OTTAWA -- Conservative backbenchers are rekindling their fight to abolish the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
Four Tories presented petitions in the House of Commons Monday calling for the state broadcaster to be defunded or sold to private industry.
"Government of Canada funds the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to the sum of $1.1 billion per annum, that the vast amount of Government of Canada funding gives the CBC an unfair advantage over its private sector competitor," Brian Jean, a Conservative MP from Alberta, said as he read aloud from the petition signed by his constituents. "(We) call upon Parliament to end public funding of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation."
Last year, the Liberals launched a petition to maintain or increase funding for the CBC, exempting it from the 5%-10% reduction being sought in all other government departments.
Petitions must contain the signatures of at least 25 individuals, complete with Canadian home addresses. Members of Parliament can present petitions whether or not they agree with the goals.
The documents are largely for public pulse-taking, as governments are not compelled to act on the demands.