Tim Hudak bails on pledge to kill Human Rights Tribunals

Tim Hudak, the winner of the Ontario Progressive Conservative leadership race, is now backtracking on his pledge to get rid of Ontario's Human Rights Tribunals (HRT).

It's a decision that's pissed off a lot of conservative people, especially those who helped get him elected as leader based on his position on the HRTs.

Hudak made some very strong comments about how he would get rid of Ontario's Human Rights Tribunals in a post on his website:

Turncoat Tim Hudak flip-flops on his promise to scrap Ontario

http://www.timhudak.ca/index/2009/05/12/hudak-vows-to-scrap-human-rights-tribunal/

Don't bother trying to read his post though... in the wake of becoming party leader Hudak has sanitized his website of anything that might be used to hold him accountable.

It's disgusting, but what can you really expect from a politician.  Canada's Supreme Court has held they can't be held accountable for their promises, so what's to stop them from lying to us at every turn?

Absolutely nothing.

Here's a snippet of what Hudak said in the sanitized post:

For too long, individual rights have been trampled and ignored by an increasingly dysfunctional Human Rights bureaucracy. The McGuinty government’s system has advanced nuisance claims and denied justice and legitimate complaints, costing individuals and businesses thousands of dollars in unnecessary costs and clogging the system.

“Under Dalton McGuinty’s leadership, the Human Rights Commission and the Human Rights Tribunal have lost sight of their real job – to protect individuals in real cases of discrimination and harassment,” said Tim.

Tim proposes that the Tribunal be scrapped in favour of a court-based system operating under the rules of evidence. Complaints would go to specially trained judges, similar to the existing Domestic Violence and Family Law Courts. These judges would have a mandate to hear real cases of discrimination or harassment – not politically-motivated cases of hurt feelings.

As I said, now that he's leader of the party that's likely to form the next Ontario provincial government, suddenly his tune is changing.

Naturally, as any good political candidate will do when confronted with the facts, Hudak is refusing to comment publicly on his reversal of the promise that got him elected leader.

We’re going to fix the human rights system,” Hudak said Monday.

We’re going to reform it. So it will stay in place but we’re going to make it work better. People will have faith in a system that has gone badly off the rails.”

That's a far cry from his original statement, that he'd get rid of them entirely.

Since he's already breaking promises before he's even running in a provincial election, what on earth makes anyone believe he'll keep his word on anything else?

Apparently Tim Hudak is just another way of saying "Dalton McGuinty"...

In Lee Greenberg's awesome commentary on the subject, he writes:

Liberal minister Bob Chiarelli said Hudak's backtrack was a sign of poor leadership.

"This next election is about trust and leadership and Tim Hudak continues to demonstrate he just doesn't have it," he said in an interview. "He made a deal to appease the extreme right wing elements of the party . Now it turns out that was nothing but a bait-and-switch. He got what he needed out of it and now he switched to a different position."

What's even more disturbing than Hudak's about-face on this issue is the fact he's managed to convince Randy Hillier, the MPP for the riding of Lanark--Frontenac--Lennox and Addington, to make the same turnaround and is using Hillier to "sell" the about-face to the world.

Here's a quote from Hillier on the issue when he was running for the leadership of the party:

“I don’t believe you can reform something so broken and so corrupted in its process and its outcomes,” Mr. Hillier said yesterday during a meeting with the National Post editorial board. He argued issues currently addressed by commissions and tribunals should be handled by the traditional court system. “Real human rights are so important and inviolable that they should be protected by our courts by real justices, with due process of law.”

That quote is from the video below, where Hillier makes himself very clear about the fact that Ontario's Human Rights Tribunals are broken and cannot be fixed.

Now that Hillier has thrown his support behind Hudak and made Hudak "king" of the Ontario PCs, suddenly Hillier's tune has changed completely.

Ezra Levant had Hillier on his show The Source on Sun TV the other day to try and get to the bottom of the issue, and was almost as disgusted with Hillier's responses as I was.

After viewing the clip above and then watching the clip below, you wouldn't even know it's the same man speaking:

Randy Hillier seems to have become "a politician" instead of an advocate for freedom.  Toronto's representative to his constituents, instead of the other way around... you know... the way it's supposed to be.

When someone like Hillier suddenly abandons the principles that got him elected, you really have to wonder what the payoff for him is.  There's got to be one... and in time maybe we'll be lucky enough to find out what the price of Randy's principles was...

But it's a sad day for Freedom and Liberty when former supposedly staunch advocates are willing to toss their principles under the bus.

Brian Lilley also had a lot to say on the subject. I'll leave him with the last word on this case, and why the Human Rights Tribunals must go.

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