It’s another week on Open Sources Guelph, and there’s a lot of Canadian political news to get to. First, a couple of exclusives! We’ll have a first hand account of the the latest Conservative leadership debate this past weekend, plus an interview with one of the people running for the NDP leadership race (albeit the topic is a very specific issue). In the back half of the show, we’ll talk about changing the rules of the game in the House of Commons and why everybody’s so mad about all the money other people are making.
This Thursday, April 6, at 5 pm, Scotty Hertz and Adam A. Donaldson will discuss:
1) The Debate Escape. The 14 candidates for the Conservative Party leadership gathered Sunday to debate at the Eglinton Theatre. Did we say 14? Because only 13 showed up. Yes, Kevin O’Leary had to “spend time with his wife” (and talking about American healthcare on MSNBC apparently), so it was a baker’s dozen on stage in Toronto, and the round lead by former Finance Minister Joe Oliver showed all shades of blue as social conservatives took on fiscal conservatives who took on Red Tories who took on centrist pragmatics. And unlike previous leadership debates, a member of the Open Sources team was there to observe and report.
2) Nathan For You. When he’s not being the MP for Skeena-Bulkley Valley, or running for the leadership of the New Democrats, Nathan Cullen is going across the country to promote electoral reform. So naturally one of his stops was Guelph, the birthplace of fighting for electoral reform in Canada (it seems). ER is the issue that won’t go away for Justin Trudeau, and Cullen is going to keep pushing it for the next two months as the report prepared by a special parliamentary committee comes up for a vote at the end of May. Cullen is trying to rally support from the voters themselves, so we asked Cullen about that and the seemingly undying demand for reform in an exclusive interview during his Guelph stop.
3) House Rules. Meanwhile there’s another kind of reform being discussed on Parliament Hill that hasn’t received a lot of attention, and it concerns what government does in the House once they’ve been elected. Amongst the recommended changes are the elimination of the Friday session, electronic voting in the House, and the power for the Speaker to split omnibus bills. Some of that is not particularly earth-shattering, but then there’s the other stuff like cutting down time for debate, longer wait times for answers to the opposition’s written questions, and limiting filibusters in committee. So are the Liberals grabbin’ for more power, or can they make a case that this will improve our democracy?
4) Nickels and Dimes. Two big compensation stories made the news this week, on the one hand Bombardier executives stirred up anger as they cut jobs, beg for federal bailouts, miss important deadlines, and yet cut huge multimillion dollar bonuses for themselves. Meanwhile, the Government of Ontario released the numbers from the annual “Sunshine List” highlighting all the provincial employees that make $100,000 or more. People seem to get pretty riled up about public administrators making six figures, but they get downright angry about businessmen giving themselves millions of dollars of corporate welfare. We’ll talk about why money matters.
Open Sources is live on CFRU 93.3 fm and cfru.ca at 5 pm on Thursday.