Harper’s new enemy: conservatives

Publication Source: Ottawa Citizen
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Author: Susan Riley

There is a new front opening, as opposition to Stephen Harper’s budget — and his broader agenda — gathers strength. Increasingly, criticism is coming from dismayed conservatives offended by Harper’s hostility, or indifference, to the environment. And to democratic tradition.

The dissidents are mostly Progressive Conservatives, but not exclusively. This week, for instance, former Alberta Reform MP Bob Mills joined Green Party Leader Elizabeth May in decrying the elimination of the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy (a Mulroney-era initiative.)

Mills, a one-time biology teacher, served as environment critic in Harper’s Opposition shadow cabinet. While he stoutly defended market-friendly prescriptions, Mills won friends across party lines. But Mills proved too green for the PMO and was never appointed environment minister — although he was a member of the now-doomed NREE, after he left politics in 2008.

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