One of the topics that seems to bring MPs -- and Canadians as a whole -- together is a belief in small business. According to an Angus Reid survey that the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) commissioned last year with HP Canada and Intel Canada, 98 per cent of Canadians said that small business is important to Canada's future.
An important piece of legislation was passed by the House of Commons this week. Bill C-377, sponsored by British Columbia MP Russ Hiebert, will require unions and other labour organizations in Canada to file annual public reports detailing their financial statements, salaries paid to top employees, the amount of time spent on lobbying and political activities, and certain information about expenditures over $5,000. Regardless, union leaders will undoubtedly spend even more money to now try to defeat the bill in the Senate. All of which raises the question: why are union leaders so afraid of transparency?
Ministers, their staff and individual MPs often find it almost impossible to get PMO to move away from a position or talking point that they have adopted. The micro-management style worked initially because in 2006 most staff and ministers were new at what they were doing. Micro-management and message control also worked because of the minority situation the government found itself in. Majority rule has changed that dynamic. All in all, there are Interesting times ahead if you sit on the backbenches of the government side.