October 17 2012. TUTORIAL
What is the system now?
What are some of its problems?
What reforms would you want to see?
House of Common problems – power struggle, over representation of some
provinces, bias in government ethnicity, minority government focus on Quebec
Province, Ps don’t get to represent constitution
Senate problems – business community, appointed not elected, not regionally
representative, only until age 75,
LECTURE 6 – October 18 2012-10-18
Canadian Politics: Part 6: Parliament
November 6 – US election
The Legislature branch of government – the legislature is the will of government
Sec. 17 – Canadian parliament is the Quebec, the senate, H of C. There’s two
bicameral legislature – a legislature branch that is divided into two house
or two chambers (US, Germany, and Australia has this too)
executive is a part of parliament (Queen)
In Canada the first house which is the upper house is the senate – seats of the
senate are allocated in regional representation and appointed by PM.
There has to be condition to become a senator:
senators has to be Canadian
30 years old
resident of the province
have to own 40000 dollars
Has to have a net worth (debts and liabilities) of 4 thousand dollars.
Canada comprised of 4 regions – Maritime region, Quebec, Ontario, and West.
They gave equal seats to each.
There are 24 seats in each region.
When NFL joined they were given 6 more seats. 30 seats in Atlantic Canada and
only 24 in the other parts of the region.
We appoint 1 senate in the Territories.
PEI has 4 senators. There is no way that senate correspond on where the people
live, economic, and political cloud. Distribution of seats didn’t change but the
country change. It pretty hard to revitalize the senate.
105 senators should be no more than 113 senators. PM can appoint 4 or 8
additional senator for anywhere he wants. Mulroney used this in order to get his
GST bill passed. Once appointed used to serve for life now they serve until 75. Why do we have senate? To protect the interest of the rich. The Majority are poor
and can gang up to the rich and distribute the money from the rich to the poor.
They give the rich senate a voice in politics.
The Senate represent regions not states. The only province that is a region is
Ontario and Quebec.
The Senate serves to be a chamber of second thought. These people are elders
with tons of experience.
It’s very rare that a senate oppose to the House of Commons but they can do this
in law. Since they’re not elected, they rarely oppose. People would say it wouldn’t
be very democratic if the Senate does oppose.
Ex. Mulroney abortion bill was defeated by the Senate. You can have an
abortion right now, we don’t have a law. In 1998, Supreme Court said it
was unconstitutional and not all women could get an abortion in the entire
province so it’s not equal. Every woman in the House of Common was
against the bill.
Ex. GST bill – Senate defeated that until Mulroney elected 8 more
House of Commons Slide picture – the pillar in the middle
House of Commons are elected. They are allocated across the country of
representation by population.
A long time ago, Atlantic and Quebec’s population wasn’t growing. The senate
was a compromise so we have representation by population and representation
Representation act of 1974 – Quebec had 75 seats in the House of Commons.
No seats are ever taken away. No province has less MP than they have in the
senate. There hast to be more MPs than senate.
House of Commons: Each seat has a separate election. The candidate that wins
wins the seat (plurality – more than anybody else).