Oct 16, 2012

By Jane Brown

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Ontario PC leader Tim Hudak says he understands Dalton McGuinty’s decision to resign as a man and a father, but he says, “that doesn’t mean that the work has to grind to a halt.”  Both Hudak and NDP leader Andrea Horvath are asking the outgoing Premier to reconsider his decision to prorogue the legislature until a new Liberal leader is chosen.  Horvath says, “there’s no reason to prorogue while the Liberal party is in a new leadership race.  There’s no reason to prorogue while they’re talking to public sector unions about possibly getting a negotiated deal.” 

In deciding to prorogue the legislature, McGuinty explained it’s because his minority government has not been able to secure a wage freeze with provincial workers.  Fred Hahn is the President of CUPE Ontario.  He says, “they’ve already had the ability to deal with that stuff.  They’ve had the ability to talk to us, they’ve never done so.  Look, they released legislation out into the world through the media without ever talking to us first.  They could’ve done this a long time ago.  This has got nothing to do with us.”

With the legislature now prorogued, all business comes to a stop, including the opposition move to find Energy Minister Chris Bentley in contempt of Parliament.  Bentley is facing a rare censure over his refusal to release documents on closing two gas plants to a legislative committee last May. 

As for who might take over the Liberal party, high profile cabinet ministers such as Deb Matthews, Chris Bentley and Dwight Duncan,  would not discuss the idea.  They all said shortly after McGuinty’s announcement to resign, “this is Dalton’s day.”

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