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November 28th – Government of Canada
Victoria Charter 1971 – Trudeau – wants a pan-Canadian attitude.
1969: Trudeau is PM, gets a sense of how he will do constitutional reform
No extra powers for provinces, charter of rights, pan-Canadian attitude
Reshaping federal institutions: equality for both languages, reform
institutions: senate/court/strengthening the federal government
Agreement: some provision for a Charter of Rights,
Bill of Rights – cornerstone with language rights
Role for provinces SC Appointments
QC denied greater power – gets very little in regard to changes in powers.
Becoming a modern state, wants more powers – terms of family, youth –
Any province with 25% of the population got a veto on any constitutional
Spending Power – explicitly recognized in charter
November 1976 – election of a PQ government committed to a referendum
“North American European Union” – Quebec & the rest of Canada
o Trudeau government responds – “time for action”, reform: Senate,
federal government, charter, no switch in federal powers
o Decentralization from Canada to Quebec
o Supreme Court rules federal government can’t unilaterally change the
character of the Senate
o 1980 – Referendum with Rene Levesque. Trudeau loses 1979, Joe
Clark. 60% no, 40% yes..
o February/March: Clark introduces budget, loses the vote in the House
– has to resign.
o Everyone of trudeau’s constitutional proposals was to reform the
Originally was told the Constitution needed changes – not strong enough
o What starts in 1980-1981 in the const negotiations – we as citizens
take ownership of the constitution – most significant changes in the
constitutional culture of Canada
Trudeau/his people brilliant marketers
o No constitution prohibition about the federal government unilaterally
going to London
Constitutional convention – need provincial consent to do so
Gang of Eight – only two provinces on his side were
Night of the Long Knives: meeting of 9 provinces,
negotiations without Quebec – have to accept all this:
notwithstanding clause, provincial formula 7 provinces
representing 50% of the population,