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Sound and Fury, Signifying…?

When Iggy took the podium today he was full of fire and brimstone, sternly taking the Conservative government to task for its recent shenanigans. “We hold them responsible for telling us there would no recession when the rest of the world was already taking action…this is a record of reckless, arrogant, and short-sighted government.” Strong stuff. Those who hoped that this language meant the Liberals would reject the Tories’ new budget proposal were in for a rude awakening, however, as Ignatieff then toned his rhetoric down dramatically and introduced the crucial caveat: “But here is the point—the budget also contains important concessions…These measures are only in the budget because the opposition parties did their job.” This afternoon in Parliament, Ignatieff introduced an amendment to the budget, meant to “put this government on probation”—it requires that the government issue updates in March, June, and December on the implementation of the stimulus package. Question Period is ongoing at this time, and Ignatieff is facing far more severe challenges from one-time coalition partners in the Bloc and NDP than from the Tories. The Conservatives appear poised to accept the amendment: Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry Mike Lake just took to the floor to thank the Liberals for their support.