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Thursday
May182017

Congratulations to Senator Greene

At first when I read this story, I thought the summer silly season had already arrived. For those not familiar with it, the silly season usually begins when the House breaks and reporters are having a hard time finding something to write about. But no, it was true; the Conservative Senate leadership had kicked a Conservative senator out of their caucus because he dared to have dinner with the Prime Minister!

Yes! You get to walk the plank now for such treasonous behavior!

Senate politics has always been more collegial and less partisan than in the House. That is a bonus not a negative. I know that having worked on both the Senate and House sides.

For those that haven’t followed the story, Senator Greene was invited along with every other senator who had introduced a government bill to have dinner with the Prime Minister. Senate leadership ordered him not to go. When Green insisted that it was his right to attend, he was kicked out of the caucus.

I am on Greene’s side on this one. This was not about breaking ranks on a key vote- it was about dinner!

I believe that senators and MPs as part of their duties have a right to meet with anyone from the other parties at any time that they want too. That includes dinner with the Prime Minister.

For one thing you always learn some intelligence that might be useful to your own side. You also build bridges and relationships with members of the other side that can come in handy down the road when your party needs help getting a motion through or when you want to open dialogue on issues that have the parties deadlocked.

If I was in Greene’s situation, I would have done the same thing. You attend out of respect for the office of the Prime Minister. It shouldn’t matter who the Prime Minister is; show respect for the office… you don’t have to like the man in it.

So now we have lost a Conservative who is free to vote as he sees fit- you have to shake your head over such stupidity.

This action of the Conservative Senate leadership is more of the same small mindedness that we saw towards the end of the Harper government. You have to roll your eyes that it is still going on- have they learnt nothing?

 

 

Reader Comments (2)

I would agree with you IF it were merely a question of a dinner invitation. But according to Wiki the issue was Senator Greene's support for the Trudeau government's intended reform of the Senate. It all sounds so "collegial" -- taking partisanship out of the Senate -- but it sounds like other "less partisanship" moves of the Trudeau government, like appointing a Liberal to be Language Commissioner and the PM recusing himself from appointing the Ethics Commissioner because he's being investigated, so the Liberal House Leader is going to do it. THAT will take the partisanship out of it, won't it?

May 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterGabby in QC

Something else … because Senator Greene is bucking the Conservative position, he’s labelled or even lauded as an “independent”. No strident allusions to being one of the so-called hacks and bagmen appointed by former PM Harper. I had to google him to find out who had appointed him ‘cause CBC never mentioned it in the news reports I saw. But let any Conservative senator stray and the immediate connection to Stephen Harper will be made quite clear.

May 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterGabby in QC

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