Legislative Report (11 July 2007)

Premier's Bus Tour Ditched

“Have you ever wondered what kinds of songs politicians sing on a road trip? ‘Usually travel songs’ said Premier Lorne Calvert. ‘Something simple for members to remember.’ The bus tour allows the government to hear the issues of residents first hand, said Calvert.”
- Prince Albert Daily Herald
Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The people of Saskatchewan learned a lot about Lorne Calvert’s summer bus tour in that newspaper article last year. In addition to singing, it seems the Premier and the assembled party faithful enjoyed the “horse game” during these long bus rides. As the Premier explained, whoever sees a horse gets a point. For some reason left unexplained in the article, a white horse is worth extra points. Never let it be said that your government wasted its time.

Last year’s summer bus tour also made news for where it didn’t go. The Saskatchewan Party challenged Lorne Calvert to drive a route mapped out by the people of this province featuring their nominees for the worst sections of pavement in Saskatchewan. For some strange reason, the Premier declined the invitation.

This year, just months before the anticipated provincial election, we were all waiting to hear about an even bigger and more extensive public consultation tour. Then came a surprise announcement last week. There will be no Lorne Calvert bus tour this year. It’s been cancelled.

Why wouldn’t you want to hear from the people of Saskatchewan? Well, I guess Lorne Calvert had a pretty good idea about what people were going to say. They were going to complain about his government’s failure to provide any support or hope for rural communities facing school closures. They were going to tell the Premier how they are fed up with crumbling highways that ruin their vehicles and discourage tourist traffic to some of the finest recreational destinations in North America.

People were going to tell Lorne Calvert how it’s wrong to withhold information from police about public funds disappearing from the NDP caucus and keeping covering up the story. People were going to remind Lorne Calvert how upset they were when they heard how Murdoch Carriere received $275,000 after he was fired for harassment and convicted of assault.

I think it’s safe to assume the Premier and his political advisors took at look at their dismal performance since last summer, their complete lack of any new ideas and a growing level of public hostility and decided a final bus tour would be a very bad idea.

The Premier has finally realized what people outside of the Legislature have known for months—most people are angry and fed-up with his out-of-touch government and want a new one.

So, Mr. Calvert, keep your bus in the garage if you want. You’ll be hearing from the people of Saskatchewan soon enough. And you probably won’t be very happy with their final judgement.

If you have a question about this report or any other matter, just Contact Lyle.

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