Saturday, January 06, 2007

Red Rover, Red Rover, we call Wajid over

One last comment on the Wajid Kahn floor crossing before we hopefully put this thing behind us and move on to more important things.

I’ve been mulling over my opinion on floor crossing and I think I can sum it up as this: when someone crosses to the Liberals I’m fine with it, when a Liberal crosses over to someone else I don’t like it.

But seriously? It’s part of our system, and unless and until the rules are changed to prohibit it then it’s perfectly permissible. That’s why, and I’m sorry Jason, but I wouldn’t support petitions or a call for an immediate resignation by a floor crosser to contest a by-election.


Each floor crossing is different. Why did the person cross, what was their motivation? What was the timing? Was there a payoff promised and/or given? These are all things that make a floor crossing odious or not. There are situations where someone can cross for principled reasons. There are situations where someone can cross purely as a naked power grab.


At the end of the day, the verdict will be passed by that person’s constituents. They will have the final say on the motivations and acceptability of their representative’s decision in the next election. That doesn’t mean political partisans shouldn’t make as much hay as possible in the meantime, of course.


Personally, when it comes to floor crossing I think Keith Martin has set the example I’d hope others would follow. Finding his party no longer represented the his principles and the principles he felt it once did, he left the Conservative caucus and sat as an independent until the next election, when he ran and won as a Liberal.


Perhaps I would support some kind of rule change along those lines, but on the other hand I’m not sure you can or should be trying to legislate good character and good behaviour. In the mean time though, the rules permit floor crossing, and so be it.


Kahn’s constituents will have the opportunity to pass judgment on his character and his actions soon enough, and Canadians to pass judgment on Harper’s. That’s the fight we should be focusing on.

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9 comments:

bigcitylib said...

Somebody on Coyne's mentioned that Khan would not run again. Is that total rumour, or has anyone heard similar?

Olaf said...

Jeff,

I’ve been mulling over my opinion on floor crossing and I think I can sum it up as this: when someone crosses to the Liberals I’m fine with it, when a Liberal crosses over to someone else I don’t like it.


Absolutely brilliant. This is basically every partisans position on floor crossing, but they're without the guts to admit it.

And I agree, context is key. To me, Belinda's was absolutely about personal benefit, as was Emerson's. Khan's was slightly less so, as far as we know now. But in the end, floor crossing can be good for the country, and can be bad for the country. It depends.

Lolly said...

Recall, Recall.

We live in a democracy, every 4 or so years we elect MP's. Here in BC there was a momentum called Recall which when actually attempted in several ridings, did not acheive the result it promised.

This country does not need to spend time or expenses on the crossing over of individuals, when there are much more daunting issues that need to be acted upon.

However, I do prefer to hear the MP's that cross to the Liberals rather than the "otherside".

Adrian MacNair said...

I swear to Christ I was going to write an article with the exact same title! Man, original thought truly is dead, is it not?

Glen said...

It's been pretty much confirmed he won't be running again. But hey, things change *shrug*

Anonymous said...

Whether Khan runs again or not, I think this man is a suspicious fella. What expertise to be a special advisor - car dealership and pilot? Where are the credentials here?

He wanted this position - why?

I think he should be investigated. Interesting that he supported Tony Clement in previous election.

Something doesn't feel right. I guess it's just me.

Anonymous said...

Why haven't we heard from Ezra Levant on this one - Khan holds "dual" citizenship (Pakistan/Canada)?

We know how Levant feels about muslims....hmmmm.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Man, original thought truly is dead, is it not?

On the blogsphere, I'm afraid so. And that's not an original thought either... :)

Mrs A.Aslam said...

Mr Khan is a selfish man with no political motives.he is just a business man as you know a car dealer in past.Liberals should be happy to get rid of him