Poilievre said Tories were "a little bit surprised" that Ignatieff chose to kick off the negotiations by going "on the attack."
But Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre, a member of the bipartisan working group struck last month to negotiate an agreement with the Liberals on EI reforms, says the Harper government will "never" accept Ignatieff's proposal.
"The bottom line is we're not going to be supporting the notion that someone could collect EI for almost a year after working only 360 hours or nine weeks," Poilievre said in an interview Friday.
"All the costing shows that a nine-week work year would cost billions and the only way to fund it is through higher taxes, so we can't support that proposal."
Pierre's predictable bluster is just that, because the Conservatives know darn well that the Liberals won't insist on the 360 hour pre-requisite. Ignatieff has already intimated that the Liberals will move, which comes on the heels of this plain as day declaration from Fairbrother earlier this week:
While Ignatieff has said he's open to other suggestions, Fairbrother said the 360-hour standard remains "clearly our starting point" in the negotiations.
A starting point in negotiations, could it be any easier to comprehend? Last time I checked, and Pierre knows this well, a starting point does not a final resolution make, in fact it suggests COMPROMISE. For the poodle to get his curls in a lather, when he knows it's a disingenious argument, says that the government is more interested in optics than seriousness. What Pierre is doing, is making this 360 hour requirement an issue, so that when the final agreement doesn't include this number, the Conservatives can declare some kind of victory. All smoke, no fire.