Less like the US Tea Party or Religious Right, and more like this guy.
Canada’s federal Conservative government isn’t like American small-c social conservatives — for example, it seems to have no issues with teaching evolution in Canadian schools, it muzzles any of its backbenchers who oppose marriage equality or women’s reproductive rights, and it speaks out in support of gay and lesbian rights at every international gathering (less so for transgendered). On the other hand, it is ruthlessly slashing environmental scientific research and regulations, it supports Israel so boisterously against the Palestinians that even the Israeli government seems a bit embarrassed, and it has a strange obsession (dare we say, “fetish”?) concerning the Monarchy.
In fact, I believe that Prime Minister Harper’s decision-making process is fairly predictable, as illustrated in the following flowchart:
Try it out for yourself — take any major policy decision or position of PM Harper’s government over the past few years, and see if it fits the chart.
(Note: for the benefit of non-Canadian readers, John Baird is a Canadian cabinet minister.)