NDP launches new campaign to abolish the Senate

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Thomas Mulcair said Wednesday morning that it's time to start a conversation across Canada about abolishing the Senate. The Official Opposition leader called the ongoing Senate expenses scandal a turning point on the issue, "the whitewashing by the Senate was the beginning of the end of the Senate."

The NDP also launched a new website on Wednesday to promote their Senate abolition campaign -- rolluptheredcarpet.ca 

The site encourages Canadians to sign a petition for Senate abolition, giving the following rationale for eliminating the upper house of Parliament: 

While Canadians are working harder just to make ends meet, the Senate in Ottawa is working less, but increasing in size and cost. It sits only 90 days a year and costs taxpayers over $90 million to run.

Unelected and unaccountable senators represent the parties that appointed them, not their regions or the Canadian people. They are only required to work three days a week – when they actually bother to show up.

Provinces like Manitoba and Quebec scrapped their “Senates” years ago. The people of New Zealand have also done away with their upper chamber. It’s time for Canada to do the same.

Stephen Harper once called the Senate a "relic of the 19th century." But he's stacked the Senate with 58 partisan appointments since becoming Prime Minister.

It's time to abolish the Senate.

Meanwhile, CBC.ca reported Wednesday that Liberal Senator Jim Munson is alleging interference from the Prime Minister's Office in the "whitewash" of the report on Mike Duffy's expenses: "We feel that there has been political interference with the Prime Minister's Office in the workings of the Senate internal economy committee ...We feel that Senator Duffy was given an easier ride than the other senators -- that words were taken out of the original Senate report dealing with this and that the same wording should have been there in that particular Senate report."

Look for more coverage of the Senate expenses scandal today from our parliamentary reporter Karl Nerenberg. 

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