A Debate History Lesson

Surely by now you've hear all about the decision by the elite media consortium to exclude Green Party of Canada leader Elizabeth May from the televised debates coming up next week (English, April 12th and French April 14th).  

This decision shows a disgusting lack of regard for the Canadian people and for our democracy. The  current powers that be have come up with all sorts of lame reasons why the Greens are not allowed, the main one being that the Green Party of Canada held no seats at the time that parliament fell because the Conservatives were held in contempt, a first for the Commonwealth, by the way.

Here are a few examples from the past, which, in my opinion help to illustrate that the media consortium has it's own agenda.

In the 1988 federal election the Bloc Quebecois did not exist. Gilles Duceppe was elected in a by-election two years later ...as an independent, not as a Bloc candidate. Despite having no seats in Parliament, no official recognition from the Speaker and only 75 candidates out of 295 ridings, the Bloc Quebecois was included in both the French and English debates. The Bloc has never fielded a candidate outside Quebec but continues to participate in debates in both official languages.

In the 1988 general election, the Reform Party ran 72 candidates, received 276,000 votes and won no seats. By the time of the 1993 election, the Reform Party’s only sitting member was Deborah Grey following her win in a 1989 by-election. Reform did not have Official Party status and did not win a seat in the 1988 election but Preston Manning participated in the 1993 leaders’ debate, based on the 11,154 votes Deborah Grey received in a 1989 by-election with a 47 per cent turnout. In 1993, the party ran only 207 candidates.

In 1979, the Social Credit Party was excluded from the debate despite the fact that it had 11 seats in Parliament at the time of dissolution. And in 1997, both the NDP and Progressive Conservatives were included in the debate despite not having Official Party status.

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