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Do you support the proposed 8-year term limit for senators
Yes  47%  [ 8 ]
No  41%  [ 7 ]
Unsure/Ambivalent/Other  12%  [ 2 ]
Total votes : 17

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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 6:36 am
 


I am concerned that Liberal Senators are stalling on the proposed 8-year term limit for senators. I think this measure is a first step in making the senate more democratic.

And yes, I know, I realize many would prefer the senate be abolished, but I would prefer that this discussion not turn to that issue. I want to talk about making the existing senate more democratic.

I want to see how people feel about this issue.

And how important is this issue to you?

a) A lot
b) somewhat
c) not very


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 6:51 am
 


I could care less


:D


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 7:51 am
 


By the absence of responses to my poll, it looks like a lot of people feel that way. :D


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:28 am
 


Id prefer an elected senate, but imposing term limits is a good start. Unfortunatly the asertation that the Liberal senators are the ones stalling is incorrect. Its senators of all stripes, and lets face it. If you or I were a senator we would probably stall it aswell. Great pay, only have to work 2 days a year and no accountability...

The only thing that is going to make it change is a public outcry.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:33 am
 


Yes, I concur, RihX. I think there should be a public outcry. I think one should be organized.

But first I want to see if people care about this issue.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:47 am
 


This reminds me of when whats-his-name tried to claim that electing senators would double the cost of an election, and just wouldn't accept a more reasonable position, even when offered to him.

One of those "I have to have it all" kind of arguments.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 12:05 pm
 


I'd be fine with an elected Senate so long as it didn't have the ability to block supply, which can lead to protracted constitutional crises.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 12:59 pm
 


It's not very important at all. I'd abolish it though.

Failing that, I'd have provincial governments put forward 3 names for each position (if a province wants to have an election for those name, that's up to them), then let the entire House of Commons vote on which candidate they want. Do it in revolving order so that there's stability and continuity...about the only thing the Senate provides that isn't available elsewhere.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 4:03 pm
 


Abolishing the senate is definitely one way to make the country less democratic.

Allowing the House of Parliament to elect the senate in place of the people can meke is less so still...


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 5:38 pm
 


Either their wandering into war zones, sucking up the money on junkets or doing nothing, and I'd like to see them all fired too but Patrick has a good point about it making Canada less democratic.

I'd like to see a reduced duration and some ways to stop them from all being simply party hacks.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 5:53 pm
 


Rihx Rihx:
Unfortunatly the asertation that the Liberal senators are the ones stalling is incorrect.


The news says otherwise:

May 09, 2007 06:39 PM
Canadian Press

OTTAWA – Liberal senators enraged the Harper government today by proposing yet another delay to a bill limiting Senate terms to eight years.
...
Senator David Tkachuk said it's clear the Liberals are using their majority in the Senate to prevent S-4 from ever coming to a vote."Don't hide behind your larger numbers," he told the Liberals.

http://www.thestar.com/News/article/212252

This wouldn't be another nasty case of the pro-Conservative media again, would it?


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 6:04 pm
 


Patrick_Ross Patrick_Ross:
This reminds me of when whats-his-name tried to claim that electing senators would double the cost of an election, and just wouldn't accept a more reasonable position, even when offered to him.

One of those "I have to have it all" kind of arguments.
Well if you feel the need to contest the point further, have at it, but I stand by original argument, and I never said double the cost of the election, however, it would still greatly increase the cost:
$1:
The Canadian taxpayer may feel that the Senate's achievements do not merit its cost, yet a review of its cost as compared to other Canadian legislatures showed, in 1991-92, that the Senate cost $1.61 per capita, while the House of Commons cost $8.49 per capita and the provincial legislatures cost anywhere from $18 to $30 per capita.38 While the per capita amounts will have increased somewhat over the past decade, the figures remain an accurate reflection of relative costs. In an elected Senate, especially one of a hundred or less members, senators would be representing great numbers of people in their constituencies. They would be required to set up constituency offices and increase their staff in Ottawa as well. The cost of an elected Senate would likely be quadruple its present cost of $56 million annually.

http://www.parl.gc.ca/information/about ... ocus-e.htm


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2007 6:47 am
 


$1:
Abolishing the senate is definitely one way to make the country less democratic.




Less democratic than a Prime Minister first appointing his bagman to the Senate, then making him a minister?

Abolishing the senates in the provinces hasn't made the provinces less democratic.


$1:
Allowing the House of Parliament to elect the senate in place of the people can meke is less so still...


Except that isn't what I suggested. What I suggested is that entire Parliament decide between three candidates put forth by a provincial government. If the province wants to have an election to determine who those three are, that's fine.

That's infinitely more democratic than the PM simply naming somebody like Michael Fortier as a senator.


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2007 8:46 am
 


Rev_Blair Rev_Blair:
$1:
Abolishing the senate is definitely one way to make the country less democratic.




Less democratic than a Prime Minister first appointing his bagman to the Senate, then making him a minister?

Abolishing the senates in the provinces hasn't made the provinces less democratic.


$1:
Allowing the House of Parliament to elect the senate in place of the people can meke is less so still...


Except that isn't what I suggested. What I suggested is that entire Parliament decide between three candidates put forth by a provincial government. If the province wants to have an election to determine who those three are, that's fine.

That's infinitely more democratic than the PM simply naming somebody like Michael Fortier as a senator.


Except in the case of Alberta, where the election is only from one half of the political spectrum. For such an election to be democratic, all parties have to be included. Otherwise it's like the elections the Soviets used to have, choose this Communist or that Communist...


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2007 9:29 am
 


All this talk of the "democratic deficit" in the senate is a massive distraction from true flaw in the "democracy" of Canada - the whole electoral system.

Witness the functional disenfranchisement of 665940 Canadians nationwide who voted Green in 2006, but elected no Green MPs?

Witness the functional disenfranchisement of 501016 Albertans (35%) who voted for parties other than the Conservatives only to see all 28 Alberta seats go to the Conservatives?

Those are just two glaring manifestations of the distortions of the FPTP system. Others include the NDP garnering almot 70% more votes than the Bloc in 2006, but electing barely half as many MPs. The 1979 election which granted the Clark Tories the government despite the fact that fewer people voted PC than voted Liberal. The 1987 New Brunswick provincial election in which the Liberals took all 58 of the seats with 60% of the votes.

FPTP is the biggest problem in Canada's democracy, not the senate.


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