Thursday, November 27, 2008

Does Stephen Harper Want Another Election?

The Harper Government's proposed cuts to funding for political parties are cynical and can be seen as nothing more than an attack on the other political parties. These subsidies were put in place to limit the influence of corporations and lobby groups. It means that, for those Canadians who take the time to vote, $1.75 per year goes to the party they voted for, win or lose.

In a time when we desperately need electoral reform in Canada this is the exact opposite. It means that if the party you vote for doesn't win your party and your candidate get nothing at all. I suppose it is not surprising that the party most tightly linked to large corporations and lobby groups should want to increase the influence that those groups have but it should not be seen as a 'cost cutting measure'. In the long run that increased influence will end up costing taxpayers far more than the little bit we save and ultimately it will weaken Canadian Democracy and limit the ability of minority parties to have their voices heard at all.

The timing of this, coming right after an election that only Stephen Harper wanted, cannot be ignored either. The Liberal are in the midst of a leadership race and the timing for an election is bad for everyone, but if it's a choice between an election and allowing the democratic funding of political parties to end then we must have another election. Under the circumstances it may be necessary for the Liberal Party to cut short their leadership race and go straight to a convention.

As you can probably guess a Facebook Group to this effect has been started.

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