February 25, 2024

La Ronge Northerner

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How can Parliament free itself from the eclipse of China’s interference?  |  Canada-China relations

How can Parliament free itself from the eclipse of China’s interference? | Canada-China relations

And yet, every day for months, it has been the focus of Question Time debate and a favorite subject of opposition attacks.

Public confidence in the electoral process is essential to the health of democracy. However, as the interference debate stalls, it seems urgent to end the impasse so we can talk about something else.

Recently, some have openly expressed their frustration on the subject.

We must return to state affairsYves-François Blanchet, leader of the Bloc Québécois, on Tuesday stressed the importance of launching an independent investigation quickly. We need to go back to health, the environment, the financing of oil, the causes of forest fires. We need to get back to the issues that affect Quebecers and Canadians every day, because that’s all we’re talking about right now.he lamented.

The leader of the Bloc Québécois, Yves-François Blanchet, was accompanied by his parliamentary leader, Alain Therrien, and his ethics critic, René Villemure.

Photo: The Canadian Press/Justin Tang

On Wednesday, Government House leader Mark Holland also appeared keen to turn the page. We need to get to a point where we focus on other issues that are very important to Canadians: the cost of living, climate change and other issues.He advanced.

It is hard not to think about the opportunity cost resulting from all the attention generated by the issue of foreign intervention. Indeed, legions of other subjects worthy of parliamentarians’ attention: excessive artificial intelligence, homelessness, climate change, the opioid crisis …

It is disingenuous to pretend that all parliamentary activity is focused on intervention and that nothing is done in the Commons on other important issues. Bills are regularly introduced and debated in the House, and committees study these complex issues.

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Nevertheless, the amount of energy expended by different parties in confronting each other in terms of interference gives them little room.

Exit the cul-de-sac

For weeks, parties in the Commons stuck to their guns. Chairman of NDPJagmeet Singh is calling for a public inquiry and for David Johnston to quit, but has not shown up threatening to tear up his coalition with the Liberals and defeat a minority Liberal government.

Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre and Bloc leader Yves-François Blanchet refuse to read classified documents that would give them a clearer picture of the situation.

And liberal troops heed the opposition’s demands by ruling as a majority.

As Question Time turned into a rat race on Wednesday, Speaker Anthony Rota suddenly threatened to end it.

David Johnston at a press conference in front of Canadian flags.

David Johnston, Special Rapporteur on foreign interference in Canadian elections

Photo: The Canadian Press/Sean Kilpatrick

By adopting a partisan position, the various parties in the Commons brought the interference file to an impasse. David Johnston — appointed by Justin Trudeau to rise above precisely this partisanship — holds one of the keys to breaking this deadlock. And ironically, it is only by bowing out that parties can extricate themselves from the political quagmire in which they find themselves.

Most of the elected officials who want a special rapporteur on foreign interference to pass the torch are now in the House of Commons. Fewer than 174 of the 324 MPs voted Wednesday in favor of the NDP motion. David Johnston is stepping down as Special Rapporteur and the Liberal government A public inquiry commission should be set up as a matter of urgency.

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Many are now wondering how David Johnston can stay in office when he is disapproved by the majority of elected officials.

Justin Trudeau has sent no signal that he is pushing him out the door.

The former Governor General himself does not seem to want to quit. Instead, he issued a statement indicating that he considered it his own It is a duty to continue this work till the end [son] Order. Had he bowed out, he would have allowed the government to tackle the issue on a fresh basis. Justin Trudeau would have had the opportunity to consult with all opposition parties and find a successor that would please everyone.

However, without an independent public inquiry, it is difficult to imagine that the opposition would have been fully satisfied.

The need to quickly restore voter confidence in the electoral process is pressing. This should be done before the next election to preserve the health of democracy. The clock is ticking and in a minority context, it is impossible to predict with certainty when this election will take place.