Silent parliaments, muted outrage: The problem with prorogation

Photo by Chris Young / The Canadian Press

By John Ibbitson, the Globe and Mail, 17 October 2012

Dalton McGuinty’s move to have the Ontario legislature prorogued indefinitely is the latest in a string of decisions by governments across Canada to dispense with the inconvenience of parliament. (…)

(…) Prime Minister Stephen Harper set a very different precedent in December of 2008, when he asked governor-general Michaëlle Jean to prorogue Parliament to ward off the defeat of his minority government. By the time Parliament resumed seven weeks later, the threat had passed.

The Conservatives repeated the manoeuvre in December of 2009, to circumvent the unwelcome attention of a House of Commons committee that was examining alleged abuse of Afghan detainees. (…)

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Photo by Chris Young/The Canadian Press.