In a media scrum yesterday MP Carolyn Bennett aptly described how Conservatives view our parliamentary democracy, that Parliament is nothing more than one big suggestion box. Her comments also touch on an important point the media and commentators ignored, that though the Liberals lost a motion for an international initiative to include family planning, if it had passed, this Conservative government would have ignored it as it has done with so many other parliamentary votes.
On March 24th, venting frustration over her own party's defeated motion on international maternal health, Carolyn Bennett suggested that even with the motions successful passage it would have been likely ignored. The MP referring to Parliament said that for "the real issues, the government treats this place like a big suggestion box you hang Christmas lights on."
Carolyn Bennett went on in an almost sombre tone, eulogizing the previously strong institution that was the Canadian Parliament:
"I mean we can vote Kyoto, Kids, Kelowna, Soldiers, it doesn't matter. This Prime Minister refuses to answer to Parliament. It puts this whole process in a very uncomfortable [place] for Parliamentarians, to live like this, where no one cares about what Parliament says."