PMO uses majority to rig Senate rules and force through Bill C-377

June 29, 2015

The Prime Minister has used his Conservative Senate majority to rig Senate rules, shut down debate and force through Bill C-377.

“Several senators tried to do their job and demonstrate that the Senate really is a chamber of second sober thought, but Prime Minister Harper appears to have thrown a temper tantrum, stepping in to rig the rules, shut down debate, and make things go his way,” said CLC president Hassan Yussuff.

“It’s a corrupt, cynical move that once more demonstrates that unions are far more democratic, transparent and accountable to their members than this prime minister and his government are to taxpayers,” he added.

The Conservatives have tried to spin Bill C-377 as being about union transparency, but experts from across the spectrum agree that it’s really about red tape, that will force unions, their suppliers and other businesses they work with to spend millions of dollars and thousands of hours producing and processing expense reports to be reviewed and filed at taxpayer expense.

The bill has been opposed by everyone from the NHL Players Association to Conservative and Liberal senators, constitutional experts, Canada’s privacy commissioner, the Canadian Bar Association, the insurance and mutual fund industry, seven provinces, and a long and diverse list of others in the business, financial, professional, legal, labour, and academic communities, private and public, federal and provincial.

Yussuff thanked the minority of Senators who listened to the experts, stood their ground and opposed the legislation.

“What’s happened in the Senate is just one more reason that we’ll be working hard to win a new government this fall, one that prioritizes the economy, jobs and health care over political manoeuvring,” said Yussuff.

“The CLC and its affiliates will be going to court to challenge the legality and the constitutionality of this legislation,” he added.