SHOULD QUEBEC HAVE MORE SEATS IN OTTAWA?

Numbers of seats in Parliament are related to a province’s population.  Following that principle three provinces – Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta – will receive more seats.  So to accomodate them the Harper government is planning to increase the number of seats in the Commons from 308 to 338.

This creates an anamoly.  It means that Quebec would have a lesser share of Commons seats (22.1 per cent)  than its share of the Canadian population (23.1 per cent)/  Opposition parties in the Commons are generally favourable to the idea of giving Quebec special dispensation in the allocation of Commons seats.

An NDP proposal says Quebec’s representation should  be fixed at 24.4 per cent of Commons seats. The Bloc will go along with that and the Liberals are leaning that way.

This proposal for a few extra Quebec seats makes a lot of sense.  It would not create a precedent and would not require a constitutional amendment.

Should Quebec have more seats in Ottawa?

What do you think?

8 Comments »

  1. 1
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    Any special dispensations to Quebec must habe conditions attached:

    – no more segregation and violation of fundamental human rights by Quebec;

    – a reinstitution of seats reserved in the BNA Act — and since done away with — for Quebec’s minorities.

    – total and complete repeal by Quebec of the hatr law/race law Bill 101.

    That should do it…oh, and Quebec can sign thr constitution.

  2. 2
    Neil McKenty Says:

    Here is the principle involved. Quebec is not a province like the others. Certain consequences folllow from this. E.G. Quebec has special staus when it comes to absolute number in the Houses of Commons. What’s so difficult to understand. Unless, of course, one is a francophobe.

  3. 3

    Yes, Quebec should have 24.4 seats. It makes sense. It makes sense to the opposition parties, the NDP , the Bloc and the Liberals.
    It makes sense to me… therefore,I declare it should be done!

  4. 4
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    Can’t have it both ways, Neil.

    If Quebec is a distinct society and a nation and is, as you say, not like the other provinces, there are consequences to that recognition.

    One of those consequences is that Quebec should not be entitled to the $8 billion a year it gets from Ottawa in equalization payments. You see, under the constitution, equalization is only for provinces, not distinct societies or nations within nations.

    So which is it?

    As for that tired old narrative that anyone against such a scheme must be a francophobe: I won’t dignify that comment with a response.

  5. 5
    Neil McKenty Says:

    Of course, it could be argued that Quebec is a distinct society with added responsibilites. Ergo it deserves more money from Ottawa.

  6. 6
    jim Says:

    As I recall it, the Constitution Act dictates that Quebec cannot have fewer than 75 seats.
    If Harper the monarchist wants to give Quebec more seats, would he void the minimum rule. If he tried to give with one hand and take away with another he wouldn’t win Quebec votes. As it stands now Quebec’s population could go down to 15% of the national population but still retain the 75 seats. Shush!!!

  7. 7
    Neil McKenty Says:

    Certainly Quebec was guaranteed 75 seats in the Constitution. Which is why I fail to understand that Harper may change that number to reflect Quebec’s population.

  8. 8
    James Wolfe Says:

    This is beyond ridiculous. The country is heavily in debt, we are heading into a double dip recession in the new year and what is this so called “conservative” government doing? Well why not spend a fortune and ad more seats to the house of commons, yes indeed, more MP salaries, expensive staff, expensive offices, more pensions…more money flushed down the toilet yearly. This will cost the taxpayers millions upon millions more yearly. Just sickening!!!

    Here is some free advice idiots. Reduce the amount of seats where the provinces are over represented such as Kebec. This fixes the problem without costing a fortune. No need to cost country a fortune and ad all these new seats. Its pretty simple, reduce the amount of seats in certain provinces and in turn the provinces now underrepresented will be represented properly. Rep by pop!!! No more new seats, especially for Kebec, they are over represented already.

    We have enough politicians already costing us way too much money. Think dummies, think!!! Stop wasting our money!!!


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