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Legislative Branch

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clay key

on 26 September 2012

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Transcript of Legislative Branch

The Structure of the Legislative Branch Governor General Senate House of Commons Governor General David Lloyd Johnston Parliament Hill Who is the Governor General? - The Governor General in Canada is the federal representative of the Canadian Monarch, Queen Elizabeth II.

- The Queen appoints a Governor General to carry out most of her constitutional and ceremonial duties in Canada. Senate House of Commons Senate - The Senate provides second thoughts to the bills that is approved by the House of Commons

- If the Senate finds that the bill needs amendments, they would send the bill back to the House

- The Senate can also propose bills, however with the exception of money bills (bills that concern government spending or taxation)

- Bills that are proposed aren't any different from other bills and must also go through the process of legislation The Senate Examine National Canadian Issues:

- Senators also contribute to in-depth studies by Senate committees on public (Canadian health care, illegal drugs, the regulation of the Canadian airline industry and urban Aboriginal youth). The reports from these investigations can lead to changes in federal public policy and legislation The Senate Represents Regional, Provincial, and Minority Interests References The House of Commons http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whip_(politics)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senate_of_Canada http://sen.parl.gc.ca/portal/publications/factsheets/fs-keyroles-e.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senate_of_Canada http://sen.parl.gc.ca/portal/publications/factsheets/fs-keyroles-e.htm
http://www.parl.gc.ca/LegisInfo/Faq.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1#ID0EL - Senators also contribute to study and examine public issues (Canadian health care, illegal drugs, the regulation of the Canadian airline industry and urban Aboriginal youth)

- The reports from these investigations can lead to changes in federal public policy and legislation Majority Government and Minority Government - He was born on June 28, 1941 (age 71) at Greater Sudbury in Ontario, Canada.

- On October 1, 2010, he was made the 28th governor general since Canadian Confederation. Power and Duties in Concern to the Canadian Government - Formally appoints the Cabinet and Senate on advice from the Prime Minister

- Has the authority to dissolve government on advice from the Prime Minister

- Summons and dismisses Parliament

- Gives royal assent to bills that pass the House of Commons and the Senate

- Ensures that there is always government

- Appoints justices to federal, superior, provincial and territorial courts - Conducts state visits at home and abroad

- Hosts royalty and foreign dignitaries

- Signs diplomatic documents

- Presents national honors, decorations and awards

- Meets with Canadians across the country

- Delivers the throne speech The Governor General Examines National Canadian Issues The Senate's Role in Legislation - Senators also represent the rights of groups and individuals who may otherwise be overlooked - such as the youth, poor, seniors and veterans

- The Senate also serves the purpose of having a regional voice so that provinces and territories with smaller populations have equal say Election - There are several restrictions in concern to the Election in which people who meet these conditions cannot run for candidate
• Anyone with a criminal record cannot run for candidate
• Minors and non-Canadian citizens cannot run for candidate
• People that already have posts in provincial and territorial legislature (in most cases), sheriffs, crown attorneys, election officers and most judges cannot run for candidate
• Any running candidate that commits a crime related to the election is restricted from becoming a member for five (sometimes seven) years after conviction
• The Chief Electoral Officer and the Assistant Chief Electoral Officer cannot run for candidate or vote
• Senators cannot run for a seat in the House of Commons Speaker's Role - The Speaker manages the House of Commons, supervises the staff and allows a line of communication with the Senate and the Crown

- When MPs fail to follow the rules of the House, the Speaker is responsible for disciplining them

- During debates, the Speaker permits MPs to speak and ensures that all MPs have a chance to speak

- When a point of order (a motion that calls a violation of parliamentary procedures) is raised, the Speaker must make a ruling not subject to any debate

- The Speaker can’t vote on most bills except issues that are at a tie

- The Deputy Speaker (Chair of Committees) can substitute for the Speaker when they are absent

- The Deputy Speaker is the head when the House sits as the Committee of the Whole

- When the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker is absent the Deputy Chair of Committees and the Assistant Chair of Committees fill in

- The Speaker, the Deputy Speaker, the Deputy Chair of Committees, and the Assistant Chair of Committees are members of the panel chair – they can chair legislative committees when selected by the Speaker The Senate Examines National Canadian Issues Governor General The Senate Keeps an Eye on the Government - The Senate is part of the process of how laws are made - they thoroughly study the bill for amendments or rejection

- During the Senate Question Period, Senators ask the Prime Minister many routine questions on federal government policies

- The Senate makes sure that important topics of concern are known to the Cabinet Ministers and the Prime Minister

- It is a part of the Senate’s duties to keep the power of the House of Commons in check. Appointing Senators - Governor general appoints the Senators under advice from Prime Minister

- Because the term of years in office for a Senator is till the age of 75, it isn’t often when there are vacant seats available

- when the Prime Minister selects a Senator to fill in a vacant seat, they would most likely select a member of their own party

- Senators usually remain in office longer than the Prime Minister that put them in that position

- There are 105 seats of the Senate – they are selected by the Prime Minister on a regional basis (24 members from the 4 major regions in Canada – Ontario, Quebec, Western Provinces and the Maritimes)

- Selecting Senators does not run on the method of representation by population (as it is applied in the House of Commons) Dismissing Senators A Senator can lose their position if:
•they miss 2 consecutive parliamentary sessions
•commit crimes The House of Common's Role In Legislation - The House of Commons is the major law-making body in Canada’s federal system

- Money bills can also be proposed by the House

- Bills in the House of Commons are studied, and are voted and debated on

- The house administers the 1st few readings in the legislative process – they review the bill and vote on its contents and sends it to the Senate for the next reading Committees - During the legislation process Committees study the bill in detail and provide further discussion and make amendments to the matter

- The largest committee is the Committee of the Whole which discusses appropriation bills and other legislation

- Standing Committees (committees of the House of Commons) are responsible for the different areas of government (finance, transport, etc.)

- Standing Committees monitor the government departments and learns about the governmental operations and review departmental spending plans.

- Legislative Committees reflects the power of the parties in the House of Commons
-Special Committees are also created to examine matters apart from bills Dissolution of Parliament - Parliament can be dissolved by the Governor General on advice from the Prime Minister

- Parliament has to be dissolved before the 5 year term (often times government doesn’t remain for the maximum of the 5-year term)

- In cases where the majority of the House of Commons support a vote of confidence or if the government fails to accumulate a money bill, the Prime Minister will have to resign
- Candidates for the election attend meetings called by their party’s local association and the candidate that signs up the local party member win the nomination

- To run for seat in the House of Commons, the candidate must hand in over 50-100 signatures (depending on the number of people living in the electoral district) – the candidate that wins the majority of votes in their riding gains the seat

- Elected MPs remain in position will the next dissolution of government

- In cases where the MP passes away or commits a crime, the seat will become vacant and a by-election is held in the previous MP’s electoral district

- The Members of Parliament discuss national issues and represent constituents of their riding. - The governing party that has the most seats in Parliament – if the number of seats that party has, outnumbers the seats of the opposing parties, that winning party forms a majority government

- A majority government would be able to pass any bill because it has more than 50% of the seats to support it

- When the governing party has a number of seats that can be outnumbered by the seats of the opposing parties, the winning party forms a minority government

- A minority government would have to negotiate and gain the support of the opposing parties to pass bills with over 50% of the seats supporting – this kind of government would bring more consensus to Parliament Leader of the Government in the House of Commons (Government Leader) - Is appointed by the Prime Minister

- In charge of holding the cabinet rank

- They are the Cabinet Minister that arranges the schedule of the House of Commons try to maintain opposition’s support for the government legislative agenda Clerk of the House of Commons - The Clerk of the House of Commons acts as an advisor of the Speaker and the MPs, reminding them of parliamentary procedure

- The Clerk of the House of Commons, the Deputy Clerk, the Law Clerk, and Parliamentary Counsel and other clerks are part of managing the House of Commons Sergeant-at-Arms - The Sergeant-at-Arms is in charge of the security and order on the premises of the House of Commons

- The ceremonial mace (symbol of the Crown and the House of Commons) is also carried to each House sitting by the Sergeant-at-Arms Procedure at Commons Chamber - Speeches at the House may switch between Canada’s official languages – it is customary for the bilingual MPs to respond in the same language that the question or comment was spoke in

- In the Commons Chamber, there is a quorum of 20 members – MPs may request a count of the members for confirmation (if the Speaker feels that there is no need for the count because they are certain of the presence of 20 members they can decline) and if the Speaker obliges and reveal missing members the Speaker will ring a bell to summon the absent members to the Chamber – if they still don’t come, the second bell will ring, adjourning the House until next sitting day

- MPs cannot speak more than once on the same question (except if a speech that is entitled to make a remark at the beginning and once more at the end) The End! Thanks for watching! ^3 ^ By: Claire, Philippe, Dianne, and Elisa A bill restricting the wear of masks during a violent riot is close to passing the House of Commons. If the bill receives royal consent, it will be illegal in Canada to hide your identity at unlawful demonstration. The maximum sentence for rioting is 2 years. However the bill states that if rioters hide their faces with masks, they will receive a 10 years sentence. - Repetitive/irrelevant remarks are prohibited – MPs that do proceed in such remarks are ordered to stop speaking

- Most speeches are time limited (ten-twenty minutes)

- Conclusion of a debate follows with voting on the motion at hand – either vote Yes or No

- Clerks record the standing of each MP – and if there is a tie, the Speaker will cast his/her vote in the matter

- Normally the political parties would instruct the members what to cast as their vote – may involve threats, or offer benefits to the members to maintain party discipline (whips) CURRENT EVENT #1 Mask Ban Bill Nears Final Stage in House of Commons http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/story/2012/09/18/pol-mask-ban-bill-up-for-debate.html Prime Minister Stephan Harper appoints the following as Senators: Diane Bellemare from Quebec. Tobias C. Enverga Jr. from Ontario, Thanh Hai Ngo from Ontario, Thomas Johnson McInnis from Nova Scotia, and Paul E. McIntyre from New Brunswick. The 5 Senators are members of the Conservative Party. CURRENT EVENT #2 Harper fills 5 Senate vacancies http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2012/09/07/pol-senate-appointments.html
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