To hear Stephen Harper say it, one assumes there is only one way of reforming the Senate, through elections to the Senate. However, there are alternative ways to reform the Red Chamber that would be more in line with the Senate's purpose: to be the house of "sober second thought".
Making the upper chamber elected could, in most aspects render the Senate a second House of Commons. It would be more likely to have proportions of senators similar to the House. In other words, depending on when elections were held, it could become obsolete, a simple rubber stamp to whatever legislation is put forward by the House.
Instead, one could change the Senate's powers, so that it does not have a veto as it does now. Instead, it could take on more of the characteristics of the UK's House of Lords, which only has the power to delay legislation for a 12-month period. This would eliminate the Senate's current absolute veto on legislation, while ensuring that it could limit the powers of the government.
This, I think, might be more in line with what the Senate was designed to do, as it could give the nation reason to think about the legislation it wants pushed through, instead of becoming a passive chamber without much power. Then those senatorial salaries really would be a waste of money.
Recommend this Post at Progressive Bloggers
If you liked this post, please vote for my blog at Canadian Blogosphere
- Is John Baird out to Lunch?
- Liberals looking more ready for an election than i...
- Alternative reform to the Senate
- Harper's Defence on Senate Reform (it's a poor one...
- Ignatieff Wants a Coalition, Conservatives Say. No...
- What's with this government and protecting its cit...
- The possible excuse for Ignatieff's silence
- Insecure (New) Democrats?
- Ignatieff squanders opportunity, again
- Why are our leaders silent about Suaad Haji Mohamu...
- NDP winning the next election?
- Ignatieff, give Canadians something to talk about ...
- What's wrong with my generation and politics?
- Regressive Harmonized Sales Tax creating disharmon...
- ▼ August (14)