Shenanigans in the House
May 19, 2016
OTTAWA – Yesterday in the House, a very unfortunate situation took place when a member of the New Democratic Party (NDP) was unable to exercise her right to vote and a Conservative member was aggressively escorted by the Prime Minister toward his seat.
There will be many opinions and discussions as to what transpired. As I was there and observed what took place, I want to ensure my constituents have a true understanding of what occurred.
NDP and Conservative members were standing in the centre area of the chamber when both party Whips entered the House. Traditionally, members are to be seated when the Whips enter. The reason why they were not in their place was to demonstrate their objection to Government Motion 6, an unconstitutional move by the Liberal government to curtail the privileges of Members of Parliament. Opposition members were very concerned with the Liberal government’s attempt to gain more power over Parliament and stood standing as an act of solidarity and unified objection.
I clearly observed the Prime Minister quickly getting out of his chair, appearing very angry and rushing toward the Conservative Caucus Whip, Gordon Brown. During this advance, the Prime Minister accidentally pushed aside an NDP member. He then took the arm of MP Brown and aggressively guided him toward his chair in the House. Members of the opposition objected, at which point the Prime Minister returned to his seat. He remained there for a very brief moment. He then rose and crossed over to the NDP side of the floor and a verbal confrontation ensued with the NDP leader and others. Members of Parliament from all sides of the House started to leave their seats, at which point the Prime Minister then returned to his.
Today, the Liberal government removed Motion 6 from the Order Paper and the actions of the Prime Minister were referred to the Procedure and House Affairs Committee.
At times, tempers do flare, but as your Member of Parliament, I was appalled by the inappropriate actions that took place. I hope all members have learned that we are all accountable for our actions. We should and must act appropriately at all times.