Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday March 29, 2006
PM given ultimatum
Opposition party leaders warned recently that they are willing to bring down Stephen Harper’s minority government if it does not change its course — particularly on the Tory promise to provide a child-care subsidy to parents — in the next two weeks.
In separate meetings with the Prime Minister, interim Liberal leader Bill Graham and the Bloc Quebecois’ Gilles Duceppe reminded the Conservative leader his party is outnumbered in the House of Commons and urged him to compromise on the government agenda as he drafts his Throne Speech.
The speech, which will be delivered by Governor-General Michaelle Jean on April 4, sets out the agenda for the coming parliamentary session and will be passed or defeated in a confidence vote that could spark another election.
Mr. Graham insisted the Liberals are willing to face the consequences of a confidence vote even though they won’t have a new leader until December and are still struggling with the fallout of the party’s defeat in January.
He laid out his party’s well-known concerns about the Tory agenda, including the fate of a $5-billion deal — signed by the Liberals last year — to improve living conditions for aboriginals, opposition to a cut to the Goods and Services Tax and Mr. Harper’s promise to pull out of child-care agreements that were also signed by the previous Liberal government (Source: National Post)