Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Where's the accountability? (Duff Conacher)

Where's the accountability?

By Duff Conacher, Ottawa Citizen January 25, 2011

Prime Minister Harper's claim that the Conservatives have delivered what they promised five years ago is as misleading as the promises were.

The Conservatives promised a federal accountability act that would strengthen government rules in 55 ways, but introduced an act in April 2006 with only 29 changes. The Conservatives also rejected 25 changes to strengthen the accountability act proposed by the opposition parties in 2006. The accountability act weakened government accountability by cutting eight key ethics rules, and the Conservatives also broke their promises to fix election dates, hold free votes on most issues, stop appointing election candidates, and stop appointing party supporters to the Senate and other positions.

As a result, as several scandals have revealed in the past few years, secret, unethical donations and lobbying, patronage and cronyism, unfair snap elections, wasteful spending, and excessive government secrecy are all still legal.

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