maple leaf

Harper Wants to Quit His Job

From September 17, 2008

In 2006, Stephen Harper promised the implementation in Canada of fixed dates for federal elections. This bill, C-16, passed on November 6, 2006, and received Royal Assent on May 3, 2007. C-16 required federal elections on a four year schedule, and unless preempted by a non-confidence motion in the House of Commons, the next election was to occur on Monday, October 19, 2009.

This is what Stephen Harper said at the time:

"Fixed election dates prevent governments from calling snap elections for short-term political advantage."

And, "Fixed election dates stop leaders from trying to manipulate the calendar simply for partisan political advantage."

And in the words of Government House leader, Peter Van Loan, "Never again will the government of the day be able to play around with the date of an election for its own crass political motives."

For much of 2008 the Conservatives had free reign to govern as they wished. But some how it wasn't enough, so Stephen Harper rather unbelievably decided to ignore the law that he had argued for. In the fall of 2008, Harper called an early election, without the consent or vote of the House of Commons.

In other words, Harper believed himself to be above the law, and was perfectly willing to demand an 'unnecessary' snap election for his own crass, partisan advantage.

Yet it remains unclear how a general attitude of hypocrisy and a disregard for the law works out to be an advantage with the voting public.