PEI

Government running out clock on plebiscite motion 'indefensible': Green Party leader

P.E.I. Green Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker is accusing the government of conducting a filibuster against his motion in support of the results of the province's electoral reform plebiscite.

2 Liberal MLAs spoke for almost three quarters of the allotted time

Green Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker moved that the government hold the next provincial election using a mixed member proportional representation system, which was the system favoured in the plebiscite. (Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island)

P.E.I. Green Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker is accusing the government of conducting a filibuster against his motion in support of the results of the province's electoral reform plebiscite.

Bevan-Baker, with the support of Progressive Conservative MLAs, moved Tuesday that the government hold the next provincial election using a mixed member proportional representation system, which was the system favoured in the plebiscite.

There were two hours allotted for the debate Tuesday. Five opposition members and one government member took up the first 20 minutes, not including the speaker's introductions. Two government members then spoke for a further 92 minutes, running out the clock on the debate, so that there was no vote.

  • Peter Bevan-Baker: 8 minutes
  • Sidney MacEwen: 2 minutes
  • Brad Trivers: 2 minutes
  • Jamie Fox: 2.5 minutes
  • Matthew MacKay: 1 minute
  • Paula Biggar: 4.5 minutes
  • Tina Mundy: 35.5 minutes
  • Jordan Brown: 56.5 minutes

"Filibustering is an arguably valid opposition move because they have no other power in a House ruled by majority government," said Bevan-Baker in a statement to CBC News.

Jordan Brown reacts to the calling of time on Tuesday's debate on honouring the results of the electoral reform plebiscite. (Province of P.E.I.)

"For a majority government to do it is in my opinion indefensible, and tells me that they are simply trying to avoid a vote on the motion."

It is possible the motion will come up for debate again later in the session, should the opposition choose to bring it back to the floor in their allotted time.

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