A bar of soap may be in the future for Prime Minister John Horgan after he used inappropriate language in the BC legislature on Monday.
Following a question from BC Liberal MLA Trevor Halford about the GP shortage, Horgan was ruthlessly heckled by the opposition.
“They don’t want an answer, honorable speaker, because they are part of the problem. That’s why,” Horgan replied, trying to speak above the shouting.
“Do you want to hear it? Do you want to hear it, or do you just want to hear your voice? Why don’t you go to the bathroom and talk to yourself in there? You don’t want to hear answers in this place. Seriously.”
He went back to talking about federal health transfer payments, but the taunts interrupted him again.
He then asked his political opponents: “Do you want a headline or do you want action?”
When the teasing continued, he put his hands up, said “Aw fuck” and sat down. The comment ended the question period.
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President Raj Chouhan expressed his frustration with both sides of the legislature.
“I am so disappointed in all of you. During the question period, I have repeatedly said: ‘Please listen to the question and listen to the answer.’ Once that’s over, don’t make it personal. Let’s behave like adults, please.”
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The prime minister took to social media shortly after the exchange, tweeting: “If my mum were still around she’d be on her way to the Legislature with an Irish spring bar.”
Three hours later, he removed the comment from the registry.
“My passion for health care got the best of me and I made some unconscionable comments that may well offend members of this chamber and others. I apologize for that and withdraw my comments without reservation,” she said in a statement.
Interruptions are commonplace during question period, and tension between the BC Liberals and the BC NDP has increased in recent months.
The boos were loudest during Horgan’s responses due to his perceived frustration with official opposition around access to health care.
Outpatient clinic wait times are higher in BC than any other jurisdiction in the country
Some 900,000 people in British Columbia do not have a family doctor.
Data was also released last week showing that patients at walk-in clinics in BC wait almost an hour on average to see a doctor, the longest wait in the country.
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