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A collection of gas masks seized from G20 summit protesters are displayed during a news conference at Toronto police headquarters on June 29, 2010.

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

Yesterday's Globe featured a piece by Steven Chase describing Tory efforts to filibuster an attempt to convene hearings to review policing at the G20 summit. Among those MPs quoted was Peterborough Tory Dean del Mastro. Now you might expect that being a pro-life, anti-gay-marriage backbencher who sits on a lot of committees, Del Mastro would - how to put it - tack down wind on this one. Fair enough. Nobody gets ahead in a Harper caucus going even ever so slightly off message. Del Mastro, though, went above and beyond to the point where I'm thinking a rabies test might not be inappropriate.

"I don't agree with the NDP and the fact it seems to be lining itself up with anarchist groups that went to Toronto and caused damage. To recall this committee on an emergency basis is nothing more than a cheap political stunt."

Whoa buddy. Have you read Brian Topp lately? This is the new tough-on-crime, we-give-no-quarter-to-thugs NDP. No, in this instance NDP MP Paul Dewar is raising the possibility that at least some of the 1,000 and some odd arrests might have - how to say it - Charter implications. Anyway, point is for the Tories this is a race to the bottom and the NDP can't win without looking soft or hypocritical or both. Nothing new there. Still, you'd think the sheer lunacy of Del Mastro's rant might set off a couple of alarm bells in the PMO. It may be time to put a leash on that puppy. Or not.

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