Opinion Column

Conservatives and the doomsday scenario

Bill Tieleman

By Bill Tieleman, News, Views, and Attitude – 24 hours

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau (L), NDP leader Thomas Mulcair (C) and Progressive Conservative leader Stephen Harper pose for a photo opportunity prior to the beginning of  the Globe and Mail Leaders Debate in Calgary, Alberta in this September 17, 2015, file photo. With Canada's three mainpolitical parties all getting around 30 percent support inpolls, the odds of a period of political instability after the October 19 election are rising. 
REUTERS

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau (L), NDP leader Thomas Mulcair (C) and Progressive Conservative leader Stephen Harper pose for a photo opportunity prior to the beginning of the Globe and Mail Leaders Debate in Calgary, Alberta in this September 17, 2015, file photo. With Canada's three mainpolitical parties all getting around 30 percent support inpolls, the odds of a period of political instability after the October 19 election are rising. REUTERS

“No one is so brave that he is not disturbed by something unexpected.” - Julius Caesar

Call it an unexpected doomsday scenario for New Democrats, Liberals and Greens, but the Conservatives have a clear path to stay in power after the election into 2016 – and then fight a second election – without Parliament ever sitting.

And with some polls putting the Conservatives in first place, or at least with the best chance of winning the most seats, the odds of them pulling a magic rabbit out of the electoral hat keep increasing.

Despite people like Green Party Leader Elizabeth May being in denial – she issued a recent flyer claiming “the Conservatives will not form the government after this election” – exactly the opposite is likely.

Unwelcome to many, but here’s how it could work.

The Conservatives win the most seats in the new 338-seat Parliament on Oct. 19 but not a majority, followed by the NDP, Liberals, Greens and Bloc Quebecois.

That means as the incumbent, Stephen Harper remains prime minister until defeated in a vote in Parliament.

So Harper doesn’t call a session until spring – and Canada’s Constitution only requires Parliament to meet once a year.

And both NDP Leader Tom Mulcair and Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau say the party with the most seats gets the first chance to form a government – Harper agrees.

Next, Harper announces he will resign as party leader but remain prime minister until a Conservative leadership contest occurs.

The new Conservative PM calls both Mulcair and Trudeau in early 2016 seeking their support to resume Parliament – and they refuse.

But no matter.

“It’s a brand new day,” the new Conservative leader shouts with joy, thanking Harper for his economic leadership but apologizing for “excesses” like the draconian security Bill C-51, muzzling scientists and climate change inaction.

Governor General David Johnston agrees to call a new election so the Conservatives can seek a mandate – and we have another election in May 2016!

Outlandish? Impossible? Maybe, but Canadians keen on ending Harper’s reign may be disturbed by the unexpected – as surprising as what happened to Julius Caesar on the steps of the Senate on the Ides of March.

Unless, that is, the NDP and Liberals stop the Conservatives from winning the most seats.

Bill Tieleman is a former NDP strategist. Read his blog at http://billtieleman.blogspot.com or Email: weststar@telus.net Twitter: @BillTieleman

 

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