It’s that time again when the number of seats in the  Commons must be changed to reflect the population changes. Ontario will increase by 13 seats, down by five from what it was supposed to have.  British Columbia will receive five more seats, down from its original allotment of seven.  Alberta will increase its count to six.  Quebec will increase its count by two seats to keep its numbers in the House from dropping below its 23 per cent share of the population.

With its delayed and altered seat distribution bill, the conservative government appears to be struggling with how to reward the growing and more dynamic areas without alienating Quebeckers. The tensions thus produced could escalate if Quebec fails to win one of the two enormous shipbuilding contracts that could be announced as early as today.

Should Quebec get more seats?

What do you think?


  1. 1

    If Quebec wants more seats because of its special status — meaning it’s distinct from other “mere” provinces — then it shouldn’t get equalization payments which, constitutionally, is only available to provinces.

    If Quebec wants its $8 billion in annual equalization to continue, that means it is a province like all the others and should be treated as such, meaning “no” to any seats other than the proportion according to their share of the population.

  2. 2
    Neil McKenty Says:

    Sounds logical, Tony. But’s dead as a duck politically.

  3. 3

    Quebec is distinct and it is still a Province.

    I don’t remember the back story on seats and why some are getting more or less.
    I know that Harper is increasing the number (to 138)? What was the reasoning?

  4. 4
    Neil McKenty Says:


    As you know the representation of each province in the Commons depends on the population of that province. On a regular b asis (maybe every10 years) adjustments are made for those provinces that have gained population i.e. Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta. Quebec was given two more seats to maintain its 23 per cent of seats and its 32 per cent share of the total Canadian population

  5. 5

    An exception:

    According to the Canadian Constitution, Prince Edward Island can’t have less than 4 seats, which is three more than it would otherwise have:

  6. 6
    Neil McKenty Says:

    32 per cent of the Canadian population should read 23 per cent. Sorry

  7. 7

    This is not a popular subject. Bring on the politics & religion! 🙂

  8. This may not be religion but it surely is politics, Ms Littlepatti. In Canadian politics proportions are important out of proportion, especially in Québec and even more so with so few Québec representatives within the ruling party (not anybody’s fault but ours).
    23% of the population means 23% of the seats in the Commons, no less, no more notwhitstanding other considerations.

  9. 9

    A little side bar: Talking about proportion…Would we not solve problems with “a one man one vote”?

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