The Speaker of the House of Commons is giving the green light to more than 800 of the opposition’s proposed amendments to the government’s so-called omnibus bill.
But Speaker Andrew Scheer says he will restrict the number of votes on proposed changes to the budget implementation legislation, Bill C-38.
There are a lot of people who are upset with this bill, not so much because of everything that’s in it, but because of how it’s packaged. Sharlene Harrison-Hinds is taking part in a protest at MP Mark Strahl’s office this week. She says some of the bills in here will gut environmental protection, gut the fisheries act, and make it easier for the pipeline to go through. She says the Tories are being sneaky.
“There are a lot of people from different parties who think that this is shameful. Some of them have gone so far as to say this is the end of democracy in Canada. I’m serious…you can look online and see quotes from people who are very well respected, politicians and otherwise, because this is all very underhanded.”
She says omnibus bills are a tactic used by governments in US, and the bills are often so long that most politicians don’t actually read them all before voting on them.
UFV Political Science Professor Hamish Telford says he personally is opposed to the bill.
“I don’t think it is consistent with standard parliamentary practice in Canada, or indeed within the broader system of parliament we adopted from the UK. I think it would be more appropriate within a parliamentary system to deal with these issues sequentially. Deal with the budget as a budget matter. Then move onto other issues, like the environment, and maybe package those as an omnibus bill…..I think this is an abuse of the parliamentary process.”
If you would like to get involved in this local protest, you can head to Chilliwack-Fraser Canyon MP Mark Strahl’s office at 5:30 Wednesday night, where a group opposed to the bill will be meeting. Strahl will not be there, and it’s believed he is voting in support of the bill.