'It was incredible to watch'

I’m a bit hesitant to link again, for the umpteenth time, to Glen Pearson’s blog. But then I suppose it doesn’t do us any good to avoid celebrating candor from our politicians—rare as it is. (If any of our other 307 MPs are currently writing so freely online, please send any links I’ve missed.)

One way or another, last Thursday in Parliament will eventually be the stuff of undergraduate history texts. Here is how Mr. Pearson saw it.

To be sure, certain portions of the update had been leaked a day earlier, but the sheer scope of the Prime Minister’s statement suddenly laid bare everything that we had all feared might dwell beneath the veneer of the government’s civility. In that moment at least, we stared into a kind of abyss and didn’t like its depth.  What fascinated me were the faces of the Conservative MPs during the reading of the statement itself. They appeared on edge, worried, and more than a little apprehensive, as if they knew danger was ahead.

No sooner was the speech ended than the Prime Minister and his Finance Minister left the House, along with half of the Conservative caucus. The faces on those that remained told the story in vivid detail. Listening to the response from the three opposition parties, you could tell from their countenance some kind of line had been crossed.

In the Opposition Lobby, I saw things I had never witnessed in my two years here. Bloc members were “high-fiving” NDP caucus members, and some women from the Bloc were embracing their counterparts in the Liberal caucus. It was incredible to watch.

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