Part of this is surely a byproduct of the real latitude the Liberals enjoy. The overwhelming odds, no matter the decision there will be no election, but there are no guarantees. If I can be blunt, this can all be described quite succinctly- the Liberals are saying "fuck it". We're the opposition, we don't have any faith in this government, almost everywhere you turn, there's a stench. If we go to an election, we go to an election, not necessarily the want that others are trying to paint but fear of possibility no longer an overarching concern. Ignatieff wasn't playing safe today, and clearly people are feeling frisky:
Question: Will you be moving a motion of non-confidence before the summer break and will you also be supporting the Main Estimates, voting for the Main Estimates (off microphone)?
Michael Ignatieff: I don’t want an election. Canadians don’t want an election. But here’s where I am. I’m trying to make Parliament work with a government that every day is displaying more flagrant examples of incompetence. We’ve got a major medical crisis with the isotopes. They’ve got no plan. We’ve got, Toronto Dominion Bank just announced that the deficit over five years will be, wait for this, $168 billion. That’s the biggest number anybody has ever heard of. The public finances of this country are not under control. Right? Third, we’ve got an unemployment crisis with unemployment surging across the country. We’ve got Premier Campbell, we’ve got Brad Wall, we’ve got Premier McGuinty saying let’s do something about a national standard for EI. I’m not fancy about how we do it, but let’s do it. Right? We’ve got stimulus that needs to get out the door and only 6% of the stimulus has actually reached the country in the middle of the construction season.
So look, I want to make Parliament work. Canadians don’t want an election. I don’t want an election, but we have a problem, a serious problem about this government’s confidence, and I’m getting to the answer, next week, next week they have their second report card. Right? And as I said at the beginning of this, we’re holding these guys on probation. We’ll look at the data when we get it and we will make a serene and clear decision probably in the middle of next week. Thank you.
Outcome notwithstanding, for someone who's been embarrassed time and time again in the past as we scurried in the shadows, I'm enjoying the spine.