By Richard Forbes. Confusion erupted across the House of Commons as the opposition's standing ovation continued for several minutes. The stall tactic, a naked and dramatic attempt at upstaging Morneau's budget speech with concerns of their own, helped to direct public attention to the government's hopes to change how parliament works. For the past twenty … Continue reading Reforming the House of Commons will require more patience than Trudeau gave electoral reform
By Richard Forbes. Featured image via Sean Kilpatrick, CP. "For a decade, middle class struggles were simply swept under the rug," Finance minister Bill Morneau says to parliament, prompting jeers from the opposition. "But the good news is that Canadians—on their own accord—worked hard and persevered. We have always been resilient and innovative, able to adapt—and … Continue reading A source of endless confusion, the Liberals should drop their “middle class” rhetoric before it backfires
By Richard Forbes. Featured image via Christopher Pike, Toronto Star. Here at the Ribbon, we like big ideas and it will take a whole helluva lot of big ideas to fix the Senate. The much beleaguered Red Chamber - Canada's chamber of 'sober second thought' - has been in the crosshairs of constitutional reformers since … Continue reading Reforming the Senate, one step at a time
By Richard Forbes. Justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould tabled a bill last week in the House of Commons to cull the Criminal Code of so-called 'zombie laws' - laws that have been found unconstitutional and effectively nullified by courts in the past but remained on the books unenforced without repeal. One of these zombie laws that … Continue reading If Canada is reopening the abortion debate, let’s finish it once and for all
By Richard Forbes. Orangeville, Ontario - Rumours coming from the Dufferin-Caledon Conservative riding association suggest executives there are discussing a bid by Conservative front-runner Kevin O'Leary to replace Conservative MP David Tilson. Turning seventy six this Sunday, David Tilson is the oldest sitting Member of Parliament - representing the Dufferin area for thirteen years as … Continue reading Kevin O’Leary reportedly to run for MP in Dufferin-Caledon
By Richard Forbes. Featured Image via Frank Gunn. In a momentous mea culpa, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and other ministers spent last week addressing what they called 'the elephant in the room': 'gee, I know we've been avoiding the subject, guys,' they said with some contrition, 'but we really do care - honest!' That elephant … Continue reading Don’t count Kathleen Wynne out just yet
By Richard Forbes. Featured image via Justin Tang. This year's Manning Centre Conference has been as good an indication as any of just how far adrift the party really is. The conference's eponymous founder and keynote speaker, Preston Manning, the former leader of Canada's Reform Party, dismissed the possibility of a party divide at this … Continue reading Without changing course, the Conservatives will split
By Richard Forbes. Featured image via Hannah Yoon, CP. If nothing else it's become clear over the past few weeks that the only thing standing between the awesome power of the Oval Office and the deranged circus act of its new ringleader is the free press - among them, the New York Times and the … Continue reading Could Russia exploit Canada’s “shattered mirror”?
By Richard Forbes. Make no mistake, I was positively livid when Democratic Institutions minister Karina Gould announced the Liberals were backing away from their electoral reform pledge. While not a central plank of the Liberals' campaign platform, electoral reform had offered a tantalizing prospect of 'real change' - hopes which were dashed that morning by Gould's … Continue reading From one disappointed reformer to another: why you shouldn’t give up on Trudeau
By Richard Forbes. It was supposed to have been healthcare's "fix for a generation" or so the prime minister, then Paul Martin, had said. Nothing could have characterized the Martin government better than the loose jaw-jaw, full of indecision, contradiction and publicity, which bore his Health Accord in the fall of 2004 - the product … Continue reading Signing a health agreement with Ottawa: which province is next?