Roundup: Omnibus Budget Bill 2: The Revenge

Yesterday, the government tabled Omnibus Budget Bill 2: The Revenge, and it’s largely tax code changes, along with changes to the Navigable Waters Act (which some call the erosion of those protections), and the bit about MP pensions. Predictably, the opposition is complaining about the size of it – which is their right. But I would also suggest that rather than complain about it day in and day out, they beat the government at its own game and come up with technical critiques, breaking it up by topic among the caucus. It won’t happen, but it would be an interesting tactic that they never employed the last time around.

The tale of Peter Penashue and the federal election in Labrador gets more and more interesting. First the government said it was a “rookie mistake” – err, except the appointed the official agent based on his great business experience, and Penashue stood for office in several Innu elections previous, so he wasn’t a rookie. The Liberal whom he defeated is out-and-out calling Penashue a cheater. And then, we find out that two of the polling stations were closed on election day because an Elections Canada employee drove off with the ballot boxes – mere “hiccups” the agency says. But with the vote so close – 79 votes separating them – perhaps we may see this result overturned as well.

The final report of the National Round Table on Environment and the Economy says that the government’s ignoring the low-carbon marketplace will cost the economy $87 billion over 30 years. The government rejects this advice because it would mean putting a price on carbon, which they couldn’t possibly do.

A retired BC Crown prosecutor discusses the state of the justice system, and he’s not too keen on all of those mandatory minimum sentences.

Over in Ontario, there are suggestions that McGuinty planned the prorogation before he planned to resign. If that’s the case, it is part of the worrying trend to shut down legislatures when they become too heated. Up until this point, I’ve been fine with it as part of the resignation process because his resignation effectively dissolves the ministry, which could not then actually govern (nor could the legislature hold it to account). Meanwhile, it seems that Ontario Liberals are split over the prorogation decision. Here is a fantastic post that pretty much sums up the issue from the perspective of civic literacy – or the lack thereof on the part of most everyone who has commented, including the opposition leaders.

Your daily Liberal leadership gossip says that David McGuinty is still interested in a run at the prize, and Judy Sgro would be shocked if his older brother Dalton made the leap to federal politics.

Here is your recap of last night’s political shows. (I’m tinkering with the format of Politics on TV – any suggestions you may have for it are greatly appreciated).

And the day after the big announcement on new spending to fight cyber-crime, the RCMP charged a contract employee on the Hill – who had also done contract work for the RCMP – with hacking the Quebec provincial government’s computers. Oh, the irony.