Wednesday October 21, 2020 | NATIONAL [Posted at 11 am Pacific | updated 1:33 pm with vote result]
by Mary P Brooke, editor | Island Social Trends
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said today in a press conference in Ottawa that his party will not give Prime Minister Justin Trudeau an “excuse” to send Canadians to the polls in the middle of a global pandemic.
This was a few hours ahead of a vote in the House of Commons, and indicating that Trudeau’s government will survive today’s confidence vote.
This means he and his 23 fellow NDP Members of Parliament will either vote alongside the Liberals against a Conservative motion to set up a committee that Trudeau said yesterday showed non-confidence in the government.
By declaring today’s vote a ‘confidence motion’, if the motion passes it would trigger an election.
Singh said the NDP feel that Canadians do not want to deal with an election right now in the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially as an election call now by Trudeau is seen by the NDP and Bloc Quebecois as a political ploy by Trudeau to call a snap election.
“If he wants an election, he should just call one,” said Singh yesterday, rather than putting the NDP in a spot to either support the Liberals (who have done the NDP’s bidding for month’s now), not to mention the stress on Canadians at this time.
If the 24 NDP MPs vote along with the Liberals it does have some political ripple effects in that opposing the Conservative motion to have a committee that would push hard on investigating the WE Charity scandal is something the NDP would likely normally support.
The federal Liberal government has been trying to govern as if they are a majority government, largely using the support of the NDP along the way in the past year.
Update on final vote – 1:33 pm Pacific Time October 21, 2020 – the government stands (there will be no election). Votes went 146 votes in favour (Conservatives & Bloc) and 180 against (Liberals, NDP, Greens and independent).