Monthly Archives: October 2019

Government Formation

On the fourth Monday after the election (Nov 18th) Parliament reconvenes. The members are sworn in and the election of the Speaker of the House is held. After the Speaker is sworn into office they put the question to the House “who does the House nominate to form a government for the 43rd Parliament of Canada”?. Any Member may nominate someone but by custom and precedence only those who know that 5% of the full House of Commons (17 of the 338) will endorse their nominee actually stand up to nominate. For a Party that has 17 members or get that number to back them their most senior member is the one to stand up and nominate their Party Leader for Prime Minister.

In this Parliament the most senior members of the Liberal, Conservative, Bloc, and NDP parties stand up and in order of their seniority in the House nominate their respective Party Leaders. All of whom will get the 17 or more members to endorse their Leader as PM. The 4 Leaders go to Rideau Hall the next day where they are formally asked to form a council-designate for consideration to form the government for the 43rd Parliament. Those councils are put to a government formation vote in the House where the Speaker asks the MPs “which of these council-designates have the confidence of this House to be the government of Canada”?

First vote Liberal 158 / Conservative 121 / Bloc 32 / NDP 27. The NDP is removed from the second ballot and the Bloc withdraws from it as well. Last vote Liberals 158 / Conservative 153. Green and NDP abstain and Bloc backs the Tories. And done.

Thursday the Speaker swears in the Bloc and NDP as shadow councils. Saturday the Governor-General at Rideau Hall swears in the Conservative council-designate as the Council of Opposition. Sunday the GG does the same for the Liberals as the Council of Ministers.

And done and works even if the Commons was all independents.

Canada Votes! 2019

hungHere we go again, another federal election and no one to vote for. Voted first thing on Friday the first day for the advance poll. By the time I got in 5 people came after me and when I left shortly afterwards another half dozen lined up. We may very well have a hung Parliament and this post is to show you a set procedure for dealing with the process of government formation.

The fourth Monday after the election (November 18th) the House of Commons reconvenes. In the morning you have the swearing in of the members and in the afternoon the election of the Speaker of the House. After the Speaker is sworn in the Speaker then asks the Members of Parliament who has the confidence of the House to form a government?

For the last Parliament the most senior Members for the Liberal, Conservative, and NDP parties would stand up and the Speaker would ask each in order of seniority who the Governor-General should call upon to form a Government. Each would give the name of their Party Leader. Actually any MP could stand up and nominate someone but by custom and precedent only those who know they will have 17 members to stand up and second that nomination do so. After the nominating is done the Speaker asks is there 17 members to endorse each nominee (5% of the House or 17 of 338)? Which is a formality and the Speaker advises the Governor-General to call upon the three nominees to form a Government.

The Governor-General on Tuesday morning calls them all in and asks them to submit a membership for a cabinet and to give that list tomorrow. On Wednesday morning the all go back and give the list for a Council of Minsters to serve in the 42nd Parliament. Wednesday afternoon the Speaker asks the Members of Parliament which of these council-designates have their confidence to form the Government of Canada.

There would be only one vote for the Liberals would have a majority with the Conservatives in second and the NDP third. Thursday in the House of Commons the NDP council-designate would be sworn in as a shadow council by the Speaker. On Saturday at Rideau Hall the Conservative council-designate would be sworn in as the Council of Opposition by the Governor-General. Sunday the Liberals sworn in as the Council of Ministers.

And your done! Even works if all members are independents.