This is Mayor Jim Watson at his political best.
Smarting from having signed a pro-life proclamation and raising a pro-life flag at Ottawa City Hall, Watson is trying to restore his credibility as a pro-choice politician.
So Watson has called on his political ally Attorney General Yasir Naqvi to enact legislation to protect abortion clinics from pro-choice protesters.
One wonders if legislation isn’t already on the books to prevent this sort of harassment but then Watson would be taking responsibility for protecting abortion clinics through the Ottawa Police Service and not doing anything extra to solve problems there.
So this is a controversial topic from which he must distance himself. The adept political solution is to call on someone else to protect the clinics. That way if something goes wrong, he can say well I called on the province to do something and they didn’t. It’s not my fault and I wish the province had acted in a more decisive way.
In his own inimitable way, Watson has made the issue someone else’s problem, made himself look like he is championing pro-choice and taking decisive action to solve the problem.
If anything goes wrong, it’s not his fault. Naqvi carries the can.
All is fair in love and war and politics.
Watson has the municipal power to solve this problem but that would mean taking responsibility in one of the most divisive issues in our time. Watson’s fight or flight mechanism takes hold. Fly. Why not give the problem to Naqvi?
The AG is an eager young man and likely to fall for this gambit.
And in the end Watson will look less like the dunce that he was for signing a pro-life proclamation and raising a pro-life flag at city hall.
If life serves you lemons (and this was a mighty big lemon), make lemonade. Lemonade indeed but a bit too bitter.
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