UPDATE: They didn’t want it to come to this, but Elizabeth May and the Green Party of Canada are heading to the Federal Court of Appeal over their exclusion from the televised Leaders debate, according to the Vancouver Sun.
Despite tens of thousands of petition signatures in support of her right to debate and pleas from ex-Prime Ministers both Conservative and Liberal alike that she be included, the decision makers – still referred to in the media darkly as The Consortium of Broadcasters – has defended their position to exclude May based on ‘journalistic principles’ from deep within Castle Grayskull on Eternia, which I think is on Prince Edward Island somewhere.
The court dates are set for April 12 and 14, and an annoyed public holds their breath.
(UPDATE 13:24 Apr 5): The Winnipeg Free Press is reporting that Elizabeth May and the GPC have lost their Federal Court of Appeal case to have May included in the Leadership Debate. The Federal Judge opted not to push for the case to be expedited and heard before the debates take place next week.
The GPC is now debating whether they will be moving forward with their appeal, or if any other legal avenues exist for persuading The Consortium of Broadcasters to include her. But it does not look good at the moment. As their lawyer argued at the appeal hearing today, this is a complicated issue, and a comprehensive examination of the constitutionality of CRTC policy should not be rushed ahead in advance of the debate.
I have to agree. As undemocratic as I and countless others feel this decision is, I cannot help but feel May would be best to let this sleeping dog lie, and attempt a broader, larger challenge to the CRTC ruling once the election is over. May and the GPC should live to fight another day; having lost this battle, they would do well to remember that the war is not over.