As we speak lawyers for Elections Canada and Democracy Watch are arguing in Federal Court whether the last election was illegal. I support Democracy watch, in general, and can't wait for Harper to be retired to a think tank somewhere. Yet, I have doubts and I think the lawsuit is misdirected effort.
Its true that Stephen Harper broke his own law, and its true that this shows his lack of character and professionalism. However the law was a gimmick. It was a brain fart from the original Reform platform. None of the Reformers had much regard for the Constitution Act of 1982 and it continues to show.
A sitting Prime Minister making a law about election dates in a minority government is bizarre beyond belief, and I doubt the Supreme Court would be able to uphold such a law if it was ever challenged. It was a gimmick and nothing more, best remedied by the voters not the courts.
Harper knew ahead of time that ignoring such a bullshit law would be perfectly legal.
Democracy watch should focus on more important issues for now, given our growing democracy deficit. And yes, for the record, I believe we should have fixed election dates as part of overall electoral reform. I can only get behind that if its based on broad consultation. Stephen Harper isn't the one to do that, he can barely collaborate within his own tribe. Also, he doesn't understand what rule of law means.
Update September 8, 2009 14:15. Fix minor typos.
Update September 8, 2009 21:00 Links to other bloggers on same topic:
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