From The Chronicle Herald
Scott Brison scored a surprising victory Wednesday when the Kings-Hants Liberal MP’s motion for Parliament to study income inequality in Canada surprisingly passed through the House of Commons.
Conservatives had signalled they would oppose the study and could normally have killed it with their majority. But the vote was not whipped, so MPs did not have to follow party lines.
In the end, 23 Conservative backbenchers broke ranks, to allow the motion to pass 161-138.
The Liberals and the NDP unanimously supported such a study. Parliament’s finance committee will undertake it.
The vote kicked off a mammoth voting session expected to last about 24 hours.
From the Hill
The House of Commons passed Brison’s motion to do a study on income inequality in Canada. Joanne de Montigny, a graduate student at U. of Ottawa who was in the gallery, reports. The process of conducting this study will hopefully provide some opportunity to raise significant issues and help to keep them on the public radar screen.
"the Standing Committee on Finance be instructed to undertake a study on income inequality in Canada and that this study include, but not be limited to:
(i) a review of Canada’s federal and provincial systems of personal income taxation and income supports,
(ii) an examination of best practices that reduce income inequality and improve GDP per capita,
(iii) the identification of any significant gaps in the federal system of taxation and income support that contribute to income inequality, as well as any significant disincentives to paid work in the formal economy that may exist as part of a “welfare trap”,
(iv) recommendations on how best to improve the equality of opportunity and prosperity for all Canadians;
and that the Committee report its findings to the House within one year of the adoption of this motion." - from the motion as originally put forward