Wednesday, October 25, 2006

A QP double play today

I’ve taken to watching QP in the evenings recently (yeah, I know, I’m a nerd) and I must say, from the sampling I watched last session the Liberals do seem to be coming out with a bit more piss and vinegar these days. And I dare day, it’s about time.

Yesterday I blogged on Rona Ambrose’s misrepresenting what the Canadian Lung Association had to say about her so-called clean air bill. She left the impression the CLA is all for the bill, when in fact they actually have serious concerns, and feel it is not strong enough and not soon enough.

I was pleasantly surprised to see Liberal MP John Godfrey ask the following question in QP today:

John Godfrey
: In an attempt to salvage her clean air disaster, the Minister of the Environment has been misquoting the Canadian Lung Association. What the Lung Association really said was that it “has serious concerns that the proposed approach under the Clean Air Act will not reduce emissions of green house gases quickly enough to lessen the health effects of climate change.”

Mr. Speaker, misleading the house like this shows this Minister’s utter disrespect for Parliament. Why did the Minister of the Environment misrepresent the real position of the Lung Association?

A very good question John. Here’s what Ms. Ambrose had to say in reply:

Rona Ambrose
: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate that the honourable member likes to pull things out of the Lung Association’s press release (like their actual position on the issue? –ed) but they did say, in fact, that they are in favour of the clean air act to regulate indoor air because it’s one of the largest health risks associated with lung cancer for non-smokers. They are concerned about some of the health impacts of climate change, and we’re working with them and many other organizations to address those issues.

Pretty weak Rona, but thanks for playing. Again, for those interested here’s the actual CLA statement on the Conservative legislation.

And this morning I began a new blog feature, question of the day, proposing the question of the day I would ask were I an MP. Again, probably coincidence, but here’s the question Liberal MP Omar Alghabra asked in QP today:

Omar Alghabra
: Mr. Speaker, it’s mid-term election time in the United States, and the Republican television attack ad has outraged many Canadians. The ad says, in part, “let Canada take care of North Korea. They’re not busy.” Is this what Canadians should be expecting to be the outcome of the cozying-up to Mr. Bush by this Prime Minister and his Conservatives?

I have a question for the Prime Minister. Will he call his mentor, President Bush, and demand this insulting ad be pulled from the airwaves immediately, and stand up for Canada, but for real this time?

Indeed, a fine question Omar, I must say. Here’s what Baghdad Bob, er, I mean Peter McKay said in reply:

Peter McKay
: Mr. Speaker, I would suggest that the country has been greatly benefited by improved relations with the United States, as well as other countries, when it came to important and contentious trade irritants and other issues. And I would ask the honourable member to perhaps cast his mind back to some of the attack ads that were run in the last election campaign by his party directed at people here in his own country before he starts making these dispersions.

Pretty lame, Peter. But at least he didn’t deny the ad exists, so that’s something anyway. Jason, I think he should have gone with your answer myself.

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Bailey said...

Apparently, Michael Wilson did talk to the White House about the ad:

Globe & Mail

Canada complains to White House about ad

Canadian Press

OTTAWA — The Canadian government has lodged a complaint with the Bush administration over a Republican election ad that belittles Canada as a global freeloader.

Canada's ambassador to Washington registered his displeasure over a Senate election ad from Tennessee that implied Canada doesn't pull its weight in international matters.

Michael Wilson expressed Canada's concerns in a phone call Wednesday to a White House official, said a Canadian government source.

Anonymous said...

Peter has Condi on his speed-dial, but she's not picking up... the biatch!
Peter will get back to Canada on the latest national or diplomatic news as soon as he's got his hound under control, or you know who yanks his leash.


life just good

Jason Hickman said...

Thanks for the compliment. And to think, I came up with my answer for free.

Of course, the Speaker would've undoubtedly cut off my mic if I'd gone on & on. And besides, given that Wilson ended up complaining about it, I'd have been cut off at the knees, and you'd spend all day swearing affidvits and calling for my resignation.

Eric said...

Doesn't seem like such a great set of questions by the Liberals to me?

Firstly, the entire 'call your mentor' bit was just silly. And attacking the Republicans for bashing Canada is, as McKay pointed out, hypocritical considering Martin's performance and attack ads.

On the Lung Association, I read the full article and it does indeed sound like they support the bill almost wholeheartedly. There are concerns but overall they sound impressed. Ambrose was pointing that out.

In which case, I'd classify this as a double play alright, Liberals thrown out at first and second.

Jeff said...

Bailey, looks like he did, which makes Peter's response in QP all the more weak/weird.

Southern, given that Mike Wilson did bring it up with the Americans, it would seem the government disagrees with you and feels it's a bit less than silly.

As for the LA statement, I'll let it speak for itself, If you want to look at the sky and say it's purple nothing I can say is going to disuade you.

Eric said...

Wow.. BCer.. that was amusing.

Read the Lung Association's statement. Better yet, I'll post some of what they say, starting at the beginning:


"The Canadian Lung Association welcomes the stronger powers to control pollution introduced in the federal government’s Clean Air Act."

"The Lung Association supports the proposed use of regulatory enforcement and caps on air emissions as the most effective means to reduce air pollution. The Association is encouraged by the government’s decision to place the new provisions within the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA)..."

"The Lung Association is pleased to see indoor air quality regulated under the Act..."

"The Lung Association is encouraged by the government’s commitment to consult with a wide range of stakeholders.."


"The Lung Association has serious concerns that the proposed approach under the Clean Air Act will not reduce emissions of greenhouse gases quickly enough.."

"However, the Association urges the government to shorten the process to allow the early introduction of regulations on air quality..."

"However, the Association is also urging the government to move more quickly on improving air quality..."

Essentially, the CLA agrees with pretty much everything in the bill just wants it to happen faster. Also remember that the Liberals mocked the Tories for some of the same reasons that the CLA is praising the Clean Air Act.

That's not arguing the sky is purple, that's arguing that its only partly sunny.

Oh and about the 'silly' comment, please read. I said "the entire 'call your mentor' bit was just silly", not that complaining is silly. You're using a straw man argument. Stop it.

Its not hypocritical for the Tories to complain to the USA because the Tories haven't used anti-Americanism as an election tool in the last election.