Harper Says Only Queen Elizabeth Can Remove Him From Office
OTTAWA — A visibly riled Stephen Harper backtracked on earlier promises to resign graciously if he loses in Monday’s election, telling CTV today that he will “go out kicking and screaming” if anyone tries to take his title away.
“Will I resort to getting physical? If I have to — yes,” Harper snapped in response to a Canada AM reporter asking him about polls showing Conservatives rapidly regaining ground on the Liberals on the final weekend but still trailing by up to 5 percentage points.
“I remind you that I am the Prime Minister of Canada today and I will be the Prime Minister of Canada on October 20th…and October 21st…and October 22nd…etcetera, etcetera, etcetra. No matter the election outcome.”
“Only Her Royal Majesty Queen Elizabeth II herself can strip me of my title.”
“Doesn’t anybody read my omnibus bills?”
Harper’s about-face comes after repeated statements that he would “be a gentleman” and clean out his office immediately if either Justin Trudeau’s Liberals or Thomas Mulcair’s NDP win more seats than the Conservatives. Today Harper reneged on those promises and pointed out that he said he would give up his office but never said he would give up the title of Prime Minister.
“Protocol says that the incumbent Prime Minister is first in line to form a new government,” said a spokesperson for the Queen’s viceregal representative, Governor General of Canada David Johnston, following Harper’s outburst.
“But that discretion is left entirely up to the Governor General of Canada himself and the Queen does not interfere in the affairs of government.”
“And, quite frankly, Her Majesty finds Mr. Harper a bit of a blowhard.”
Both Mulcair and Trudeau have said they will not support a Harper minority government if the Conservatives win but fall short of a majority.
No discussions have taken place towards forming a possible coalition government, however, as the two leaders can’t even stand being in the same room with each other.
Reportering for The Lapine