MPs To Vote on Invoking Emergencies Act for Blockades
There is one day left of debate on the government's decision to invoke the act.
MPs will vote on the motion Monday at 8 p.m. ET, and it is expected to pass with the joint support of the Liberals and NDP. The Bloc Quebecois and the Conservatives are against it.
MPs have been debating the measure since Thursday morning, though the 15 hours of debate planned for Friday were cancelled due to safety concerns as police moved in to remove protesters still blockading the streets outside.
Speaking to The Canadian Press in an interview ,Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino said he has no doubt the government's decision to invoke the act was the right call.
“The Emergencies Act has been instrumental in turning the tide against the illegal blockades,” he said.
Police began issuing written warnings to protesters to leave on Thursday, and the next day pushed them out with a show of force that lasted into Saturday. As of Sunday, most streets were cleared.
Ontario Conservative MP Michael Barrett said during Saturday's debate that invoking the Act was just a “mad grab at power” because the charges being laid against people arrested were not new laws.
“The charges that are being laid in Ottawa are for mischief and conspiracy to commit,” he said. “We do not require an Emergencies Act to deal with these things. We have a public order operation taking place on the streets of Ottawa. It is not an national emergency.”
Fellow Ontario Conservative MP Marilyn Gladu said on Twitter Sunday the Liberals should rein their use of the act back in now that the demonstrations appear to be over.
“If it was just about clearing the blockage and not about a power grab and government over reach, the Liberals would rescind these measures,” she said.