That's right. You read it right. I am not making this up, I am not kidding. Read it here. The CBC.
And Martin even put her in the cabinet as minister of human resources. Wow. I didn't think he had it in him to stoop this low.
I thought I'd seen all the craziness I thought I was going to see last week, but this takes the cake. Again, I repeat, I am not making this up. Check out Belinda's link, or what used to be Belinda's link. That tells you all you need to know.
You know what this means, of course. It means this government has one more vote to survive the confidence vote. It means the opposition needs BOTH Independents Cadman and Kilgour now. And I didn't think Paul Martin would stoop this low, to try and steal people off the opposition benches but he has. Now this government looks worse than ever.
I don't think it's a done deal that this government has assured its survival. This move is so despicable that maybe this might drive both Chuck Cadman AND David Kilgour over to vote non-confidence. This certainly throws the whole issue of an election up in the air. Maybe that's a good thing from my vantagepoint: the Tories were going to be defeated in Toronto anyway. But this move by Martin and Stronach is really bad news for the country. What a shady shady deal. As Andrew Coyne said before and I'll repeat it here: is there anybody in this country who isn't on the take?! Yecch.
This is going to drive the Tories nuts, and drive the people of Canada nuts. It's already driven the listeners on CFRB nuts: they're calling her a whore and worse.
I wouldn't quite use that language. But I've got to say today, I've lost all respect for Belinda Stronach. I used to respect her opinions but not now. She's no better than Scott Brison in my books. Anyway, hopefully Lois Brown wins the Tory nomination now and defeats her and sends her back to Magna. What a bad move by Belinda. She can forget about ever becoming Prime Minister of Canada now.
And I'll bet Peter MacKay has lost all respect for his girlfriend (?) (!) (?) as well. Well, Peter, that's it, you need to get a new girlfriend, unless you're going to cross the floor, too. I'll bet that caucus meeting fiasco when she was basically the lone wolf trying to talk sense into Harper was the last straw. I read that Harper gave her a dressing down about it, and whatever the real story was, she was isolated in the party over her stance. I'm sure she was not amused.
One thing this does is make MacKay look like the clear next leader-in-waiting for the Tory Party, in spite of that Orchard baggage- provided of course that he breaks up with Belinda. This has raised all kinds of questions about Harper's leadership ability. If we go into an election now and Harper loses, he's finished. If he even loses this budget vote he's damaged in my estimation. Harper dropped the ball with the Red Tories, bigtime.
All in all, though, Belinda never really fit in with the Tories. She had a lot of liberal views and a lot of the grassroots people just hated her. Her stance supporting same-sex marriage just killed her. I imagine the people at Free Dominion are really trashing her. But then they always did trash her. They never liked her over there.
As for me: boy it was a close call last year, but am I ever glad now that I worked for and cast my vote in the leadership race for Tony Clement, and not for this lousy woman... or for that matter, Harper. Both of them look just terrible today. This is a terrible day for the Tory party and an even worse day for Canada. But hopefully something good still will happen on Thursday to put an end to all this idiocy in Ottawa and end this worst Parliament in the history of the country.
MORE ON BELINDA
The reaction to this bonehead move by Belinda is sweeping the blogosphere. Ben at the Tiger in Winter thought that it was a hoax when he heard about it. He also says Cadman and Kilgour, it's up to you now. Andrew Coyne says "there are no words." Adam Daifallah seems to think it's not that big a deal, it's politics. He doesn't seem too broken up about it.
Colby Cosh is positively outraged. He's livid at the refusal of the government to resign over the week of defeats last week, which bought the Liberals time to "buy off" an opposition member. "The whole point of the tradition that the confidence of the House will be tested at once, upon the government's defeat in a supply-related division, is to prevent exactly the sort of shenanigan just perpetrated." He's calling this a banana republic-style power tactic and was even hoping the Queen might save this country from this "crazed, lawless regime."
Best line of the day comes from Bob Runciman who called Belinda a "dipstick"... albeit an "attractive one". CFRB is having a field day over that one.
All I gotta say is that I'm really mad as hell and this Parliament is a disgrace, and this government is an even worse disgrace. I'm embarrassed to be a Canadian today.