Feb 072006
 

Update.

Emerson Owes Vancouver Kingsway Riding Association $96,755.

Jason Cherniak has this update. He got a pdf copy of a letter from the Vancouver Kingsway Federal Liberal Riding Association to David Emerson. Here’ what some of it said.

Approximately three hundred volunteers gave their time generously to the Liberal campaign. They gave up time with family, children and friends, took time off work, and took time away from their small businesses because they believed in the ideals of the Liberal Party and wanted you to represent Vancouver Kingsway as our Liberal MP.

Your actions have made their gifts of time meaningless.

They ask that he:

1. Do the honorable thing and resign and have a reelection.

Let the voters have an opportunity to chose a liberal to represent them as they did only two short weeks ago

2.

Find a way, in compliance with the Elections Act to return the money that the Liberal Riding association transferred to you to run your campaign. This totaled approximately $96,755. This amount came from donations to the Liberal Party and were intended to elect a Liberal, not a Conservative. You would not have received those funds from the Liberal riding association if you ran as a Conservative. A spreadsheet is attached providing a breakdown of the amounts.

Very interesting. Wonder if they could sue him for misrepesentation or fraud if he doesn’t pay up. Few people have mentioned the citizens in his riding. They voted for a Liberal got him elected and he immeadiately became a conservative. This isn’t a matter of someone resigning after a year on principal and sitting as an independent. Do Canadian voters have any rights? Do elections matter?

Ivan Curman, President of the Vancouver Kingsway Federal Liberal Riding Association has the letter on the constituency website and

a petition requesting a by-election that you can download, circulate and return to us

.

They also ask that people

Contact David Emerson and express your views about his decision. His constituency office number is 604-775-6263 and his email address is email hidden; JavaScript is required

The Canadian blogosphere reacts rapidly. Recall and election blogs were created the same day for a politician who changed party’s 2 weeks after election for a cabinet seat.

David Emerson was a Liberal cabinet minister who campaigned for reelection as a liberal. He won reelection as a liberal January 23/06. 2 weeks later, Feb 6/06 he switched parties and becomes a conservative and a cabinet minister.

I don’t know if there is a Yiddish word for extreme chutzpah, but if there is, it applies to Emerson. He won the riding by getting 43 % of the vote. The NDP got 33% and the conservative candidate got 19 %. Here’s what Stephen Harper said about one person crossing the floor from his party recently.

There’s no grand principle involved in this decision, just ambition.” – Stephen Harper reacting to Belinda Stronach’s defection to the Liberal government in May, 2005.

When Belinda switched, Harper said this

“We don’t go out of our way to romance MPs to get them to cross the floor,” Harper said. “The Liberals will do anything to win. We are trying to create a principled party where people act in a principled way.

“We’re fairly cautious about encouraging party jumping because I think that’s the kind of thing that generates cynicism and frankly when somebody jumps once you’re not sure to trust them that they won’t jump the next time.

“So I will always handle with an extraordinary degree of caution.”

So he lost his principals and his party’s principals the very day he got sworn in. Maybe his new motto is sell out early. Here’s how Emerson characterized his view of Stephen Harper after the election via Ahab’s Whale

“Emerson added he is going to enjoy keeping tabs on Prime Minister-elected Stephen Harper.

“I’m going to be Stephen Harper’s worst enemy,” he warned. “We’re going to stir the pot and you better believe we are going to make a heck of a lot of noise.”

Remember he said this only 2 weeks ago. So now his worst enemy is his best buddy?

Here’s his new tune. He said he would have “absolutely” stayed on in Paul Martin’s cabinet if the former PM had been re-elected. via Babbling Brooks Why didn’t he just say I’d sell myself to the highest bidder?

Here’s the Remove Emerson Blog. Here’s the Elect Emerson Blog, which demands that David Emerson must resign and be elected as a Conservative. Joan Tintor offers these suggestions for citizen action.

“Below is a quick list of suggested actions loyal Conservatives can take to show their disapproval and dissent:

1.Do not make further donations to the party. Write the Conservative Canada Fund and advise why

2. If you receive a fundraising letter, return it with a letter indicating why as above, or simply mark it “Return to Sender – ELECT EMERSON.”

3. Contact your Conservative MP or candidate and advise them that you will not be assisting them in preparing for an election until this matter is resolved in a principled manner.

4. If you are on a riding executive, ask your executive to pass a resolution expressing its opposition about the appointment, and asking the Prime Minister to require Mr. Emerson to seek the support of his constituents as a Conservative. Issue a press release to your local media about your riding’s resolution.”

Wow. Extreme democracy in action. And both are run by Conservatives, not betrayed Liberals.

There’s also an online petition to recall Emerson and hold an election “so that the people of Vancouver Kingsway and in general all Canadians can be represented by the party and candidate of their choice.” via Remove Emerson

There was a vote held less than 3 months ago on a bill to make MPs who cross the House floor subject to a by-election call which 40 conservative MP’s voted in favour of. You can see a list of who voted in favor of it, including at least one current Tory cabinet minister here at the great How’d They Vote site which allows you to see how your MP voted on different issues so you can hold them accountable.

There are links to the politician’s website where you can encourage them to follow through on their convictions. Hopefully their convictions have not expired yet, this vote was only held 2 and a half months ago.

Here’s a final quote by Emerson during the recent federal election campaign

“The Conservatives want to keep any of their members who might be inclined to say something that would uncover their true intentions and keep them quiet, out of the limelight,” Industry Minister David Emerson said in Vancouver yesterday…

“I’ve got to wonder what it is they’re hiding,” Emerson said in an interview after a speech by Prime Minister Paul Martin.

“They’ve got a message that they’ve been quite successfully getting out to try to pretend they’re moderate on a range of issues where we all know that underneath, when you scratch a bit, they’re not moderate at all.”

Glad he was so honest about his true intentions.

One good thing out of this is to show how quickly the blogosphere can mobilize on something of political importance. Will be interesting to see what the results of the 2 blogs and petitions will be. Maybe not a change of the appointment but possibly a longer application of heat on the new hypocritical conservative leader that talks of transparency and accountability and his first move make’s Paul Martin’s Liberals seemed principled.

  13 Responses to “The Blogosphere. Democracy’s Rapid Reaction Force”

  1. […] Liberal candidate and a defender of that government’s record and platform. Update:Pete Quiley has a summary of the situation […]

  2. […] and sometimes there is nothing wrong with facilitating and participating in that. Update: The Blogosphere: Democracy’s Rapid Reaction Force. […]

  3. […] #8217;s Rapid Reaction Force

    Pete Quily has written an excellent post I linked to bel […]

  4. David Emerson has disenfranchised the people of Vancouver Kingsway, misled his electorate, and should be recalled. His contituency address is
    2148 Kingsway
    Vancouver, BC
    V5N 2T5
    Go there on Wednesday February 8th at 4pm to join others in demanding his resignation, or just leave him a message: 604) 775-6263″

  5. […] ains that away, but it certainly adds another dash of controversy to the issue. Thanks to Pete Quily (no ‘e’) for emailin […]

  6. Thanks for this blog and the links. I am DISGUSTED about the fact that politicians have such little regard for democracy and the voice of the people. I worked very hard to be informed and knew the principles of each party (at least what they wanted the public to believe). Mr. Harper and Mr. Emerson have demoralized thousands of Canadians. Where do these types of politicians come from? It is not to be tolerated! It smells like the Bush-Gore re-count and as we move further into this CPC mandate it will be all manipulation, obfuscation and they will do as they damn well please. Excuse me! I don’t think so. This is Canada. We elected a minority party for a very good reason.

    D. Allen

  7. You’re right about the disgusting feeling this brings about. If they can get away with something this bad on their first day with just a few days of bad press and nothing more, it will only encourgage them to do worse.

    Many did “demand better” but we sure didn’t get better. Maybe the slogan should have read “demand better, but accept less”

    Pete

  8. My first impression about David Emerson switching sides is that to the voter it is a similar situation to the consumer choosing a cell phone service — mostly you latch on to whatever suits your needs at the time. David Emerson is nothing more than a commodity and by he himself putting himself in that situation he has no right to claim “feelings” — He is a piece of meat to be used up and either swallowed to enhance the body or spit out because he doesn’t taste so good, no matter if he has any nutrient value or not… As consumers we seem to be choosing this type of product because it is easier to get or cheaper, instead of looking for just the exact product and service that will make us satified customers instead of accepting something that is ‘good enough for now”.

  9. After campaigning to clean up government, put an end to cronyism, and for a democratically elected Senate, Harper appointed unelected friend and supporter Michal Fortier to the Senate and to Cabinet as a SENIOR CABINET MINISTER, who will be responsible for tens of billions of our tax dollars. Fortier has since said that he just didn’t want to run in the election. Well, Mr. Harper, this is cronyism at its best.

    Here is a petition for Mr. Harper’s unelected friend, Michal Fortier, to resign his senior cabinet post until he runs and wins in a by-election for a seat in the House.

    http://www.petitiononline.com/RMF/

    Please forward this link to as many Canadians as you can.

  10. If I was a member of the riding association which ran the Emerson campaign I would volunteer an unremitting, visible and vocal protest – at his campaign office and wherever he is scheduled till he resigns. We might also audibly question the VANOC and business community spokespersons who expressed such glowing support for Emerson’s act of betrayal and opportunism to the local media and showing what they really think democracy is about.

  11. In the matter of David Emerson switching parties, people should grow up.

    If you are a voter in Vancouver Kingsway – would you rather be represented by an opposition member or a government member? If you were David Emerson, with so much to offer, would you rather be pounding a desk in the commons railing against policies you might well support, or would you want to actually do something for your city, your province and your country?

    The losers here are the Liberals – which is why they’re in a tizzy. More specifically, the losers are the partisans in both the Liberal and Conservative Parties. In the case of the Liberals, they lose a key player in their turnaround strategy. For Conservative partisans, Emerson’s presence means they need to share the spoils with someone they see as an outsider. If they really believe politics is about the best people serving their country in the best manner possible, they will be grateful to see someone with the stature of David Emerson joining the fold. Tories who don’t support him are just petty and small.

    The winners are the City of Vancouver, the Province of BC and the country and the federal government. Whether the Conservatives are winners on this one remains to be seen. But, having received David Emerson in trade for Belinda Stronach, I’d say they traded up.

  12. It would have been a spendid move of American-style bi-partisanship if Mr. Harper had offered Mr. Emerson a Cabinet position while remaining a Liberal–if such is possible in the Canadian system.
    Inducing an MP to cross the floor by offering a Cabinet position is unethical & should require an automatic by-election!

  13. The losers are the city of Vancouver, the province of BC and the entire country.

    Should we just not bother with democracy and political parties and let multimillionare CEO’s with no shame or principal other than the lust for power make all our decisions for us?

    Do we believe democracy or in corporatism? What kind of Canada do you want?

    What kind a stature does a man have when he spends an entire campaign trashing and demonizing his political opponents and then joins them less than 2 weeks after being elected, not out of any great principle other than greed for power?

    “Demand better” but don’t expect you’ll get it.

    One reason why Emerson’s treachery is hitting a nerve across ALL political stripes is that if harper and he get away with it, it show’s that we as voters are irrelevant, and so is democracy. It’s one thing to switch parties several months or years into a term over principal but it’s totally different to do it BEFORE YOU EVEN SPENT ONE DAY IN PARLIAMENT!!!!!

 Leave a Reply

(required)

(required)

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>