From various progressive blogs:
Puffing himself up as perhaps no one else can, Iggy said, "We are putting this government on probation." Gee, Mike, I thought a minority government with an unruly opposition was always on probation. Was I missing something? ...
Let's get this straight. The interim leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, our nation's Official Opposition, is content to allow Canada in the face of this fiscal emergency to wallow haplessly under the weight of Harper's visionless bailout budget. ...
If you support this budget, Mikey, you're saying "okay" to everything that's in it - and that's anything but okay to me.
To Ride, Shoot Straight and Speak the Truth:
[I]t's business as usual: the Liberals will talk a good game about opposing the Conservatives, but won't do anything of significance to actually oppose them. Harper has shown, repeatedly, that he can't be trusted. And what the Liberals have come up with is "regular reports" -- from the guy who can't be trusted.
blogging a dead horse:
But by walking away from the historic Liberal-NDP coalition today, Ignatieff is perversely showing confidence in Harper ... [and] showing non-confidence in himself to be Prime Minister in these tough times.
Ignatieff has failed the very first test of his leadership. ... Michael Ignatieff, the first Leader of the Liberal Party who didn't want to be Prime Minister.
The budget falls short, but we're gonna support it, and require reports, and then watch them like hawks, and if it doesn't work the way we think it should we'll bring them down — I think Dion wrote his text for him.
Is that it? Is that seriously Iggy's only condition for passing the budget? Despite broad-based demands the budget does nothing to rectify the absurd qualification regime for EI which excludes over 60% of unemployed Ontarians from the program. ... [B]ut the Ignatieff Liberals have balked at holding Harper's feet to the fire and insisting that the budget be amended to broaden EI eligibility as a condition for Liberal support. ...
This is leadership? This is using your political advantage to leverage concessions?
As for the budget, what can you say about a finance minister who lied to the public about an upcoming surplus and who now says that the economy should show a turnaround by July? ...
Throwing financial crumbs out to a starving public is no way to ensure a solid, timely recovery but that apparently doesn't bother the Liberal party enough to bring down this government. It's politics first. What else is new?
By supporting the Tory government, Ignatieff has joined himself to Harper at the hip, and has in essence entered into a de facto coalition with the Tories, instead of becoming the prime minister of a Liberal-NDP coalition government. ...
Canadians who lose their jobs because the stimulus package did not cover the items set out in the Accord, or amount to the proper sum (at least 2% of GDP for now), should blame not only Harper when they lose their jobs, their homes and their livelihoods, but more particularly, each and every Liberal MP, and vote accordingly at the next election. ...
At a time when courage was called for, the Liberals offered cowardice.
Explaining himself in answer to questions from the media, the Liberal leader was embarrassingly sophomoric. The Liberal-NDP coalition had been useful, he said, because it had forced the government to put many useful measures in the budget. On the other hand, he said the budget remained a "Conservative" budget that likely would not work. Nonetheless, he said he intended to vote for it. ... By turns, Ignatieff sounded like Demosthenes, thundering down condemnation on a government that has repeatedly failed Canadians, and then like an apple-polishing pupil asking for a report card from the head master. ...
If you vote for the Conservative budget, it becomes your budget Mr. Ignatieff, no matter what font the government uses to print its reports for you.
Meanwhile, Jack Layton has become the real leader of the opposition. He showed courage when he reached out to the Liberals to form a progressive coalition ... Michael Ignatieff has walked away from that option. Layton has retained his integrity and his clear understanding of what the country needs. Progressives now have one party and one party only available to them: the NDP.
Tiny Perfect Blog:
An update? Seriously? This is going to be different from the quarterly budget updates how?
And What Do You Think The Reports Will Say Mr. Ignatieff?
The reports will say nothing. Just like they always do in the realm of Stephen Harper. Hidden truths not revealed is what they'll be. Just like when Harper told Canadians there would be no deficit a mere 90 days ago. ...
Say what you want about Stephane Dion, he died fighting for the environment and some sort of principal attached thereto.
While we're at it, let me ask what the hell the rest of the 76 Liberal MPs were thinking over the last 24 hours that would lead their leader to the undramatic decision he made today? What the hell are you thinking? You think that you're doing justice for your constituents? ...
We just sold out our convictions to keep this evil, vindictive Conservative government in power.
Watching Michael Ignatieff chortle with delight at his smartness, and congratulate himself for "putting the Tories on probation", a thought struck me. ...
This morning, he held the balance of power in Canada. ... [N]ow he is asking for report cards every 3 months ... don't hold your breath that Ignatieff will show any intestinal fortitude in 3 months time. He showed none today, so what will suddenly put a spine into this sad Liberal Party caucus?
Northern BC Dipper:
If the Liberals pass up the chance to govern and support the Conservative budget, then later complain about how things would be better under their rule, are we supposed to listen? Or, you know, vote for them?
The conservatives get to continue destroying our future, while the liberals will continue to make weak noises in the corner. We will continue to see corporate welfare for irresponsible financiers, but no welfare for unfortunate individuals. Ignatieff has just given Harper the green light to continue as though he won a majority. ... This is Liberal leadership. Why do people still vote for these spineless weasels?