactly the kind of people, whether in labour movements, labour councils, uh, childcare groups, environmental groups, these are people that need to be pulled together. You get them together, and then they’ll take it from there, it doesn’t have to be your meeting, it shouldn’t be your meeting, but of course you’ll be there as the MP, and you’re part of the coalition, and you’re consulting with the community to make sure they’re open, so if anyone wants to come and protest and say it’s a bad idea, be there to make a real news event out of it, the youth comes with the emotion in favour of the coalition and an action plan coming from Thursday night, particularly focused on the weekend, with petitioning, and phone in shows, and god knows what else, a letter writing, one of the goals here is to of course, recruit as many names, addresses, emails, phone numbers as possibly can, because this coalition will need the support of these people, and then we will need their support when we get an election. Now, will there be an independent NDP caucus, yes. BQ stability issues, worry about BQ potentially being off-side, we’re taking that very much into account.  We have numerous strategies designed to deal with it, I actually believe they’re the least of our problems, but in case I’m wrong, let’s just say we have strategies, this whole thing would not have happened if the moves hadn’t have been made with the Bloc to lock them in early, because you couldn’t put three people together in one, in three hours.  The first part was done a long time ago, I won’t go into details, and the managing expectations, lists from groups, actually, the wisest people in the groups are already coming to the conclusion, some of them are in direct contact, saying probably wouldn’t be too helpful if we had long lists of stuff, right? What we really want is just to get Harper out and get the new group in because it’s going to be a hell of a lot better for everything we believe in, correct? Correct. So let’s stay on that track, and not start debating whether or not it’s twenty five percent change or fifteen percent change over here, let’s get them out, on the basis of unity not the basis of division. Somebody asked about Bill Casey, absolutely, in the game, uh, on confidentiality, we now have to get out and defend the idea of the coalition. This is not a secret that it’s been discussed, the various elements that are in it, you can say it’s all about getting the economy going, and transforming the economy for the twenty first century, use everything that you’ve seen in my speeches up until now, that you’ve all been using so well particularly when I’ve seen you on panels, and by the way, our team on panels, everybody, staff and MPs, rocking, absolutely rocking doing us proud, so yes, there is a coalition, we’re fighting for it, we’re trying to make it happen, we think it’s a good idea for Canada, the majority of Canadians voted to go in a different direction than Harper’s taking us, you can’t trust him, no matter anything, throw him out. What about the legitimacy of the democratic process, yeah, what about it? He was given a minority, and he refused to work with the other parties, he had 38% of the vote and he’s trying to govern like he had 100% of the power, he’s the one who’s got democracy wrong, not us. So do not be defensive, to work among what we are doing is to give effect to the wishes of the majority of Canadians, have no doubt about that. The coalition for Canada, I love the idea, it could be a deal-breaker for the Bloc (laughter) so if we don’t go, we call it “The Coalition for Canada and Quebec,” (lots of laughter).  Well, welcome to the real world of….that’s not funny

Jack: And let me come to, I know it’s complicated, so let’s just be wise about how we put this thing together. I think that there were many good comments that were developed from this, right from Aboriginal, which was on our mind, right through to many of these other suggestions and we will do our very best to put this together. And I’ll just say one other thing about the issue of the Bloc: nothing could be better for our country, than to have the fifty members who’ve been elected to separate Quebec to actually helping to make Canada a better place. I think we just approach it on that basis, and say we’re willing to make Canada happen, here’s other things that we’re going to be investing in and transforming together, they’re willing to work with us, we’ll accept that offer. What will be important to point out is that this will be an NDP-Liberal coalition, which is supported by the Bloc, with policy ideas that the coalition is bringing forward. Okay? And that’s going to be helpful to you in your dealing with those that have concerns, because they, you can see where Harper’s going here, he’s going to say it’s the socialists and the separatists and the opportunists getting together. You know? Those are their talking points, and so we just need to push back. I want to thank everybody for the input, I would get going this weekend on getting groups together, start talking about organizing those Thursday meetings, act as the catalyst to make it happen, and then just let it go, it’ll roar, and it’ll be very exciting. If you’re in a larger city, and there’s several of you, or if you’re in the largest city and you’re on your own, act as the catalyst anyway, chances are there’s a bunch of Liberals in the other ridings on whom we want pressure placed, as I mentioned at the outset of the conversation. I guess we’re at the end.

Judy: I just want to add one thing, and that is so the major thing is here that the message we’re focused on the message, so that’s not confidential, what’s confidential is strategy, the discussion, details, the speculation about the other parties and their motivation and what they will or they won’t do, we should not talk at all about war rooms, or campaigns in that sense. We’re building, trying to create a coalition government that will be a Liberal-NDP coalition that will be supported by the Bloc and that’s the message that we want to get out, nothing about the discussions in the background, and when in doubt, call, probably Brad, and Brad on that issue and on the whole issue of the campaign, and organizing meetings, people will want to reach you quickly, what’s the best way?

Jack Harris: Judy, Jack Harris here, I know it’s a structure question, but I’m at a loss at this point to know whether we’re talking about a short-term, quick economic stimulus coalition, or are we talking about something that could last two or three years, this is kind of important in our own minds, as well because aside from economic stimulus of course, this coalition will have to govern on every part of the government, of the legislative of the –

Judy: Okay, let me ask Jack to answer that and then Brad, you give the best contact information.

Jack Layton: Longer term. Not short term.

Judy: Now, Brad, you’re going to be in demand, what’s the best way to get to you quickly?

Brad: For folks that are going to be holding panels that we’re setting up, we’re going to be briefing you and your media office, for your press secretaries, the press secretaries have been divided into thirds, so every member of caucus has been assigned, so those folks are going to be available to you, and working very closely with me, and I discourage anyone from phoning me, the smartest move would be to give me as much heads-up as possible, I’m on a panel in two minutes, is highly unhelpful, and I will fail you miserably, and I know some times that situation has to happen and it’s understandable, but obviously calling me on my cell is the fastest way or by sending me an email, at brad@ndp.ca

Judy: Alright, and is it you, not just on panels, organizing meetings, events, here at the grassroots level, who’s the best person?

Brad: It will not be me, I will not be able to assist with your meetings on the Thursday night, we will assign a member of the team to that.

Comments

comments

  • greenleaf

    What a bunch of snakes! Evil, trying to break up the country, and cause chaos in this great country of ours. Stephen Harper is the best Prime Minister we have ever had, and if these incompetence's arrange to overthrow the democratically elected government, that a majority of the country voted for, heaven help our country! They are acting worse than Mugabe! E-mail the GG immediately and ask her not to allow it!

  • http://myblahg.com Robert McClelland

    Real nice. Now the Nixonian Conservatives are recording the private meetings of the opposition. Harper and his band of dimestore thugs are done. Bring this government down now!

  • Grumpy Voter

    Why is the PMO recording another party’s caucus conference call

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    My guess is that someone from ndp caucus gave out the number and conference code

  • http://wakinguponplanetx.blogspot.com Candace

    @Robert: “Real nice. Now the Nixonian Conservatives are recording the private meetings of the opposition. Harper and his band of dimestore thugs are done. Bring this government down now!”

    Right, let's completely ignore the fact that Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe have been caught in a Rove-ian move, shall we?

    Conference calls involve passwords – if you have the number & the password, you attend the call. The host of the call is able to see who (or what phone #, anyway) is on the call and if they are too stupid to do a roll call, particularly on a conference call of this nature, then they are DEFINITELY too stupid to run our government, thanks.

  • wallyj

    It also could be that one of the NDP'ers with morals left is as disgusted by this plot as the rest of us,and leaked it out.

  • Paul

    That is so funny…Nixonian???
    Disgruntled Dipper gives up tape and it becomes an evil NeoCon conspiracy…laughable

  • Tim

    The NDP are caught and their apologists are out in full force on the CBC's and The “Red” Star's websites. It's quite funny how Taliban Jack will negotiate with whomever will give him a shred of power whether it's the Taliban or the separatists.

    I also find it ironic and amusing that the lefties are crying that 60% of voters did not vote Conservative in the recent election yet they conveniently forget that the Chretien Liberals had only 41% of the vote in 1993 and even less at 38% in 1997 and yet formed majority governments. Lefties must suffer from some kind of selective memory syndrome.

  • Ann

    I wonder how old Ed Broadbent feels about being broadsided (sorry for the pun) with this devious revelation. It's doubtful that he'd condone this….waiting in the reeds until an opportunity arises to overthrough the Government of Canada. Oh..that sounds like opportunism? Quite shameful…but beward…Grewal was quite justified in his attempt to trap the Liberals with his tape, but where is he now? It will come down to how the media chooses to handle this story. Rosemary Thompson of the CTV seems to be concentrating on the “secret taping” rather the the issue of the secret opportunistic deal. FYI the Conservative website has it covered…It should be made clear that it was a Canadian citizen that taped this – not a Conservative MP.

    BTW – the Liberals probably want to participate with Jack, because they do believe the global recession with eventually come to an end – with the US solutions – and the Liberal Party can come out looking the hero. All a matter of timing…

  • http://www.bloggingtories.ca ferrethouse

    God help us. The NDP and the Bloc Quebecois leading our country.

  • http://canadian-firebrand.blogspot.com firebrand

    The Rovian – or should I say Nixonian – move is taping a meeting of your opponents. Did Stephen Harper authorize this? What did he know and when did he know it?

  • Anon

    Mr.Taylor you know many people in the Conservative party.What is the word on Proroguing parliament?
    In my opinion no matter what the Conservatives do this week the opposition parties will say that it is not enough.
    So I'm asking you this question do you think that Mr.Harper will prorogue Parliament? I would appreciate if you can answer the question thank you!

  • Your Lawyer

    Interception of Communications

    Interception

    184. (1) Every one who, by means of any electro-magnetic, acoustic, mechanical or other device, wilfully intercepts a private communication is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years.

    Saving provision
    (2) Subsection (1) does not apply to

    (a) a person who has the consent to intercept, express or implied, of the originator of the private communication or of the person intended by the originator thereof to receive it;

    (b) a person who intercepts a private communication in accordance with an authorization or pursuant to section 184.4 or any person who in good faith aids in any way another person who the aiding person believes on reasonable grounds is acting with an authorization or pursuant to section 184.4;

    (c) a person engaged in providing a telephone, telegraph or other communication service to the public who intercepts a private communication,

    (i) if the interception is necessary for the purpose of providing the service,

    (ii) in the course of service observing or random monitoring necessary for the purpose of mechanical or service quality control checks, or

    (iii) if the interception is necessary to protect the person’s rights or property directly related to providing the service;

    (d) an officer or servant of Her Majesty in right of Canada who engages in radio frequency spectrum management, in respect of a private communication intercepted by that officer or servant for the purpose of identifying, isolating or preventing an unauthorized or interfering use of a frequency or of a transmission; or

    (e) a person, or any person acting on their behalf, in possession or control of a computer system, as defined in subsection 342.1(2), who intercepts a private communication originating from, directed to or transmitting through that computer system, if the interception is reasonably necessary for

    (i) managing the quality of service of the computer system as it relates to performance factors such as the responsiveness and capacity of the system as well as the integrity and availability of the system and data, or

    (ii) protecting the computer system against any act that would be an offence under subsection 342.1(1) or 430(1.1).

    Use or retention
    (3) A private communication intercepted by a person referred to in paragraph (2)(e) can be used or retained only if

    (a) it is essential to identify, isolate or prevent harm to the computer system; or

    (b) it is to be disclosed in circumstances referred to in subsection 193(2).

    R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 184; 1993, c. 40, s. 3; 2004, c. 12, s. 4.

  • Liz J

    This is Canadian politics? Boy, we've got problems.

  • Bob

    So, does this mean the Conservatives spy on their political opponents?
    Who else are they spying on Mr Taylor?

  • Dennis

    Just saw Iggy interviewed on Question Period. He is hedging his bets so doggedly that he doesn't know whether he's coming or going.

    When he claims not to know what's going on in the negotiations I started to laugh. I can't believe that he's literally out of the loop.

    Judging by what we now know about the NDP/Bloc negotiations that have been going on for some time, the idea that the opposition is doing this because of the government's lack of a “stimulus” package is just a smokescreen.

    At least two of the parties in the coalition have been in cahoots for a while, and were only waiting to get the third party on board before springing the surprise.

    When asked about the details of a coalition stimulus package, Iggy made some remarks about collective bargaining rights for public employees and the lack of equal pay for equal work legislation. What's that got to do with any “stimulus”?

    More evidence that the coalition is based on nothing but a grab-bag of contradictory, useless ideas. These clowns are clearly making this up as they go along.

  • Bridget

    Who recorded this call? Do you think that this is an example of ethical politics?

  • Ted

    I have not seen a party and a Prime Minister act this unethically and this desperately since Martin in 2005.

    Of course, the Leader of the Opposition back then was:

    - telling the world that the government needed to be defeated because it was refusing to work with or even consult with the opposition parties and that a minority government's “first obligation” was to get the support of Parliament
    - plotting with the socialists and the separatists to overthrow the government
    - asking the Governor General to consider allowing the Opposition parties to form a government without an election
    - offering an independent MP “financial consideration” for his vote

  • Powell lucas

    Oh, goody, goody. We’ve proven that Jack Layton is a lying, two-faced, double-dealing piece of slime that would sell out this country for the sake of gaining power. That puts him right in step with Dion and Harper. All polticians have the moral fibre of a serial rapist. They’ll sell out their country, probably their families, and certainly their principles just to gain that lever of power. Had I been aware that the Conservatives were attempting to pull of the same coup, in league with the same separatists, to get rid of Paul Martin they certainly wouldn’t have got my my vote in the last election. They won’t ever get it again, nor will any of these cretins who try to pass themselves off as moral human beings. This country is so ill-served by the entire gang of thugs who inhabit the halls of parliament that it’s no wonder kids are growing up without a set of values to guide them.

  • Powell lucas

    Oh, goody, goody. We’ve proven that Jack Layton is a lying, two-faced, double-dealing piece of slime that would sell out this country for the sake of gaining power. That puts him right in step with Dion and Harper. All polticians have the moral fibre of a serial rapist. They’ll sell out their country, probably their families, and certainly their principles just to gain that lever of power. Had I been aware that the Conservatives were attempting to pull of the same coup, in league with the same separatists, to get rid of Paul Martin they certainly wouldn’t have got my my vote in the last election. They won’t ever get it again, nor will any of these cretins who try to pass themselves off as moral human beings. This country is so ill-served by the entire gang of thugs who inhabit the halls of parliament that it’s no wonder kids are growing up without a set of values to guide them.

  • Lord Kitchener's Own

    Ted,

    Things like this are only unethical when OTHER people do them, not when the Tories do them. By definition, whatever the Tories do is ethical. It's genetic with them. They're incapable of being unethical.

  • Bob

    Jack co-ordinating with the Bloc. Not surprise there. He’d do it with the Taliban. Treason comes to mind. I guess he wants to strengthen his position when negotiating with the Libs. Hmm. I think that Mr. Harper still has something up his sleeve. I can hardly wait. Let them have it Mr. Harper.

  • Bob

    Jack co-ordinating with the Bloc. Not surprise there. He’d do it with the Taliban. Treason comes to mind. I guess he wants to strengthen his position when negotiating with the Libs. Hmm. I think that Mr. Harper still has something up his sleeve. I can hardly wait. Let them have it Mr. Harper.

  • http://blog.ederek.net dbo789

    Regards to the legality of the call, here's the real rundown.

    The only way a conservative party member could have access to the call is if the password was provided to that member by someone in the NDP party. As a representative of the party, giving this information to the conservative would imply authorization for that person to participate and listen to the call. Therefore, it was legal under:

    (a) a person who has the consent to intercept, express or implied, of the originator of the private communication or of the person intended by the originator thereof to receive it;

    Secondly, in Canada, it is legal to record a telephone conversation as long as one party (in this case, the conservative) is aware of the taping. All parties or the originator of the call do NOT need to be informed.

    Morally questionable? Not in the current circumstances. Legally wrong? Absolutely not.

  • Lord Kitchener's Own

    Like THIS:

    September 9, 2004

    Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson,C.C., C.M.M., C.O.M., C.D.Governor General
    Rideau Hall
    1 Sussex Drive
    Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A1

    Excellency, As leaders of the opposition parties, we are well aware that, given the Liberal minority government, you could be asked by the Prime Minister to dissolve the 38th Parliament at any time should the House of Commons fail to support some part of the government’s program. We respectfully point out that the opposition parties, who together constitute a majority in the House, have been in close consultation. We believe that, should a request for dissolution arise this should give you cause, as constitutional practice has determined, to consult the opposition leaders and consider all of your options before exercising your constitutional authority.

    Your attention to this matter is appreciated.

    Sincerely, Hon. Stephen Harper, P.C., M.P.
    Leader of the Opposition
    Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada
    Gilles Duceppe, M.P.Leader of the Bloc Quebecois
    Layton, M.P.Leader of the New Democratic Party

    THOSE consultations between the Socialists and the Separatists (and the Conservatives)?

    TOTALLY KOSHER.

  • Lord Kitchener's Own

    Except for two things.

    One, if an invitation was sent it was CLEARLY done in error (and I'd love to see the Tory in question try to argue “I thought they WANTED me to listen in on their caucus meeting, how was I to know I wasn't really invited?”).

    And (more importantly) Two, what does “party to the conversation” mean? 'Cause apparently the NDP held a roll call at the beginning of the meeting, and I'm pretty sure the Tory on the line didn't say “Hey, designated Tory spy checking in!”. So, do you count as a “party to a conversation” if you stay silent (and deliberately, so) and no one who's actually speaking knows you're on the line? 'Cause I can't imagine that's the case.

  • Ann

    Apparently it's not a person from the PMO or the caucus…but a member of the Conservative Party – which is any individual who pays their membership fee.

  • Ann

    Robert Fife on CTV just now said he's heard that if tempers don't cool, and Opposition don't lay off coalition talk before Dec. 8th, Mr. Harper will prorogue Parliament until he is in a position to formally release the Budget.

  • http://blog.ederek.net dbo789

    The question is, was it sent in error, or was it actually provided by a rouge caucus member? Despite party solidarity, I wouldn't be surprised if some NDP member somewhere isn't overly pleased with having to bow to the Bloc, and may have provided the information as an anonymous protest.

    As for the second matter, I would debate that a roll call was held in the sense that you're implying. On any conference call I've been on, you are required to state your name at the beginning of the call, which is recorded, but those names aren't often checked until after the call is over, if at all. Even if they had been checked, the person doing so may have just been looking for MPs names, or assumed that the caller was another NDP staffer. Going through on the line and saying “Joe Blow” “Here”, would simply take too long, especially if they were on a tight schedule, as implied by 'Jane's' comment “we’ve got exactly one hour and no more. We’re going to run this meeting very tight.”

    Ultimately, I will agree that it may be a matter for the courts. While It is perfectly feasible that the Conservatives didn't break any laws, it is only fair that the circumstances surrounding it be examined.

    That said, you can't just discount the transcripts and content of the call because some party member made a bad decision. This, once and for all, proves that the opposition didn't want to overthrow the government because of the update, they just plain wanted to overthrow the government. Which is in itself, in my opinion, distasteful, immoral, and an affront to the central idea of democracy.

  • T. Robert Wolfram

    The NDP has conspired with the Bloc and the Liberals over the last 6 weeks to overturn the results of the election (without the going to the trouble of actually having the Canadian people pass judgment again on their ideas and policies) and somehow it is the Conservatives that are to be vilified for letting that squalid cat out of the bag.

    Why not just claim that because the Sore Losers are saving us $200,000,000 by sidestepping an election, that makes their shameless power grab all right? After all, it's not like we just spent $200,000,000 to find out it wasn't they whom the people wanted to run things…right?.

  • Free Thinker

    I think that voters have a right to know about the backroom deals being constructed by Jack Layton and the separatists. It's called dirty politics, NDP style. Plain and simple.

  • Anthony

    The NDP leaked their conference call code because they don't believe in their leader. The Cons recorded the call because they don't believe in integrity.

  • UnionStayshyn

    Given the Tories' disgust for the Charter of Rights and Freedoms (see: the replacement of the Court Challenges Program with a 'Bake Sales for the Charter' funding program) I'm not surprised at these tactics. As Scott Reid pointed out in that great article in the Globe the other day (that's getting tons of attention on Facebook, etc), Harper will do ANYTHING to keep power. His game isn't leadership, it's power.
    Oh and I'm not so naive to suggest this kind of thing wouldn't have been utilized by former Liberal leaders, but at least they didn't think the Charter should be used to line a beaver cage.

  • xpdoug

    Really?
    Well, maybe if you could bring yourself to replace silly hyperbole with a rational argument you might get some traction here. Failing that, it's just more “…blah…blah…liberal…blah…blah…blah, etc”
    Good luck with that.

  • http://streetadvisorconsulting.blogspot.com markalanwhittle

    Your Excellency the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean,

    I would like to advise you on the constitutional crisis created by a coalition of political parties in opposition of the elected minority Conservative government.

    Therefore, In light of the rampant speculation in the media of these developments, I took some time to read up on the procedure for dissolution of Parliament at your web site.

    It seems it's the responsibility of the Prime Minister to come to you and submit an instrument of advice on the matter.

    Furthermore, I submit to you that until that happens the 'opposition coalition' has no constitutional standing in the government because it does not include all the opposition parties. This is exclusionary and counter to your mandate to do no harm to the interests of all Canadians and their respective provinces.

    Canadians like me, and seniors on a fixed income, have been tightening our belts as best we can and expect no less from the government. For example, my gas bill has doubled so I was forced to turn down the thermostat a bit to off-set the added cost of heating my home in the winter.

    Money saved by the federal government could help fund a stimulus package for our faltering economy. Now is not the time for panicky financial decisions and rampant spending nor wholesale replacement of government because the opposition parties don't want to give up their political welfare in the form of a vote subsidy.

    This is the issue that caused them to panic, not the state of the economy.

    To say this coalition exists because of the lack of a economic stimulus package forthcoming from the elected government is disingenuous at best and venal political self-interest at its worst.

    You, on behalf of all Canadians, should have nothing to do with this partisan political hackery.

    I would humbly suggest that you should reject this attempt to usurp the elected government of Canada by the New Democratic Party of Canada in concert with the Liberal Party of Canada to the exclusion of the political party that represents Quebec and simply tell our elected Politicians get back to work.

    Respectfully,

    Mark-Alan Whittle

  • http://blog.ederek.net dbo789

    You know, because plotting to overturn a democratically elected government, regardless of if it is technically legal, isn't about gaining power at all.

    Give yourself a slap, of course its about power, its ALL about power. That's kinda the driving force behind politics anywhere in the world. As for the court challenges program, how, in the vaguest sense of reality, does the government supporting one side of legal battle via the CCP make any sense to you? Reality Check: That is not the government's job or mandate, nor should it be. The government is in place to support the good of all Canadians, not to give money to every Joe Blow that wants to take someone to court.

  • http://blog.unionstayshyn.com UnionStayshyn

    Wasn't that a book by PM Steve's former CoS, Ian Brodie? I believe he wrote a book called, “The Charter of blah…blah…blah…Rights…blah…blah….blah…and…Freedoms, blah, blah!”. Anyway, whatever it was called, I'm sure you gave it all the traction you could muster. (Speaking of Brodie, has anyone heard from him since November 5? I'm worried for the guy!)

  • http://www.starvingarts.ca Daniel E

    ok, so im all about a coalition government, hopefully to see some interesting change etc. but ya, Im no genius, but a simple “ok, guys here’s our disclaimer, please dont tell anyone what is said here” approach to confidentiality is quite unimpressive. this ain’t the 90’s guys, google telecommunications and security…find some interesting future talking points, for upcoming coalition conference calls.

  • http://www.starvingarts.ca Daniel E

    ok, so im all about a coalition government, hopefully to see some interesting change etc. but ya, Im no genius, but a simple “ok, guys here’s our disclaimer, please dont tell anyone what is said here” approach to confidentiality is quite unimpressive. this ain’t the 90’s guys, google telecommunications and security…find some interesting future talking points, for upcoming coalition conference calls.

  • ken

    http://www.rallyforcanada.ca/ …. niiiice. Yeah, go with that. Take one distortion (of an illegally recorded but actually harmless leak), add a pinch of lie (“The Bloc Quebecois … will determine who the next Prime Minister will be.”), garnish with hot-button words and whip to a frenzy til the bottom of the frame is reached.

    I'm actually glad that the phone call was leaked. It's refreshing to actually see a party earnestly working with other parties. There will unfortunately not be any comparable leaks from the Conservatives, and anyway it would be boring… just a couple minutes of Harper mumbling to himself, then barking out some orders, and the sounds of bowing and scraping.

  • Beer and Popcorn

    It’s about time this came to a head, because, frankly, it seems to me we have been on this path for quite some time.

    There are two very distinct paths here – the Coalition, led by the NDP, who, as they outline, are looking to get together the environmental groups, childcare groups, anti-poverty activists to shout down and muscle out the elected government through a deal that was struck some time ago and the timeline of which was moved up when the government moved to cut public funding to political parties.

    Our political process is largely dictated by these groups that Mr Layton outlines in my view. They are the ones that show up to rallies that the pro-left media show on their media assets, they are the ones who show up to debates and shout down the Conservative candidates. Even though they are a small number they are who sets the political agenda in this country.

    Now, even though they have not been elected, they want power and are willing to throw Canada under the bus to get it.

    I can’t even let myself think of the danger of this coalition in government, but I hope in the coming weeks the Canadian people will see the true colours of these parties.

    I also hope the governor general will realize that the Canadian people did not vote for this coalition, which seems to me to stand for nothing except for a lust for power at any consequence.

  • Beer and Popcorn

    It’s about time this came to a head, because, frankly, it seems to me we have been on this path for quite some time.

    There are two very distinct paths here – the Coalition, led by the NDP, who, as they outline, are looking to get together the environmental groups, childcare groups, anti-poverty activists to shout down and muscle out the elected government through a deal that was struck some time ago and the timeline of which was moved up when the government moved to cut public funding to political parties.

    Our political process is largely dictated by these groups that Mr Layton outlines in my view. They are the ones that show up to rallies that the pro-left media show on their media assets, they are the ones who show up to debates and shout down the Conservative candidates. Even though they are a small number they are who sets the political agenda in this country.

    Now, even though they have not been elected, they want power and are willing to throw Canada under the bus to get it.

    I can’t even let myself think of the danger of this coalition in government, but I hope in the coming weeks the Canadian people will see the true colours of these parties.

    I also hope the governor general will realize that the Canadian people did not vote for this coalition, which seems to me to stand for nothing except for a lust for power at any consequence.

  • Ted

    Except… the “government” was not elected. 143 individual MPs from one party were elected and 165 MPs, the majority, who are not of that party were elected.

    As Stephen Harper told us in 2005, the “first obligation” of a minority government is to seek consensus among the opposition parties and not govern as though it had a majority. Also, he and his coalition with the NDP and the Bloc Quebecois advised the Governor General that she had an obligation to consider all of her options which included putting the Conservatives in power without an election, but with the support of the NDP and the Bloc.

    The House is asking for nothing more than Harper asked for in 2004 and 2005.

    The current government has shown that it does not care at all what the opposition parties think, and so the current government does not have the confidence of the House due to its own actions. Therefore, it must fall and Harper must go the Governor General and tell her so and the Governor General has a constitutional obligation to determine if Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition is able to obtain the confidence of the House. If it cannot, then we must have an election and, if it can, it must be allowed to form the govern.

    Anything else would be anti-democratic and unconstitutional.

  • Ted

    Except… the “government” was not elected. 143 individual MPs from one party were elected and 165 MPs, the majority, who are not of that party were elected.

    As Stephen Harper told us in 2005, the “first obligation” of a minority government is to seek consensus among the opposition parties and not govern as though it had a majority. Also, he and his coalition with the NDP and the Bloc Quebecois advised the Governor General that she had an obligation to consider all of her options which included putting the Conservatives in power without an election, but with the support of the NDP and the Bloc.

    The House is asking for nothing more than Harper asked for in 2004 and 2005.

    The current government has shown that it does not care at all what the opposition parties think, and so the current government does not have the confidence of the House due to its own actions. Therefore, it must fall and Harper must go the Governor General and tell her so and the Governor General has a constitutional obligation to determine if Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition is able to obtain the confidence of the House. If it cannot, then we must have an election and, if it can, it must be allowed to form the govern.

    Anything else would be anti-democratic and unconstitutional.

  • JEN

    I blame the MSM for covering up the opposition parties plans to take over the country so they can steal again, raise taxes, chase every major corporation out off canada; shut down the oil-sands and tar sands (the backbone to our economy), help the bloc separate from canada with millions of dollars as a presents and more to go to them when separated, for aided and bedding the liberals and NDP IN THIS COUPE D'ETAT COALITION. The MSM will get money for being good in protecting the oposition parties for years.

    Stephen Taylor, from now on, you are the reporter for all canadians, you should attend meeting whenever or whereve the parties go and you will ask questions which the MSM have refused to do for years; you will ask the prime minister “PM, canadians are asking why the liberals have not returned the millions stolen from them by the liberals; they want answers and since the MSM is not doing the job I will do it.”
    PM, How come can the liberals make 'drastic cuts' to the most important areas like the health, education, E.I, tranfere payments to provinces, military, at the same say they have created a surplus. Surely if the liberals had looked after these areas throughout their years in OFFICE mostly likely PM, you would not have inherited the extent (bulk)of the expenditure(expenses) today.”

    Stephen Taylor, the PMSH made severals appearance in the world scene and has been applauded for his insight to which he was given standing ovations and not one of these piece of 'GOOD NEWS' was ever heard or seen on the MSM, from where many canadians depend on for any good news about our prime minister. THIS IS CALL MANIPULATION AND AS LONG CANADIANS REMAIN OBLIVIOUS, THE MSM CAN PROMOTE THE LIBERALS WITH EASE. NO MORE STEPHEN. IT ENDS.

  • JEN

    because an email was sent to a conservative member to participate a conference with the NDP

  • Rich

    @Robert the Conservatives did not illegal tap into the NDP conversation.The Conservatives received an email outline the call and the number to dial; which they did, and which they were entitled to do. The Dippers did not even take roll call. Don't blame the Conservatives for the Dipper ineptitude.

  • Beer and Popcorn

    Ken – the part where he said he didn't care about the issues and that the NDP should get out all of their cronies to the 'public meetings' really seems like earnestly working with the other parties, doesn't it?

    Jack – we see your true colours shining through…

  • ken

    What, the Conservatives aren't rallying the troops? Sorry, we already saw Mr. Giorno's memo… (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RT…)

    Anyway, actual politics is messy. If you like hot dogs, don't watch while they make weiners.

    There are MANY legitimate arguments to be made for why the proposed coalition would not be a good idea for Canada… yet our host has chosen to go with hyperbolic and misleading head copy on “rallyforcanada”. He apparently has a low opinion of the intelligence of the conservative base, and has absolutely nothing in his message that would convince Liberals troubled by the coalition to come onside.

    Harper has wounded himself gravely and if he actually cares more about Canada than his own grasp on power, he should back down, start cooperating with all parties to develop economic stimulus, and prepare the ground for the next Conservative leader, cos he's TOAST.

  • buddy

    “that a majority of the country voted for …”

    Sorry, but 36% does not constitute a majority.