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SOSC 1200. Lecture # 4 - Governance. Oct 22, 2012.docx

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Social Science
SOSC 1200
Terry Conlin

Monday, October 22, 2012 Lecture # 4 – Governance SOSC 1200 – Canadian Problems Terry Conlin Governance: Parliamentary (Cabinet) Government: 1.) The Westminster Model, Responsible Government & Parliamentary Sovereignty: 1. The Constitution Act of 1982 2. Westminster model: A model of government that puts emphasis on executive leadership (cabinet). 3. The legislative branch does not legislate in regards to making laws, nor does it govern. It supports the present government. 4. It is the job of the House of Commons to hold these people accountable. 5. Responsible Government (Three conventions): a. The political executive holds power at the pleasure of the legislative branch it must maintain the confidence of them. b. We have a doctrine of collective ministerial responsibilities (cabinet sovereignty). The prime minister and the cabinet are responsible for what the government does and must agree. c. The doctrine of individual ministerial responsibility. 6. Page 107, 5 conventions of a responsible. 7. Parliamentary Sovereignty (Parliamentary supremacy): Parliament is accountable for itself, not the people. There is no higher law in all of the land. Parliament has a fundamental right to make any law what so ever. o Federalism o The Constitution act of 1982 o International trade agreements o Any number of reform proposals that have been suggested to our political system. 2.) Legislative Branch I: House of Commons: a. Structure and Functions i. The lower house, the elected house. Based on population. ii. Divided by an aisle. On one side the government (on the right), the other side the opposition (on the left). Are directly facing each other. iii. The governmental side seeks approval for there initiatives. The opposition criticizes the government. iv. The Prime Minister sits in the first row followed by the government back benchers. v. The leader of the “shadow cabinet” and the shadow cabinet backbenchers sit opposite. vi. The speaker is a non-partisan referee, maintains stability. Only votes in the case of the tie. You must be recognized by the speaker in order to speak. Has the power to name and remove. Three roles/functions: I. Legitimation: To make democracy “real”. II. Representation: To stand for the people. III. Surveillance: To oversee what the government is doing. b. Legislation and Committees Types of bills: i. Private members bill: Proposed by private members of legislation, does not have the backing of the crown. Almost never becomes law. ii. Government Bill: Involves those that spend public money, and those that do not. If it does spend public money, it can only be introduced in the house of commons. iii. Private bills: Eight steps for how bills become law: 1. First reading: The bill is introduced. It cannot be rejected at this point. It can still be amended. 2. Second Reading: Involves initial debate on the proposed legislation. The bill cannot be amended. The vote is in regards to it’s approval. 3. Committee Stage: Bill is scrutinized and debated. Experts are called to give their opinion. 4. Report Stage: Committee report is given back to the house of commons. The House of Commons can either reject or accept the recommendations. Bill can be amended on these recommendations. 5. Third Reading: Bill is voted on again, it is then (if it is passed) sent to the Senate for reading (or house of commons conversely). 6. Royal Assent: 7. Dd 8. Proclomation: The Committee System: 1. “Committee of the Whole”: 2. Standing Committees:
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