Canada’s friendly neighbor to the South, the US, has an electoral system that is composed of 3 separate elections, one of them deciding the head of state. The president elected by the people and he or she is the determining person of the country’s political system. In the US runs like a majority system” In Canada, however, elections are held slightly differently. Citizens vote for a Member of Parliament in a 308-seat house and candidates win not by a majority, unlike in the US, but by a plurality. This means that a candidate can actually win by simply having more votes than the other candidates. This method of representative democracy, in general, does not cause too much controversy in a global scope but has
Although Canadian electoral system has always undergone periodic reforms, new challenges always accompany electoral changes and therefore the system should be consistently reformed to meet new circumstances.The current electoral system in Canada is a product of a series of electoral changes that have always taken place since the foundation of the Canadian confederation in the mid 1880s. During the early years, the rights of individuals to vote were significantly limited as only white males had the right to vote but only after meeting certain requirements. A secret ballot was unheard, and it was only after a number of changes were implemented that all social groups in Canada were given the right to vote. Even after these changes, electoral
The issue of electoral reform has become more important than ever in Canada in recent years as the general public has come to realize that our current first-past-the-post, winner-take-all system, formally known as single-member plurality (SMP) has produced majority governments of questionable legitimacy. Of the major democracies in the world, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom are the only countries that still have SMP systems in place. Interestingly enough, there has been enormous political tension and division in the last few years in these countries, culminating with the election results in Canada and the USA this year that polarized both countries. In the last year we have seen
There is a fundamental problem with the democratic process in Canada. This problem is rooted within our electoral system. However, there is a promising solution to this issue. Canada should adopt the mixed-member proportional representation electoral system (MMP) at the federal level if we wish to see the progression of modern democracy. The failure to do so will result in a stagnant political system that is caught in the past and unable to rise to the contemporary challenges that representative democracies face. If Canada chooses to embrace the MMP electoral system it will reap the benefits of greater proportionality, prevent the centralization of power that is occurring in Parliament and among political parties through an increased
Canada’s government is a democracy like the United States, however their style of government is different. The Canadian government is based on a parliamentary democracy while the United States is based on a federal presidential constitutional republic. The parliament of Canada establishes laws and rights to citizens. In the United States Congress passes laws and legislation. In this section, I will discuss political system, business regulations, free trade agreements, and social conflicts
Today, Ontario and Quebec have maintained their 24 member senatorial status. The four Western provinces have 6 members each. Nova Scotia and New Brunswick both have 10 seats. Prince Edward Island was given 4 out of the original 24 Maritime senators. Together, Newfoundland and Labrador have a total of 6 members. Finally, Nunavut, the Yukon and the Northwest Territories stand in the equation with 1 senator apiece. Along with the Senate`s original intentions, the principle of equality between the provinces is evidently lost. The Senate primarily fails because it was formerly created to balance out the representation by population which lies in the House of Commons however currently only seems to reinforce it. In fact, Canada’s central provinces, Ontario and Quebec, account for 60 percent of the seats in the House of Commons and almost half of the seats in the Senate at 46 percent.5 The inadequacy of regional representation is emphasized as the Canada West Foundation clearly states: “Canada is the only democratic federal system in the world in which the regions with the largest populations dominate both houses of the national legislature.“6 With an unelected Senate that no longer fulfills its role of equal regional representation and a House of Commons grounded on the representation of provinces proportional to their population, the legitimacy of Parliament has become a
The majoritarian model is currently being used in Canadas political economy, however, Canada’s would be better off with a shift to the consensus model as it included all minority groups and represented the true meaning of democracy. The consensus model represented the people in a society by including minority groups, using a federal or decentralized government and a multi-party system. The consensus model ensured the inclusion of groups in plural societies, where this was absent under a majoritarian ruling. A majoritarian model of government only made decisions in the hands of a select few, whereas, in a consensus model the power was divided in a federal or decentralized government. Finally, a consensus model allowed for multiple parties to run for election under the multiparty system and voting was done under proportional representation. However, in a majoritarian government, there are two parties running for office which operated under a disproportional election.
It has become widely accepted that Canada uses a first past the post electoral system. However, this system may not be in the best interest of Canada any more. There are many reasons why Canada should change its electoral system to a mixed member proportional one, a variant of proportional representation. With a first past the post system, the elected officials will always be of the majority and this excludes minorities from fair representation. Adopting MMP can create stronger voter turnouts, more personal campaigning, better individual representation, and better party selection. John Hiemstra and Harold Janson, are both in favour of a MMP electoral system. They understand that with the switch, the citizens will get more representation in
As time goes on, some countries become more relevant in the global sphere while others start to fade away. Canada is a country that only becomes more relevant as time goes on. Since being granted full sovereignty, Canada has had a growing role as a major world player. Much of their international growth has to do with its close ties to the United States and the United Kingdom. However, the country has also undergone huge change and refocusing on a domestic level. With influence from both Europe and the United States, Canada has a very unique system of governing. This paper will focus on a few major areas of Canada. It will look into the history of Canada, the structure of its government, its politics, and many of the major issues it faces today.
feature of the Canadian identity and should be a key driver of Canada’s foreign and development policy” (279). In fact, the majority of aid donor countries have begun to take governing policies and systems into account when deciding which countries should receive aid (Welsh and Woods, 2007). It is important to note that the government systems that meet this requirement for having successful governing systems do not necessarily have to be democratic and “focuses on institutions that underpin the functioning of free markets—for example, on the rule of law, the protection of property rights, competent bureaucracies, and effective restraints on
Canadians seem to follow in the footsteps of the Americans, but change it to make it better. In, Canada, our system of government is a blend of British and United States practices, with some Canadian additions, made to fit our own particular needs. Of course, British, United States, and Canadian governments all have a lot in common, since both Canada and the United States learned from Britain the all important idea of responsible government, which rest on the rule of law and the consent of people. We, paid close attention of the problems that were raised in the United States federal system and changed it considerably for Canada, to avoid what they we thought were its weakest points and make it fit better with the practices of British
Since the conception of the country Canada’s elections have worked within the confines of the First-Past-The-Post system, also known as the single-member-plurality system. The system has functioned the way it was intended to for the majority of the countries existence. However, after the introduction of legitimized additional parties into the Canadian political wasteland, the SMP (single-member-plurality) system has been producing less than democratic results. It has also been said that the SMP system was never truly democratic in the first place, particularity because of the power centralized within the ruling party as a result of the system. If Canada is going to continue to be touted as a free and prosperous it would be sensible to adopt
Altering the electoral system would undoubtedly benefit Canada in numerous ways through the use of a mixed electoral system using proportional representation and alternative voting. Over the course of Canada’s history, debate over electoral reform has appeared occasionally, with varying levels of intensity (Courtney 2005:154). Regardless, the amount of times that the topic has been discussed, demonstrates the need for its consideration. The word “change” often promotes a negative connotation, suggesting decreases in quality of government. However, it is important for one to focus on not “changing” the system, but rather improving it. This can be done through different voting methods such as proportional representation or alternative voting. Of course, there are disadvantages that could arise from electoral reform, especially in the case of either suggested systems. However, the vast advantages ultimately outweigh all potential consequences, justifying this action. Conclusively, it is advantageous to undergo electoral reform through a mixed election system of proportional representation and alternative voting, despite arguments opposed to both matters.
Throughout Canadian history, a responsible government depended on the act of the nation working together to apply appropriate public policy. William Lyon Mackenzie King, the prime minister of Canada in the 1920s (and again in the 1930s) once said, “Where there is little or no public opinion, there is likely to be bad government, which sooner or later becomes autocratic government.” This is true even almost 100 years later. A democratic society operates in relation to the voices of the nation. The Canadian government consists of many sectors to enforce this particular style of policy making, including the House of Commons, the Senate, the Cabinet, and of course, the prime minister. Many citizens may argue that these important sectors of government are aspects reflecting true democracy. On the other hand, some citizens might argue that the prime minister has significant control over Parliament alone, sometimes without the need for other voices. Government responsibility lies in the heart of the prime minister and can have significant control over different policy areas if he or she feels the need to do so. This often flies in the face of a democratic society.
Canada is one of the largest and most culturally diverse countries in the world. These characteristics make the democratic governing of the country a difficult task. A democratic model is needed that respects the fundamental rights and freedoms of various diverse cultures, and unites these cultures over a huge land mass as Canadians. To do this the Canadian government is one which is pluralist. Pluralism is the ideology that groups, (in Canada's case political parties), should rule in government. These parties help protect the fundamental rights and freedoms of everyone living in Canada, regardless of their ethnicity, or religious beliefs. The role political parties play in Canada is vital for