In the face of growing scandals, Stephen Harper has prorogued Parliament for the fourth time, adding another month to his summer break from answering questions about the Senate expense scandal, the role his office played in the cover-up and his government’s economic mismanagement.
“While many families continue to struggle, Stephen Harper is shutting down parliament, afraid to answer questions about the economy or his involvement in the Senate expense scandal,” said NDP leader Tom Mulcair. “Canadians deserve better. New Democrats are primed and ready this fall to take on the Conservatives and get results for people.”
Today’s prorogation also betrays the will of the House of Commons. In March 2010, the House approved Jack Layton’s motion demanding the Prime Minister seek parliamentary approval for any prorogation lasting longer than one week.
“Stephen Harper is setting new records for proroguing and avoiding accountability. He should stop hiding and recall parliament now to face questions from the people’s representatives,” said Mr. Mulcair.
Since becoming Prime Minister, Stephen Harper has shut down parliament for a total of 181 days – a new record for recent Prime Ministers. Jean Chretien prorogued parliament for 145 days, mostly to avoid Sponsorship scandal questions. Brian Mulroney’s prorogations lasted 68 days in total.
New Democrats will be holding a press conference on Monday to outline their plans while the House is prorogued.