The PM yesterday on one of the motivations for his government's support of the axing of the long gun registry:
“Canadians have been very clear. They want us to spend our time and our money focusing on the criminal misuse of firearms and not going after law-abiding duck hunters and farmers.” (emphasis added)Ah, so he claims that Canadians have been very clear and he is therefore listening to them. Well if that's the standard the PM has for his government's actions, then surely we can expect the government to pay attention to Canadians who have indeed been very clear on the preservation of the long form census. Those numbers continue to grow.
But let's get real, what Canadians are deemed to be clear about, after all, will vary from issue to issue with this PM, depending on his party's political views and necessities.
A few other points on this gun registry story as it developed yesterday...
It's worth reminding ourselves that it's really a sight to see the Prime Minister and his MPs seeking to undermine the police chiefs on the issue and seeking to sow division between the chiefs and the rank and file in order to get a political win. The Canadian Police Association wrote to MPs and Senators back in the spring pushing back against this notion of a supposed divide in the ranks. They're the representative body for Canadian police officers and that either means something or it doesn't. Surveys have shown that police do say the registry is useful to them.
It's not to say that the Conservatives can't disagree with the utility of a tool that police use and seek to change the law. They can do so but their tactics should bear scrutiny. This is theoretically a private member's bill, yet it's apparently going to be coming at quite a cost with this divisive strategy now being pursued.
One other thing about what Harper said yesterday...
“There are some police officers who disagree with the government’s position,” he said. “On the other hand, all of the elected police officers in the Parliament of Canada support the government’s position."