Our View: Senate purge not a bad idea

 

Federal Liberal leader Justin Trudeau launched an attack Wednesday on the only target in the Senate he could hit – his own party.

Trudeau has disbanded the Liberal caucus within the Red Chamber. There are no more Liberal senators, he said. No longer will the Liberal party have a place in the unelected portion of Canada’s government.

Trudeau has done this, he says, as a sort of practical step towards Senate reform. He’s challenging PM Stephen Harper to do the same, freeing the Conservative senators from their party bonds.

Symbolically, it’s a big move. But practically, it’s hard to say whether it will make any difference in the short term. It’s hard to imagine all those now-independent ex-Liberal senators will suddenly feel emboldened to strike out on their own – they already had the ultimate in job security.

It also comes after the Liberals had already lost two senators, Mac Harb to the ongoing expenses scandals that has also engulfed three Tory senators, and Colin Kenny, who left the Liberal caucus after being accused of sexual harassment.

Cutting loose some senators – not exactly the most respected politicians in Canada – may be a good move politically for Trudeau. He’s currently leading a third party in the House of Commons, and even with rising polls, he’s facing a tough Tory machine that has withstood a lot of attacks in recent years, and an NDP that showed its muscle in the last federal election. 

Frankly, the best thing about Trudeau’s decision is that it keeps the existence of the Senate on the political agenda. The Senate is undemocratic, a patronage plum, and generally a waste of space. The NDP says it should be abolished. The Liberals say it should be reformed. 

Trudeau has thrown down the gauntlet to the Conservatives. We’ll see what their answer is in the weeks to come. 

– M.C.

Just Posted

Giants defenceman Bowen Byram named WHL On the Run Player of the Week

Registered three goals and three assists in a pair of victories for Langley-based team

British wheels have a certain appeal

Langley Area Mostly British Motoring Club celebrates English auto design

LETTER: Langley resident says a cancer plague is building

A Langley City man believes a poor diet and unhealed emotions are part of his cancer journey.

‘Diamond’ for Aldergrove rock fans

Fraser Valley Rock and Gem Club marks 60 years in Aldergrove

UPDATE: Langley’s Fairy Godmother Foundation received ‘unbelievable’ amount of prom wear

Lizette Etsebeth’s Fairy Godmother Foundation collected approximately 450 dresses.

UK lawmakers reject Brexit deal in 432-202 vote

House of Commons votes against the deal struck between Britain’s government and the EU

Letters on way to all homeowners in B.C. speculation tax communities

Property owners have to register to avoid vacant-home tax

New orca calf in Salish Sea ‘healthy and active’

Birth cause for celebration but things still dire genetically, expert says

Good Samaritan rescues cat found in heaps of garbage at B.C. landfill

The cat was abandoned and left to die at the Foothills Boulevard Regional Landfill, the BC SPCA says

Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna home to Canada’s most expensive rentals: report

According to PadMapper, units in larger B.C. cities cost $1,300 to more than $3,000

Former MP Svend Robinson wants to return to politics

Robinson is expected to be acclaimed as the NDP candidate in the riding of Burnaby North-Seymour

B.C. home sales drop 25% in 2018

The B.C. Real Estate Association points to the federal government’s mortage stress test

Canada asks China for clemency for B.C. man sentenced to death, Freeland says

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was sentenced to 15 years, but after new trial, was sentenced to die

Body found near Lions Bay believed to be missing woman

Lorraine Prebushewski, in her 60s, had been reported missing Sunday afternoon

Most Read