Federal Liberals expect party leader Michael Ignatieff to steer clear of an absolute commitment to bring down Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government when he gives his verdict today on the Conservatives’ handling of the economic crisis.
But there is speculation that Ignatieff may threaten to defeat the Conservative minority later this week unless Harper agrees to improve the government’s response to the recession, possibly by immediately moving to enrich Employment Insurance payments or speed up infrastructure payments. The Liberal caucus is meeting at 10 a.m. today and Ignatieff will announce his decision publicly an hour later.
“I don’t think Canadians want an election. I don’t think I want an election,” Ignatieff told CBC-TV yesterday. “But I have to do my job. And my job is to hold the government accountable.”
Ignatieff spent the weekend studying the 234-page “report card” released Thursday on how the government is responding to the recession. “I’ve gone through it carefully and I’ll let Canadians know what I think about it tomorrow,” he said.
The Liberals have derided the report as misleading.