Prime Minister Harper’s Conservatives Make It Clear They Will Break Promises to Democratize Election Candidate Nomination Races
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
OTTAWA - Today, Democracy Watch criticized Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Conservatives' clear abandonment of their election promises to pass laws to“Ensure that party nomination and leadership races are conducted in a fair, transparent, and democratic manner” and to “Prevent party leaders from appointing candidates without the democratic consent of local electoral district associations.”
While the Conservatives introduced Bill C-54 last May (it didn’t pass and has not been re-introduced) addressing loans to federal parties, riding associations, and all types of candidates, the bill is very flawed because it only limits loans from individuals to the amount of their annual donation limit, while allowing banks (which are regulated by the federal government) and federal political parties to loan as much as they want, thereby giving bank and political party executives the power to pick and choose candidates they want to support with loans that will, of course, influence whether the candidate supports the bank’s and party’s policy proposals.
Bill C-54 is also very flawed because it does nothing to make secret donations to nomination race candidates or party leadership candidates illegal (changes made to the Canada Elections Act by the Federal Accountability Act finally made secret donations to election candidates illegal as of June 12, 2007).
In addition, the Conservatives have not introduced a bill to prevent party leaders from appointing candidates, and have resisted and rejected the results of riding nomination races. For example:
Democracy Watch will continue to push all the federal parties to democratize all federal election processes, as well as to close the many other loopholes in the federal government’s accountability system. (To see the full list of the Conservatives' 24 broken accountability and democratic reform promises, click here) and to see the full list of loopholes, go to the Clean Up the System webpage).
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FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:
To see a summary of the key measures in Bill C-2, the so-called Federal Accountability Act, click here
To see a summary of the 90 undemocratic loopholes in the federal government's accountability system that Bill C-2 does nothing to close, click here
To see the details about the ethics complaint Democracy Watch has filed about the Conservatives' breaking their election promises concerning Bill C-2, click here
To see an opinion piece about Bill C-2 by Democracy Watch Coordinator Duff Conacher which was published in two Canadian newspapers, click here
To see Bill C-2, the so-called“Federal Accountability Act”and related federal government documents go to: http://www.accountability.gc.ca
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