Comparative Canada-U.S. Juvenile Politics
The governing Conservative Party has recently taken some heat for juvenile behavior in Parliament, particularly when it comes to women speaking in the House. The touchstone for this controversy was the Conservatives heckling and shouting down Liberal MP Carolyn Bennett’s question about how swine flu vaccination impacted women. The media took notice, and opposition MPs and leaders demanded apologies for the infantile behavior.
Well, it looks like our neighbours to the south, also embroiled in a health care debate of another kind (health care reform, not swine flu) seem to have taken notice, with the Republican Party stealing a few plays out of the clever Canadian Parliamentary playbook (emphasis on play) with with Republican lawmakers in the House of Representatives screaming and shouting down House members of the Democratic Women’s caucus speaking to health care reform.
With Canadians often wrestling with the question of government reform, such as adopting a republican system akin to the Americans, it’s pleasant to see that whatever the political system– parliamentary or republican– neither the Canadian nor American House speakers can maintain proper House decorum.