Maxime Bernier scored mock applause after question period Wednesday when he rose to discuss — what else? — supply management.
And in so doing, the People's Party leader offered a glimpse at a new kind of political odd couple to watch in the House of Commons this fall.
Bernier, a former Conservative cabinet minister and leadership hopeful who quit the party last month, has moved from the glow of the opposition front bench to a lonely corner of the House.
His new seatmate is Green Party Leader Elizabeth May, who always finds ways to make her presence felt from the nosebleeds.
The pair probably won't agree on much.
He's a flashy libertarian who courts controversy. She loves policy and decorum.
And they disagree on all manner of issues, including his push to dismantle Canada's supply management system for dairy and poultry to secure a revamped North American Free Trade Agreement.
May says it all with a shrug
So it's no surprise that May shook her head and facepalmed when Bernier rose to seek unanimous consent for a motion calling on the government to put the "complete abolition" of the system on the NAFTA negotiating table.
"Yes?" Bernier asked MPs, likely already knowing the answer. Liberals, Tories, New Democrats, and the Bloc Quebecois all support the system.
"Nooooooo," May shouted beside him.
When Bernier turned to look at her, she offered only a shrug.