Motion M-408, the motion introduced by MP Mark Warawa, was deemed non-votable by the Subcommittee on Private Members’ Business this morning. By a unanimous vote.
I’ve examined the votability criteria in the past and I’m astonished that the Subcommittee found that M-408 failed to meet the standards.
This is the entirety of the motion’s text: “That the House condemn discrimination against females occurring through sex-selective pregnancy termination.”
As a result, the government has won the first in what will likely be a series of procedural battles that will be waged in pursuit of its ultimate goal: avoiding a reprise of the internal caucus divisions brought on by Stephen Woodworth’s bid to strike a committee on the legal definition of ‘human being,’ which did, of course, eventually go down to defeat — but not before garnering the public support of a majority of backbenchers, as well as several high profile ministers, including Jason Kenney and, most unexpectedly, Rona Ambrose.
In any case, Warawa has the right to appeal the decision of the subcommittee — which, I’m told, he will all but certainly do — by making the case for reconsideration before the full procedure and house affairs committee within five days of the subcommittee report being tabled thither.
If he fails to persuade the committee to overturn the ruling, Warawa can put the question to the House of Commons as a whole — provided, that is, that he has the support of at least five MPs — by filing a motion with the speaker, who will then proceed to call for a vote, which is conducted via secret ballot over the next two days.