Anti-prorogation protesters greet Harper on Yonge St.
Web Staff, cp24.com
Published Wednesday, January 20, 2010 3:35PM EST
About 35 anti-prorogation protesters greeted Stephen Harper with signs and chants outside Toronto’s C.D. Howe Institute on Wednesday before the prime minister’s visit to the Yonge Street think tank.
The protest was organized by Canadians Against Proroguing Parliament, which opposes Harper’s move to suspend Parliament until after the Winter Olympics in Vancouver.
Demonstrators began to amass outside the building at 2 p.m. in advance of Harper’s scheduled roundtable discussion at the conservative think tank at 2:30 p.m.
The group is holding what is expected to be a major rally at Dundas Square on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. It has attracted hundreds of thousands of members to a Facebook group related to the issue.
Saturday’s demonstration will mirror similar gatherings across Canada and is being held the weekend before MPs were originally scheduled to go back to work in Ottawa. Now that Parliament is suspended, MPs won’t be heading back until March 3.
The Liberal Party says its members will return to Ottawa during the suspension to stage discussions on issues they see as important to Canadians.
Harper justified the paid break by saying the government needs time to recalibrate its economic policies. The opposition says he is simply trying to avoid heated testimony on the torture of detainees in Afghanistan.
Polls indicate a majority of Canadians agree with the opposition on this issue.
Earlier Wednesday, Harper attended the Conservative Party’s Greater Toronto Area and Central Ontario Regional Caucus meeting at the InterContinental Hotel, which began at 11 a.m.
With files from The Canadian Press