A few points about this Friday motion though, in case Bob has it all wrong. It includes the home renovation tax credit provisions that took nine months to bring forth. Why? Apparently "...because Finance officials needed more time to draft the details of the program and ensure there aren't any loopholes." And what the heck. What's one more confidence measure thrown on the barbie from Prime Minister Instability? The nation has thoroughly enjoyed this latest one, right?
What's interesting about the motion though, and apparently the Bloc and NDP have made their peace with this, is a curious little amendment that is connected to the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. Seems to be Harper poking the Bloc and NDP in the eye while simultaneously and strangely (and successfully) courting those parties.
Here's CP reporting on the contingently framed free trade provision last night:
...the party was surprised late Monday to find that the motion also contains a possible poison pill: a reference to tax measures that will go into effect should Parliament approve separate legislation on a free trade agreement with Colombia.It's very difficult to accept that a motion that specifically raises the free trade deal has nothing to do with the free trade deal. They're tying the NDP and Bloc to it - if the deal passes - if they vote for this motion. So the Harper game was apparently to make it as hard as humanly possible for the NDP in particular, who have been the most vocal on the deal, to support this motion. Typical. And very unlike a Prime Minister supposedly looking to avoid an election. But if Fife is correct, the poke in the eye has been accepted.
The NDP is adamantly opposed to the trade pact due to Colombia's record of human rights abuses.
Supporting the ways and means motion would not prevent New Democrats from voting later against the trade pact. But the party must decide whether it wants to be seen to be facilitating the trade deal in any way.
NDP spokesman Brad Lavigne said the party is assessing whether inclusion of the Colombian trade deal tax changes in the motion are "substantial or inconsequential." Other New Democrats characterized the matter as largely "administrative" and not overly significant.
A spokesman for Finance Minister Jim Flaherty was quick to insist that "the ways and means (motion) is in no way related" to the Colombian trade deal. He suggested the NDP had made "an honest mistake."(emphasis added)
Unless that all changes today or tomorrow, of course. Life under Prime Minister Instability.