Weekly Round-Up: June 19, 2015

June 19th, 2015 by Dan Allan

Each Friday, CIVIX provides a digest of the major events in Canadian politics.

Federal election frenzy

The 42nd Canadian federal election is exactly four months away. The House of Commons will rise for the summer today and the parties have already made the “shift into full campaign mode.”

The Conservative, NDP and Liberal leaders all made policy announcements this week, and also found time to meet with U2’s frontman about development assistance and foreign aid. Bono attended question period and was given a standing ovation by MPs.

In other federal election news, Maclean’s announced that they would host the campaign’s first leaders’ debate on August 6, featuring Stephen Harper, Thomas Mulcair, Justin Trudeau and Elizabeth May. Elections Canada, our partner for the federal Student Vote, is warning voters to be prepared for new ID requirements this fall – make sure to get your paperwork done before October 19!

Electoral reform rundown

On Tuesday, the federal Liberal Party proposed 32 electoral reform measures that would come to pass if they were elected. What are the options for electoral reform in Canada? Global News has put together a great breakdown, and the Canadian Press details the “pros and cons of first past the post.”

Senate reform has also been in the news lately, and opinions on what to do with the Red Chamber differ greatly. Where do the provinces stand? Maclean’s has assembled the views of all ten.

Elections and by-elections

Following the federal vote, Newfoundland and Labrador and the Northwest Territories will both hold elections this November. The first NL leaders’ debate took place last week, and Elections NWT is profiling Returning Officers on their Facebook page.

In Nova Scotia, Premier Stephen McNeil announced that three provincial by-elections would take place on July 14. The province also amended their Elections Act, allowing candidates to collect a salary without it counting as an illegal campaign contribution.

Retirements and recalls

Conservative MPs James Rajotte and Leon Benoit announced this week that they would not be running for re-election. Rajotte has represented Edmonton as an MP since 2000, and Benoit has served in the House since 1993.

In British Columbia, a recall petition against Burnaby North MLA Richard T. Lee was not been submitted after campaign organizers failed to get enough signatures in the required 60-day timeframe. Recall legislation directed at Maple Ridge-Mission MLA Marc Dalton was cancelled in Maple Ridge-Mission last month.

Legislature lowdown

A Speech from the Throne opened a new session of the Alberta legislature on Monday. If you missed, you can read and watch Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell’s speech here. The province’s 70 new MLAs took part in their first question period Tuesday, and there were a few “fumbles” due to inexperience.

The BC legislature could be recalled for an “unusual” summer session, there are calls in PEI for “more substance [and] less theatre” at Province House, and NWT MLA Michael Nadli will not lose his seat after an assault conviction.

For ongoing updates, follow us on Twitter at @CIVIX_Canada.

Posted in English, Weekly Round-Up |

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