For everyone who always complains how boring Canadian politics can be, I give you the 40th Parliament. What an idiot Stephen Harper is. He overplayed his hand, and now is crying foul that the opposition called his bluff.
First of all, don't believe the Liberals, NDP or the Bloc that this is about the lack of the Conservatives action on the current world wide economic crisis. BULLSHIT! This is about Harper trying to kick his opponents when their down. As part of their budget statement along with freezing civil service wages and taking away their right to strike for 3 years(smooth move, morons) they would also get rid of public subsidies for political parties. Therein lies Harper's gamble. Sure it would take away money from the Tories, but their coffers are full, so they would be okay. For the other parties, in their current states, without those subsidies, their bankrupt. No real opposition, Harper would be closer to a majority in the future which he so desperately craves. On top of that, he's made the vote on the statement a confidence vote, meaning that if a majority of the House M.P.'s vote against it, the government falls. Harper figured the opposition parties wouldn't have the balls to bring the government down and risk another election. What he must have forgot, is that this is a Parliamentary democracy, in that, yes normally and election is called when a government falls, UNLESS their are enough members in the House willing to form another government, which under the British North America Act which created Canada, is allowed. Harper never counted on that as disparate as the opposition parties are,they would band together to take the Tories down AND be willing to govern together. Nothing like the threat of losing your source of funding to brings rivals together.
Now as a hail mary, Harper is asking the Governor General to "prorogue" or suspend Parliament. He brings this all on himself, and now he's asking for a timeout? Now the GG has the final word, since in our Canadian Parliamentary system, the current King or Queen of England is our actual Head of State, represented by the GG. The GG can suspend Parliament, or she can allow the vote go as planned and again decide, if she will allow the coalition to form the government or dissolve Parliament and send us back to the polls. No matter what the Tory spin doctors tell you, this is all perfectly legal and well within the bounds of the BNA.
Now if parliament is suspended, Harper is just prolonging the inevitable. He is in a minority position. Either he goes down Monday, or 6 weeks from now. Either way, his goose is cooked, and he lit the fire. Looks good on him.
Sure the opposition parties are taking advantage of the system to destroy him, but he handed them the weapons, and hey, that's politics for ya! Harper loved ruling by the sword, now he must be willing to die by it.