House of Assembly Speaker Ross Wiseman said it was “unfortunate” that he said the legislature was adjourned amid the procedural confusion last Wednesday, but he said, “This slip was corrected immediately.”
Wiseman was delivering a ruling on a point of order raised by NDP Leader Lorraine Michael last week.
He ruled that the whole situation was a bit chaotic, but apart from that one little slip where he seemingly adjourned the legislature, no rules were broken.
Last week during a private member’s resolution debate on government funding for senior citizens, the motion was briefly defeated, because only two Tory MHAs bothered to say “yea” when it came to a vote. The two NDP MHAs who were in the House at the time voted against, and the motion was defeated.
In the ensuing confusion, Government House Leader Darin King called for a formal “division” standing vote. But then Wiseman said the House was adjourned, and the audio and video recording cut out for a few seconds, before resuming with the formal vote.
Wiseman said that he had to respect the call for a formal vote.
“It is incumbent upon the Speaker to follow the will of the House in this instance,” he said.
“The will of the House was to have a division, and to do otherwise would have placed the Speaker in a position that was clearly contrary to the will of the House.”