Thursday, November 24, 2011

Parliamentary reform proposals worth considering

Over at, one of the best Canadian political blogs, they make some worthy parliamentary reform proposals for all of us to consider.  To do that, however, the blog rightfully admits that the prime stumbling-block is the grandfather clause that provinces must have at least as many MPs as it has senators (e.g. PEI with 4).

I like the fact that the main senate proposal is for each province to have an equal number of senators--10 each with 4 appointed federally and 6 appointed by the province at each provincial election.  I think 100 is too many though--Canada is not that populated it needs over-representation.  Also, while it floors me that many people still need convincing that provincial equality is crucial to the unity of the country, the blog does not make a strong case as to why this is necessary.  What is also important though, in the majority of Canadians' opinion, that these senators should be elected by the people, not by politicians themselves.

I have advocated 66 senators: six for each province, two for each territory, where half the senators are elected every six years in conjunction with civic elections, which are held every three years.  Each province would be divided into six senatorial regions, not necessarily based on population density, but on economics and geography.

For example, Alberta's senatorial regions would be divided as follows:
1. Peace Country (Northwest) -- High River, Peace River, Grand Prairie, Slave Lake, High Prairie, Whitecourt
2. Wood Buffalo (Northeast) -- Lac La Biche, Cold Lake, Ft. McMurray, Athabasca
3. Capital Region -- Edmonton, St. Albert, Sherwood Park, Leduc, Spruce Grove, Stony Plain, Mornville
4. Mountain -- Grande Cache, Hinton, Edson, Jasper, Lake Louise, Banff, Canmore, Nordegg
5. Central -- Red Deer, Camrose, Rocky Mountain House, Stettler, Oyen, Drumheller
6. South -- Calgary, Airdrie, Brooks, Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, Fort MacLeod, Waterton

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