Things took an unusual turn when Conservative MP Scott Reid stood up around dinner time and accused Trudeau of hiding and eating a bagel – in violation of the Rules of Decorum of the House — in an apparent attempt to stall the proceedings.
“Mr. Speaker, we all know the rules of the House do not permit us to eat in this place. I couldn’t help but notice during the last vote a number of people were eating in their seats, including the minister of defence, Canadian heritage and the prime minister, who appeared to be hiding a bagel in his desk,” he said.
“Mr. Speaker, the prime minister has already stained this place with corruption, he does not need to stain it with mustard as well.”
In response, Trudeau apologized and clarified what he was eating.
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“Indeed Mr. Speaker, I apologize, it was a chocolate bar, but I apologize.”
The Speaker of the House reminded MPs that eating was not allowed.
The rules state: “In the Chamber, Members may refresh themselves with glasses of water during debate, but the consumption of any other beverage or food is not allowed.”
Many on Twitter took the opportunity to make light of the situation, including Montreal-based MP Anthony Housefather who said he was disappointed the prime minister wasn’t actually eating a bagel.
Jody Wilson-Raybould, along with colleague MP Jane Philpott, was not in attendance during the votes. Both MPs resigned from their cabinet positions, citing a loss of confidence. Both remain Liberals.
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The filibuster comes after the House Justice Committee heard hours of testimony from staffers of the Prime Minister’s Office, as well as former-Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, telling their version of whether or not the PMO put pressure on the attorney general to handle the prosecution of Montreal-based SNC-Lavalin a certain way.
Each of the filibuster session’s 257 motions opposed different lines of those bills that needed to be voted on before the estimates themselves can actually face a vote.
And because all money bills that come before Parliament are considered confidence bills, the government needed to win every single opposing motion or face defeat – meaning most of the Liberal majority needed to be in-house to defeat the motions.
Conservatives needed to keep the session going until 10 a.m. Thursday to cancel that day’s parliamentary sessions.
*with files from Amanda Connolly