News

OTTAWA, Jan 28 (LSN.ca) – LifeSite is at the United Alternative/Reform Convention in Ottawa.
Both positive and negative developments have taken place from the pro-life and pro-family
perspective. Of greatest concern so far has been the delegates’ approval of Reform’s MP
voting policy in the UA. The passed item states “Where an MP finds that a clear consensus has
been reached on an issue; his or her responsibility is to represent that consensus over party
or personal views.”

The item was passed with a strong majority. Some speakers asked for support for an alternate
wording that might have allowed MPs the right to vote according to their consciences. The
response to this made it clear that most Reformers at the conference consider that populist
principles of MP accountability to voters must take precedence on all issues. Life and family
organization leaders were hoping that the new party would not clone Reform on this and would
not ask their MPs to be potentially forced to vote in violation of deeply held personal
principles.

A major victory for social conservatives at the conference came with the adoption of social
conservative commitments into the UA constitution.  Despite the objection of some
participants vehemently opposed to such initiatives, the social conservative commitments were
entrenched in the party constitution, which would require a vote of a two-thirds majority to
remove it.  The UA constitution includes the clause: “We recognize that all human beings
possess the fundamental human rights to life, freedom and the right to own and enjoy
property.”

While the family issues are to be undertaken Saturday, one major victory for social
conservatives in the policy debate came with the passing of a resolution affirming the
supremacy of parliament over “unaccountable judges and human rights officials.”“We
therefore affirm the legitimacy of the use of Section 33 notwithstanding power in the Charter
of Rights and Freedoms in cases where a court ruling conflicts with the intent of Parliament
and the will of the people,” says the approved policy.

In his speech Reform Party leader Preston Manning made specific mention of social
conservativism as a party identity along with fiscal conservativism and political reform.
He called for a “working together” of all these conservative factions to form a comprehensive
conservative alternative.
UA RETAINS REFORM MP VOTING POLICY

OTTAWA, Jan 28 (LSN.ca) – LifeSite is at the United Alternative/Reform Convention in Ottawa.
Both positive and negative developments have taken place from the pro-life and pro-family
perspective. Of greatest concern so far has been the delegates’ approval of Reform’s MP
voting policy in the UA. The passed item states “Where an MP finds that a clear consensus has
been reached on an issue; his or her responsibility is to represent that consensus over party
or personal views.”

The item was passed with a strong majority. Some speakers asked for support for an alternate
wording that might have allowed MPs the right to vote according to their consciences. The
response to this made it clear that most Reformers at the conference consider that populist
principles of MP accountability to voters must take precedence on all issues. Life and family
organization leaders were hoping that the new party would not clone Reform on this and would
not ask their MPs to be potentially forced to vote in violation of deeply held personal
principles.

A major victory for social conservatives at the conference came with the adoption of social
conservative commitments into the UA constitution.  Despite the objection of some
participants vehemently opposed to such initiatives, the social conservative commitments were
entrenched in the party constitution, which would require a vote of a two-thirds majority to
remove it.  The UA constitution includes the clause: “We recognize that all human beings
possess the fundamental human rights to life, freedom and the right to own and enjoy
property.”

While the family issues are to be undertaken Saturday, one major victory for social
conservatives in the policy debate came with the passing of a resolution affirming the
supremacy of parliament over “unaccountable judges and human rights officials.”“We
therefore affirm the legitimacy of the use of Section 33 notwithstanding power in the Charter
of Rights and Freedoms in cases where a court ruling conflicts with the intent of Parliament
and the will of the people,” says the approved policy.

In his speech Reform Party leader Preston Manning made specific mention of social
conservativism as a party identity along with fiscal conservativism and political reform.
He called for a “working together” of all these conservative factions to form a comprehensive
conservative alternative.

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