May 2nd marks the two year anniversary of the Harper government’s current mandate.
Two years have passed since the Tories won the election that allowed them to break away from the shackles of a minority and to implement their agenda unfettered.
It's been a tumultuous time: Like all governments, they've had their share of successes and controversies. They've been praised for their handling of the economy, while taking a lot of criticism for shutting down debate and for their record on the environment.
We went to our expert political panel to get their thoughts on the first two years. We asked them to identify the good, the bad and the ugly of the Harper majority government.
Here are their responses:
Warren Kinsella, Liberal insider and Sun News Network political analyst:
The good? Harper made good on his promise on womens' reproductive choice - to the shock of people like me. He said he wouldn't reopen abortion, and he didn't. He's paid a price for that in caucus, but he hasn't wavered. He deserves credit for that.
The bad? There's been plenty of bad - but, just this week, the revelation that these clowns actually LOST 3 billion dollars. And that's not all - it was money that was supposed to go to national security. On the two things the Cons always claim to be best - fiscal probity and protecting citizens - they look like a joke.
The ugly? The fact that - despite all the bad stuff - they're going to win again. As long as progressives are split, conservatives are going to come up the middle to win. With a lesser share of the vote.
Alex Tsakumis, Vancouver based political analyst and radio host:
The good? Their steady hand on the tiller is the key to their existence and, frankly, buoyancy with the public. They've retained a good portion of their electoral fold since the last election, and for good reason. Their economic record is holding them in good stead with the public, generally speaking.
The bad? I think the Enbridge pipeline is a bad deal for Canadians, particularly British Columbians, as presently constituted. It represents a poorly thought out proposition, desperately in need of redress.
The ugly? It might seem like a small matter but firing clerics and rabbis in the prison system and insisting that inmates, regardless of religion, can be spiritually served by Christian priests, seems high handed and offside.
[ More Political Points: Is the Harper government trying to control the CBC? ]
Gerry Nicholls, Right leaning political consultant:
The Good? The Harper government’s accomplishments include, ending the gun registry, scrapping the wheat board monopoly, reforming MP pensions and annoying left wing academics.
The Bad? The Harper government’s using tax dollars pay for a hugely expensive Conservative propaganda campaign, otherwise known as Economic Action Plan advertising is definitely bad.
The Ugly? Instead of providing fiscally conservative government, the Harper Tories did the opposite: they made government bigger, they increased spending and amassed massive deficits.
(Photo courtesy of Reuters)
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