Conservative MP Brent Rathgeber
"So I was scheduled as I said on March the 20th from 2 to 2:15 to make an SO31. 15 minutes prior to that time i was notified that my turn to present the SO31 was removed. The reason i was given was that they didn't approve of the topic. But there is no reason Mr Speaker why an SO31 should be removed. The only person that can remove that is yourself according to Standing Order 31." - Conservative MP Mark Warawa
Mark Warawa - a Conservative MP from Langley, British Columbia believed the Prime Minister was preventing him from speaking his mind last month in the House of Commons. Mr. Warawa planned to bring forward a motion opposing sex-selective abortion as a Standing Order 31 or SO31 -- one of the few opportunities a backbencher has to speak in the House.
When Warawa's opportunity to speak was revoked other backbenchers - other Conservative backbenchers spoke in his defense, Leon Benoit from Alberta.
Brent Rathgeber is a Conservative MP from Edmonton and he says the Party leadership hurts the democratic process by not allowing backbenchers to speak freely. We reached Mr. Rathgeber on a train heading to Edmonton.
Former Leader of Reform Party of Canada, Preston Manning
Preston Manning knows a lot about keeping a caucus in line. He is the former leader of the Reform Party of Canada. He is also the president and CEO of the Manning Centre for Building Democracy.
In a keynote address at the Manning Centre's annual networking conference last month, he said the Conservative Party's biggest liability is members who say things that "cross the line". Preston Manning joined us from Calgary.
National Post columnist, Andrew Coyne
Our next guest thinks the Tories have a bigger problem. In a National Post column last week, Andrew Coyne says the party is acting less like a team and more like a mob. Andrew Coyne has been listening in Toronto. He was in our studio.
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Last Word - CBC's Backbencher
We've been talking today about backbenchers who'd like to speak out -- but risk infuriating the boss. The award-winning CBC radio show Backbencher explored some of that tension. In one episode, the friendship between the NDP and Conservative MP is not quite enough to save the Tory from an angry phone call from the prime minister. Backbencher gets today's Last Word.
Other segments from today's show: