With its solicitor general having stepped down and its insurance corporation under scrutiny by the media, the Campbell administration can expect a raucous question period this week. As has often been said, though, it's question period not answer period. So don't expect the Liberals to be forthcoming about either story. But the New Democrats need to take at least some of the blame for this state of affairs. After all, even though question period might not be answer period, the New Democrats sometimes don't seem to use that period to ask many questions. Instead, they make statements disguised as questions.
I can't count the number of times when I've heard an opposition critic demand a minister admit they're wrong, incompetent or reverse a decision. What do opposition MLAs expect the response will be? Do they expect the minister to stand up and say, "You're right! You got me! The passion of your question has forced me to confess my mistakes."
In fairness, the New Democrats occasionally do a bit better in estimates debate, when they have an opportunity to spend hours asking about an individual ministry's budget.
But if the opposition really wants to hold the government to account, it's members need to stop making blunt statements for the cameras and ask some pointed questions on behalf of British Columbians.