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April 26th, 2010:

Harper: maternal health does not include abortions under any circumstance…

Well, at least they have come clean on their 1950’s styled position!

Go team!

International Co-operation Minister Bev Oda said the government would consider funding family planning measures such as contraception, but not abortion under any circumstances.

“We’re saying that we’re using the definition in our discussions of family planning, which does not include abortion,” Oda told reporters on Monday in Halifax, where she was meeting with her G8 counterparts.

“We’re not debating abortion; we’re clarifying family planning.”

Thanks Bev for ignoring the reams of evidence that prove the connection between all possible choices regarding family planning and maternal health.

Liberal MP Bob Rae said the government has taken an ideological stand on the issue.

“They just reopened the abortion debate,” Rae told reporters outside the House of Commons. “We are saying to the countries that are the poorest: ‘We won’t apply the law that we have in Canada’.”

NDP MP Paul Dewar said the government has caused confusion with its lack of clarity ahead of the G8 meeting and that its position will cause problems with other G8 members at this summer’s summit in Ontario’s Muskoka region.

“It’s just unusual to see the ignorance of a government that claims to be a member of the G8,” Dewar said.


Why the secrecy?

The G&M is reporting that, despite the Auditor-General requests, MPs and Senators are refusing to submit their expenses for scrutiny.

I don’t get this. Why doesn’t Sheila Fraser push the issue?

Ten months ago, Auditor General Sheila Fraser formally asked two committees for permission to audit Parliament’s expenses, including the expenses of MPs and senators. She still hasn’t received a reply. Silence equals no.

Similar audits in Great Britain and Nova Scotia resulted in major scandals after revelations of major abuse.

In Ottawa, MPs and senators are determined to prevent anything like that from happening.


So, if the CRA decides to audit me (again), I can just ignore them?



But I somehow think that it wouldn’t turn out good for me.

Yeah, I do realise that all of the parties are reluctant to release this information and this is abhorrent to say the least. BUT the Harperites have trumpeted transparency-this and accountability-that since they rode their horses into Ottawa. So where are they now? I mean, what a great way to prove to nay-says like me that they really are going to carry through with all of that talk!

However, we have been down this road before, haven’t we?

Remember the Harperites when they tried to destroy the credibility of:

Now which direction do you thinkĀ  Sheila Fraser’s departmental budget is going to dive toward?


But Fraser has already been warned by the PMO to play nicely. New directives from the PMO prohibit Sheila Fraser from to speaking directly to the public without vetting her comments through the PMO first. All communications must be approved by political staffers. Here in town, they are called MEPs (Message Event Proposals).

You can read about them here in The Hill Times.

In the meantime, will someone on the Hill stand up and say something about this cloak of secrecy?