Monthly Archives: October 2011

The Harper Government’s Senate Reform Bill (C-7) and Its Implications on Crown Prerogative and Responsible Government


Introduction Since the 39th Parliament, the Harper government has tried and failed to pass bills that would limit the tenure of Senators to somewhere between 8 and 12 years and provide a legislative framework for provincial senatorial elections along the … Continue reading

Posted in Crown (Powers and Office), Prime Minister's Powers, Responsible Government, Senate Reform | Tagged , , , , , , | 12 Comments

The First Edition of the British Cabinet Manual Is Now Available


After waiting in eager anticipation for months (as only an aspiring constitutional scholar could), I jumped for joy earlier this week when the British Cabinet Office finally released the first edition of The Cabinet Manual: A Guide to Laws, Conventions … Continue reading

Posted in Constitution (Written), Officialization of Convention | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A True Parliamentarist: The Speaker of the New Zealand House of Representatives Dr Lockwood Smith


In “The Role of the Speaker”, The Speaker of the House of Representatives Lockwood Smith talked about the history of parliament as an institution and the core function, or main authority, of the House of Representatives: to hold the Crown … Continue reading

Posted in Parliament, Parliamentary Privilege, Reaffirmation of, Traditions and History | Tagged , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Parliamentary Oaths of Allegiance in the Westminster System


In Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, the MP must take the oath of allegiance in order to take his or her seat in the House and gain the emoluments of the office. I will list the oaths and briefly enumerate … Continue reading

Posted in Crown (Powers and Office), loyal opposition, Oaths of Allegiance, Parliamentary Privilege | 15 Comments

The Manual of Official Procedure of the Government of Canada


Three consecutive minority parliaments from 2004 to 2011 renewed interest in the creation of a cabinet manual describing the unwritten rules, or constitutional conventions, that underpin Westminster parliamentarism. The United Kingdom just established its Draft Cabinet Manual in 2010, with … Continue reading

Posted in Officialization of Convention | 14 Comments