Ignatieff’s reckless Coalition: He’ll do it again... I hope

Yay for a coalition.

Liberals keep on denying  any possibilities of a coalition.

By Simon Massey

It’s election season and the anti-Ignatieff attack ads are in full force.

Commercial breaks bombard us with messages about how Ignatieff called America “his country” or how “he didn’t come back for you.” I can’t help but be swayed by some of these ads. Maybe they’re just restating questions I have about his intentions or his policies. It troubles me the leader of the Liberal party supported the Iraq war, views pre-emptive war to be a necessary evil Western democracies may have to engage in, and that he sees Canada’s role in peacekeeping as outdated.

But there is one ad that doesn’t have the effect the Conservatives desired and that is the coalition ad. “Ignatieff and his reckless coalition, he did it before, he’ll do it again,” and I really have to hope he will. I have to hope that despite countless press releases to the contrary and public statements the party which wins the most seats will form government when the votes are tallied. If Iggy could beat the conservatives and form government by joining a coalition, he should do it, because at this point, a coalition is the only government I’d want to see.

Another Conservative minority would see more of the same with Harper putting out aggressive legislation and budgets in order to bully the opposition into forcing another election. A Liberal minority, though unlikely according to recent polls, would be doubtful to last two years before we return to the voting booth. A Conservative majority would see legislation passed that would erode Canadian democracy. Harper has stated that if his party forms a majority government, he will cut out per-vote subsidies given to political parties, effectively kneecapping the funds given to the opposition parties. Harper’s defence for this measure was parties should have to rely on the support of individual citizens and not the public purse. But what this boils down to is parties whose policies favour the wealthy will have more money, such as the Conservatives, whereas parties like the NDP, whose policies favour those with lower income, would have difficulty raising money. This is a blatant attempt from the Conservatives to slant further elections in their favour and shows a disregard for Canadian democratic values. The only satisfactory end to this cycle of frequent elections is with a coalition government.

A coalition forming a majority would better represent the interests of more Canadians than a minority government and give us a stable government so we wouldn’t have to run to the polls again anytime soon. The collaborative nature of a coalition would also dissuade my hesitations about having Ignatieff running the show – he wouldn’t be able to run wild with any idealist policies he may come up with. While I have hesitations about Ignatieff, I’d still prefer him to Harper. Though I wonder if Ignatieff is sufficiently in touch with other Canadians to appreciate modern Canadian values, I know Harper understands them, and he’s tearing them down at the foundations.