Democracy Watch gives F to Canada’s ruling party

The Conservative-led federal government has received an F grade in democracy. Democracy Watch the Ottawa-based non-profit non-partisan citizen advocacy group issued its seventh annual “good government report card” on February 5 which incidentally is also the seventh anniversary of the passage of the federal Accountability Act.

Though it says the legislation has increased government accountability in some areas Democracy Watch’s report card criticizes the feds for failing to keep campaign promises made in both 2006 and 2011 to increase government transparency and accountability. If they had the organization says the Conservatives would have received a B-.

Democracy Watch also criticizes the government for its handling of the Senate spending scandal “excessive secrecy” in multiple levels of the administration and failure to close legal loopholes that allow unethical behaviour by politicians and bureaucrats.

“The federal government’s democracy and accountability enforcement system is the scandal because among many other highly questionable activities it is still effectively legal for a lobbyist… to fundraise for and make secret donations to nomination race and party leadership candidates to lobby in secret to make secret fixed deals with cabinet ministers their staff handpicked cabinet patronage appointees and government employees and for everyone involved to be dishonest about their secret unethical relationships” said Democracy Watch board member Duff Conacher in a press release.