From CBC today:
Questions swirled over who would lead a Liberal-NDP coalition following reports that a tentative agreement to replace the minority Conservative government had been reached between the two parties. [...]
The Canadian Press reported a source saying mid-Monday that the parties have agreed to present a $30-billion stimulus package that would offer substantial aid to the troubled auto and forestry industries.
The source said the deal also calls for the formation of an economic advisory panel of experts that would include Paul Martin, John Manley, Frank McKenna and Roy Romanow.
Under the proposed deal, the NDP would hold 25 per cent of cabinet positions, while the positions of finance minister, treasury board president and deputy prime minister would be held by Liberals.
Canadian parties have little experience with coalitions, but they evidently are respecting Gamson’s Law. That percentage of portfolios for the smaller coalition partner would be fairly close to the NDP’s share of the coalition’s seats. The NDP has 22.7% of the total seats held by the non-Conservative parties (32.7% when the Bloc Quebecois, which would have no cabinet seats but would agree to provide external support, is left out of the denominator).
The news item indicates that the deal would stipulate a 30-month term for the government.
As for who would be PM:
“It will be headed by the leader of the Liberal Party of Canada because that is obviously the party that is the biggest player,” [MP Ralph] Goodale told the Canadian Press on Monday.
That would be Stéphane Dion, notwithstanding that he anounced shortly after his party’s poor performance in the election that he would stand down as party leader once the party chose a successor. The leadership selection is planned for May, 2009.
For more detail, see the linked news item. In addition, I recommend Ross Trusler’s detailed comment at the still-growing previous planting.
The no-confidence motion against the current government of Stephen Harper is expected a week from today. This will be fun to watch!