Jay Hill

Then Leader of the Government in the House of Commons Jay Hill speaks on June 15, 2010 (Sean Kilpatrick/CP)

The Maverick Party wants in—sort of

Jen Gerson: The new western conservative party’s plan is re-create the Bloc Québécois, and carve out a quasi-independent subnational entity just like Quebec

The quantifiable rise of partisanship

Fifteen minutes a day to say what you want

Jay Hill’s arguments against the Reform Act

The former whip has some concerns


No time for debate

While the Liberals complain that the budget implementation act received just four days of House debate at second reading—15 seconds per page, the Liberals figure—two former government House leaders defend the practice of “time allocation.”


Au revoir, Chuck Strahl and John Cummins

The Transport Minister and the Conservative backbencher will also refrain from seeking reelection. Both were members of the Reform party’s class of 1993.

MPs get bookish – Politics & the Pen

At this year’s Politics & the Pen gala, Anna Porter took home the $25 000 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for political writing for her book The Ghosts of Europe: Journeys Through Central Europe’s Troubled Past and Uncertain Future. Below, Porter with House Leader John Baird.

Jim Prentice’s goodbye bash

Former cabinet minister Jim Prentice held a goodbye party before the House rose. Prentice (left) with Justice Minister Rob Nicholson.


A plea for decency

I wasn’t in the House this afternoon on account of other commitments, but I’m told that shortly after Question Period, Speaker Peter Milliken rose to rule on a point of order previously raised by Liberal Derek Lee. Mr. Lee complained last month that a statement by Conservative MP Phil McColeman should have been ruled out of order as a personal attack on Liberal Mark Holland. That the time allotted for statements by members—15 minutes each day normally reserved for noting charitable causes, the accomplishments of constituents and such—was being used to launch partisan attacks was identified as a problem last March by Speaker Milliken, a problem he attempted to addresses with limited success.


In memoriam

The concept of ministerial accountability was born on the morning of May 25, 2010, invoked so as to protect ministerial staff from having to testify before parliamentary committees. It lived a short, but fitful life.



With Jay Hill announcing his departure and the Bloc’s Jean-Yves Roy expected to soon follow, as many as five ridings may now be officially put in play before year’s end. Pundits Guide circles December 13 on the calendar.


What of ministerial accountability?

In light of revelations that an aide to Christian Paradis meddled in access to information requests, that aide’s subsequent resignation, and Minister Paradis’ refusal (at least so far) to do likewise, it is likely worth turning again to Jay Hill’s announcement in the House last May of the government’s new doctrine of ministerial accountability.

The new line-up

John Baird takes over as house leader for the departing Jay Hill