If he’s set on swearing in his new cabinet as planned next Wednesday, Justin Trudeau may have to do something he likely thought had dropped off his to-do list forever: namely, call on Stephen Harper to resign — not publicly, necessarily, and with the greatest possible respect for the outgoing leader, but definitively.
Or, if he has indeed done so, make a public announcement to that effect.
Because at the moment, it doesn’t appear that Harper has formally served notice to Governor General David Johnston — or anyone else — that he will voluntarily cede power to the incoming Liberal government next week. No official notice has been released to the media, or posted to the Rideau Hall website, nor has Harper’s office issued a statement confirming that he will resign.
Shortly after this story went out, the governor general’s senior communications advisor Marie-Eve Letourneau got in touch to say that, “in keeping with Canadian practice,” Harper “signified his intention to resign when he visited the Governor General at Rideau Hall immediately following the election,” although he won’t formally do so until Nov. 4, “just prior to the swearing-in of the new ministry.”It would be a hypothetical bet, but if Harper lost to a minority, who would put money on him actually resigning without a messy fight (or at least a hissy fit). The quirkiness of our system might have saved us from a big problem.Recommend this Post
She also said that the governor-general met with Trudeau following the election as well.
What we still don’t know, however, is why the process has been conducted in such a clandestine fashion, without even an after-the-fact advisory that these meetings had taken place. There is also some uncertainty around whether that secrecy is, as Letourneau put it, “in keeping with Canadian practice.”