doug ford standing ovation

Ontario government reprimanded for giving standing ovations to everything

If there's one thing we know for certain about Ontario Premier Doug Ford's 76-member Progressive Conservative caucus, as a group, it's that they love to clap—mostly for Ford, but also for themselves, and sometimes to drown out pesky journalists.

The PC MPPs are such a clappy bunch, in fact, that it's become a "thing" to count how many times they'll stand up to applaud during any given session at Queen's Park.

On Monday, the group managed to get in a total of 22 standing ovations in just 45 minutes.

On Tuesday, it was 21, including the ovation Finance Minister Vic Fedeli got from his PC colleagues after calling NDP deputy leader Sara Singh an "idiot."

The behaviour, supportive as it may seem among members of the party, isn't appreciated by all.

Speaker of the House Ted Arnott said at the beginning of Question Period on Wednesday that he'd had received complaints about the "number and duration" of standing ovations in the Legislature since Ford came into power.

The party's uproarious eruptions are simply interruptions, the way he sees it, as it becomes difficult to hear or see MPPs while they're speaking.

"We are all accountable for our behaviour in this House," said Arnott, who does not have the power to ban standing ovations, on Wednesday.

"I would therefore respectfully ask members to keep their ovations to a minimum to enhance the decorum."

PC MPPs gave their leader a standing ovation anyway, roughly two minutes later anyway.

"Should I reread my statement?" said Arnott at the time, reminding caucus that Question Period is publicly televised.

Ontario Minister of Economic Development and House leader Todd Smith brushed off Arnott's plea following Question Period.

"We're an enthusiastic team," he said to reporters on Wednesday. "The decorum you're seeing from the government side is one of excitement about the agenda we're rolling out."

Lead photo by

Ontario Legislature


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