The end

’We need to show some respect for the Canadian public’
Musician Sarah Harmer and independant MP Bruce Hyer look on as Green Party leader Elizabeth May speaks during a news conference Tuesday Nov.27, 2012 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

The last two rounds of Question Period this morning, in which Elizabeth May suggests that denigrating one’s rivals in response to questions about one’s own failings is a philosophically flawed and unworthy approach and Pierre Poilievre responds by attacking Justin Trudeau.

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, in all the din and disrespect of the last few sessions of question period, actually going back weeks, Canadians would never see what I see, which is that the vast majority of members of Parliament in this place are decent and hard-working people who would never, except when they are handed a talking point, turn and around and decide that when they are asked a question to try to cast blame and throw scandals at everybody else. This tactic of throwing mud around is going to bring all parliamentarians and democracy itself into disrespect and disrepute, essentially saying “everybody does it”. I really would beg the government ministers now to answer this question. Will the Prime Minister please just take responsibility and call an inquiry?

Jason Kenney: Mr. Speaker, currently there are independent agencies which are reviewing this matter, as they should do, and of course the government will co-operate fully with such reviews.

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the minister’s response, and it is true that the RCMP are investigating the Prime Minister’s office, which is, I think, a first in the history of this country. My question goes to the partisanship, which is endemic, of course, to politics, but can we not rise above it in question period and in our talking points to media, to stop trying to make minor molehill incidents into major mountains? We need to show some respect for the Canadian public and not continue to let this place degenerate.

Pierre Poilievre: Mr. Speaker, today we learned that Leanne, from the Grace Foundation, lost her job. She lost her job because the Liberal leader charged $20,000 in speaking fees for a fundraising event that was a total bomb. It lost money, and now donations that were intended to help the elderly who are most in need, went into the pocket of the Liberal leader. This organization is pleading with the Liberal leader, and has been doing so for two months, for him to pay that money back. I hope the Green Party will join with us in urging the Liberal leader to do the right thing by our seniors and our elderly and pay the money back.