Weekly Round-Up: September 13

September 13th, 2013 by Dan Allan

Each Friday, CIVIX provides a digest of the major events in Canadian politics. For ongoing updates, follow us on Twitter at @CIVIX_Canada.

The Nova Scotia election is underway!

The writ was dropped last Saturday, and Nova Scotians will cast their ballots on Tuesday, October 8! The campaign is in full-swing, and the leaders met for their first televised debate on Tuesday.

We’re organizing our first-ever Nova Scotia provincial Student Vote program, and more than 150 schools have already signed up. Our “Ground Team” in Halifax spent the week preparing resource packages to be shipped across the province. Interested teachers can still register!

Prorogation and another independent MP

It’s anticipated that the House of Commons will be prorogued today by Governor General David Johnston, at the request of Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Parliament is expected to return after Thanksgiving, on October 16, with a Speech from the Throne. A new poll shows a virtual tie between the Conservatives, NDP and Liberals, so the new parliamentary session could get interesting.

The House will have four vacant seats as the result of resignations and retirements over the summer, and there will be one more independent MP. Ahuntsic MP Maria Mourani was removed from the Bloc Québécois caucus this week after vocally opposing the controversial values charter in Quebec, her home province. Mourani joins Brent Rathgeber (formerly of the Conservatives) and Bruce Hyer (formerly of the NDP) as the only independents in the House. The Bloc caucus is now made up of only 4 members.

News from the BC Legislature

The British Columbia legislature isn’t prorogued, but MLAs still aren’t going back to work. Premier Christy Clark announced that the fall session would be skipped so more work could get done, and so MLAs could prepare for the spring session. The BC legislature has only sat for 36 days so far in 2013, the third lowest total in Canada.

In other news, BC NDP leader Adrian Dix is expected to announce whether he will stay on as leader next week. Dix lost the provincial election this spring despite a sizeable lead in the polls. If it’s any consolation, he won a majority government in the 2013 BC Student Vote.

In Memoriam

Tuxedo Stan, former Halifax mayoral candidate and beloved cat, passed away last week at the age of three.  His passion for politics will be carried on by his brother, Earl Grey. We’ll never forget you, Stan.

TS wheel barrow 2013-07-09 at 11-09-09.jpg

Don’t forget: Canada’s Democracy Week begins on Monday!

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