The new name follows criticism over what some considered a partisan remake of the official Government of Canada website, which now has bold splashes of Tory blue and prominently features photographs of Prime Minister Harper.
Of course, Elections Canada is completely separate from any federal ministry and any partisan interference.
Elections Canada used to use yellow to reflect a neutral colour. Why not stick with that model?
OAKVILLE – Stephane Dion has challenged the Prime Minister to clarify his view on abortion, threatening to reignite the debate as Canada careens toward a fall election.
The Liberal leader issued his challenge to Stephen Harper while answering a question at a town hall meeting on Wednesday night in Oakville.
The event was billed as a discussion of Mr. Dion’s carbon tax plan, but a member of the audience instead asked his views on the Unborn Victims of Crime Act. The private member’s bill would make it a criminal offence to harm an unborn child during an attack on its mother.
Mr. Dion said he opposed the proposed legislation because it might infringe on women’s access to abortion.
“We need to protect everyone against crime, but, at the same time, it happens that I believe in the rights of women to choose and I have a lot of respect for the people who have a different view,” he told the crowd.
Mr. Dion then called upon Mr. Harper to state his own position on abortion.
And the latest in the Parliament Hill window series from Liberal MP Tom Wappel:
Is that a sign in Tom Wappel’s office? It looks familiar to another sign that sparked some controversy.
Is it really?
It is! Hooray for double standards!
Mr. Dion should ask some of his Toronto area MPs about their views. These photographs were taken today.
UPDATE: From Monday’s (8/25) Hill Times we learn that Tom Wappel took the sign from Rob Anders and put it up in his own window.
Re: “Tory MP Anders forced to remove ‘pro-life’ from East Block window” (The Hill Times, July 14, p. 1). Your article really intrigued me, as, in my 20 years as a Member of Parliament, I have never heard of a policy regarding what can or cannot be put in the window of Parliamentarians’ offices.
So I did a little digging. I contacted the Speaker’s office, the Sergeant-at-Arms Office, Canadian Heritage, the House Accommodation Services Office, and the Conservative Whip’s Office. Guess what? There is no policy!
Since there are signs in numerous other windows which were there before Mr. Anders removed his, and which are still there (e.g. “Veterans for Obama ’08 in the Confederation Building), I wanted to know why Mr. Anders’ sign (“Defend Life”) had been singled out for attention and removal. It turns out it was because someone had complained about it. Why? Since other signs remain in windows, it is clear that there have been no complaints about other signs. Thus the complaint has to be not about a sign in a window, but about a sign in a window which was assumed to be a pro-life sign in a window.
Well, I am proud to be pro-life. Being so is not a criminal offence (yet). Expressing my pro-life views is not illegal (yet). What can be more fundamental in the very seat of our democracy than our Charter cherished freedom of expression?
So, I have borrowed Mr. Anders’ innocuous sign and put it in my window in East Block, and there it will stay.
… — Tom Wappel
Why is Wappel free to express his views while Anders was rebuked? The Conservative “hidden agenda” narrative is ready to be resurrected by the media at a moment’s notice. It was a Liberal senate staffer that complained about the sign. What is her opinion of Wappel’s ability to express his opinion on the issue?
Conservative MP Rob Anders was recently forced to remove a “pro-life” sign from his East Block office window on Parliament Hill after receiving a formal letter of complaint from a Liberal Senate political staffer and after the chief government whip told him to take it down.
The large blue and white “Defend Life” Knights of Columbus sign could clearly be seen for a few weeks before it was removed on July 2 and one day after abortion rights activist Dr. Henry Morgentaler was named to the Order of Canada among 75 for one of Canada’s highest honours.
Amélie Crosson, an assistant to Ottawa Liberal Sen. Jim Munson, sent a formal letter of complaint to Mr. Anders, all MPs, Senators, assistants, party leaders, whips, and party caucus services, on June 27 after she noticed the sign on June 23 while walking to work.
Ms. Crosson told The Hill Times that in her 10 years on the Hill, she could not remember ever seeing a sign in a window before and after she found out whose office it was, she sent a letter of complaint to all MPs.
“All of us who work here are passionate about politics and specific political issues, but if we all start to decorate the exterior of our windows,” she wrote, “in no time, our Parliament Buildings will look like a collection of university frat houses.”
UPDDATE: I’ve received an email from Team Fry. It has been reprinted with permission from it’s author Tim Campbell.
My name is Tim Campbell, and I am the staffer in Hedy Fry’s office who put the sign in the window behind my desk. The poster was given to me by a friend (coincidently a veteran) who attended Barack Obama’s rally in Ohio in March. Dr. Fry was unaware that the sign was in the window because I frequently keep my curtains closed, and she enters her office through a different door.
Effective this morning I have removed the sign – however, I would like to say two things. First, I can see at least two “Stephen Harper ’06” signs in the windows of the middle section of the Confederation Building, and I hope that your outraged readers have sent similar e-mails to these MPs expressing their wishes to have the paraphernalia removed. Second, I have triple checked and our office (nor anyone else that I’ve talked to for that matter) ever received a memo from either the Speakers’ Office, the Sergeant at Arms, or the Minister of Public Works actually requesting things be removed from the windows following the Rob Anders incident. Should such a memo have surfaced I would have, of course, obliged immediately.