If this motion were passed with the support of other parties, it would lead to an election campaign in the midst of a pandemic.
“What is more dangerous – mismanaging a crisis or taking the time to change who is managing the crisis? Blanchet said at a press conference in Ottawa on Wednesday.
The BQ leader said he had not had formal discussions with the NDP or the Conservatives over his plan. He said Elections Canada is preparing to hold a secure election in case they take place during the pandemic.
Elections Canada is preparing
Elections Canada has created an internal working group to do “preparedness planning” for elections during the pandemic. The group examines issues such as:
- Possible physical distance measurements for polling stations and Elections Canada offices.
- The capacity of the existing postal voting system.
- How to recruit, train and ensure the safety of election workers.
- Identify alternative options for polling station locations that could become unavailable due to COVID-19.
“The working group will examine potential legal, administrative and operational changes in order to hold an accessible and safe election,” according to the Elections Canada website.
Normally, a fixed date election means that an election takes place every four years, but with a minority government, an election can take place any time the House loses confidence in the government.
Blanchet’s remarks come as the House of Commons holds a rare summer sitting to debate the government’s response to COVID-19.
Later today, the Finance Committee will continue its investigation into the government’s decision to select WE Charity to run a $ 900 million student volunteer grant program. Trudeau and others argued that the civil service deemed the organization the only one qualified to lead the large-scale initiative.
WATCH | MPs debate the government’s response to COVID-19:
Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough and Small Business Minister Mary Ng are both expected to appear before the committee.
Yesterday Qualtrough testified before the House Ethics Committee, which is also studying the WE Charity issue, and admitted the government had “dropped the ball.” She said she offered “no excuse or justification” for Trudeau and Morneau’s roles in the resulting controversy.
Trudeau released a statement on Tuesday saying he had full faith in Morneau, saying any report to the contrary was false. The statement was released amid speculation that the finance minister could step down.