Steinbach, MB – Ted Falk, Member of Parliament for Provencher, today shared concerns with the decision to suspend full parliamentary sittings until September.
“The Liberal government has shut down Parliament until September, with the help of the NDP,” said Falk.
Yesterday, the Liberal government proposed a motion to suspend full parliamentary sittings until September 21. With the support of the NDP, the Liberal motion passed.
“Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Justin Trudeau has dodged parliamentary accountability, making announcement after announcement about government programs and spending far from the floor of the House of Commons,” Falk said. “Canadians expect their elected representatives to ask the tough questions, provide oversight, and keep one another accountable. The best forum for this is Parliament.”
While the House of Commons special committee on COVID-19 will continue to provide limited opportunities to question government actions, it does not provide the full scope of powers MPs normally enjoy. Under the current arrangement, MPs cannot introduce or debate private member’s bills or post order paper questions – written questions the government is obligated to respond to within 45 days. Opposition Days – days on the parliamentary calendar where opposition parties can set the agenda – are also postponed until September.
“These are tools MPs are always using to get results for their constituents,” Falk explained. “To be sure, there are other avenues Conservatives can and will use to keep the Liberal government accountable, but it’s profoundly disappointing to see these two parties use their collective majority to deny Canadians full parliamentary representation.”