A constitution is a document that contains a set of laws formulated to govern a nation or an organization. The laws are based on agreements that the members of the society consent to; it defines the members’ rights and privileges and the mode of administration (Munro 3). A constitution gives the law an empirical aspect in that every interpretation of the law is based on what is written in the constitution. Besides, there are nation states in which the constitution is unwritten; laws in such a constitution are not fixed or certain (Munro 2). An unwritten constitution relies heavily on “common law” (Munro 2). Common law is largely customary norms, unwritten laws, which govern relationships among a people. Judges often borrow from these unwritten laws to protect the rights that are not mentioned in the written constitution.
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A constitution in many nations and organizations is regarded as the supreme law and supersedes any other source of law. Constitutional provisions provide a framework for the purpose of governance and protection of human rights. Legislation is the process of making and enacting laws. The executive and the legislature are the two main arms of government mandated to enact legislations. Like the constitution, legislated laws are for purposes of governance and protection of particular rights. Since the constitution is the “supreme law,” it is a requirement that legislated laws conform to the constitution (Munro 14).
Once a bill is legislated by the governing body, it becomes a law. What follows the legislation process is implementation of the law. This process ensures that everybody submits and conducts themselves according to the provisions of the law. The executive agency has the mandate to put the law in force by ensuring that the citizens comply with it. The executive uses governmental regulations to draw the guidelines on how the laws are to be implemented. A constitution provides a guideline or a roadmap that suggests how laws should be implemented.
As to whether a constitution is rigid or flexible, it all depends entirely on the procedures required to amend or change the constitution. A flexible constitution can be a mended through “a simple majority vote” whereas a rigid constitution requires an extremely high threshold for any amendments.
Tenets of Modern Constitutionalism
In true democracies, the constitution is the fundamental or supreme law, to which all other laws must conform. The case is different in dictatorship and authoritarian types of government. Rulers in dictatorships use laws that are convenient to achieving their goals and which do not reflect the will of the people. Modern constitutionalism is based on three major pillars; creation of three branches of government that are independent, regarding the constitution as the supreme law, and limitation of the powers of government in the constitution (Munro 9).
The Canadian government is divided into three agencies i.e. “the executive, the legislature and the judiciary” (Munro 45). Each of these government agencies exercises separate powers from the other. Separation of powers as a tenet of modern constitutionalism has been achieved through the three government agencies.
The constitution in Canada is regarded as the supreme law and comprises of thirty articles. The constitution provides a framework that guides the Canadian dual legal system (Munro 44). The powers of each of the branches of government are limited to the constitution as a fundamental law of the land.
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Law is dynamic everywhere based on the dynamic societal morals and ethics. Canada developed its constitution from the British legal system but has with time adopted law reforms either to add or remove sections of the law to suit changing times. These amendments have always been developed by the law experts, interest groups and enacted by the legislators with the mandate of the Canadian people. In this regard, the law must echo the will of the people who are to be governed by it.
Governments around the world have been steadily growing towards more responsive and accountable ways of executing their roles. Further, the governments have also been endeavoring to define and outlining the powers required for them to deliver on their roles as per constitutional requirements. Those who are governed are always developing mechanisms to hold the government accountable in every step to fulfill its promises to the citizens. As the saying goes, power corrupts, often it is those who are corrupt in society that seek power hence the need to create checks and balances for them.
The governed use the constitution as a tool to check the way government exercises its powers. It acts as a contract agreement between the government and the citizen. Since its government that creates the laws itself, it is not possible for it to strike a contract with the people. To a higher extent, the laws permit the government to do all it can within its powers. In order to deliver to the needs of the citizens, the citizens must be involved in the process of limiting the powers of the government.
There are two ways that government limitation occurs; in democracies, the constitution is used a tool to limit the powers of the government (Munro 15). In dictatorships and authoritarian governments, the government decides how to apply the checks and balances. Dividing government into branches is a strategy that is often applied to devolve powers to smaller government agencies which in turn check each other. Voting is also used to limit governments mandate to stipulated time periods.
The Canadian constitution contains charters which are meant to protect the rights of its citizens. Charters allow citizens to challenge the legislature in court; in case the government or legislature violates their rights. Creation of the federal and provincial governments provides a mechanism through which the government checks its powers. The provincial government checks the federal government and vice versa. The limitations to governments are meaningful to the citizens only when democracy prevails. The limitations empower the citizens to check how the government exercises the powers vested to it.
Rights and Freedoms Enjoyed by Canadians
The Canadian charter of rights and freedom spells out the rights of its citizens. The rights and freedoms include; Fundamental freedoms: This right allows the Canadian citizens to belong to religions of choice or to none at all. It also grants every citizen the right to assemble and share ideas anywhere as long as he or she does not interfere with the rights of others. The fundamental freedom also grants media the right to make public any information as long as it is true and can be justified (Munro 31).
Democratic rights: this permits Canadian citizens a right to take part in the election of leaders for parliament, provincial representatives and other elective positions through voting. Further, the democratic right restricts the number of years an elected government can be in power (Munro 33).
Mobility rights: the Canadian citizens “can enter, remain or leave the country” at will, they also have a right to work anywhere in the country as long as they have the relevant skills required for the job (Munro 33).
Legal rights: this comes in force in case a citizen is under a legal procedure for breaking the law. Every citizen is innocent in the face of the law until proofed guilty. Individuals are not supposed to be detained, or handled by police with excessive force, law enforcers have to use the appropriate law enforcement procedures when dealing with any citizen deemed to have broken the law. Other rights contained in the charter include; the right to use one’s own language, equality and aboriginal rights (Munro 35).
There is an executive act which can be ratified without necessarily involving the approval of parliament; ratification of the international treaty is carried out solely by the legislature. This precedence leads to utilization of international laws that are not consistent with the local standards. Again, only the federal executive is allowed to go into international treaties with other nations. This makes it challenging for the treaty requirement to be implemented at the provincial levels.
The laws governing any state are as dynamic as the moral and social ethics of society. The “British North America act of 1867” dominated Canada, then under three detached provinces; “province of Canada, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia” (Munro 8). The act made provisions that would allow more other colonies to join in and form more territories. The act also outlined the country’s government structure based on the Westminster parliamentary system but divided into federal systems.
This act is still the most famous in the Canadian constitution. Following constitutional patriation in 1982, the act was not amendment but only renamed as “Constitution Act, 1867” (Munro 67). At present, the document is used as a foundation from which power is divided between the federal government and the provinces. Based on this analysis, chances that the Act may be amendment soon are not so prominent because of the fundamental role and position that the Act holds.
The peace, order, and good government article has been an area of great controversy in the Act. The article assigns exclusive rights to provincial legislatures to make laws that are in line with the slogan: “peace, order, and good governance (Munro 22). Law Interpreters criticize the article on the basis that it limits the powers of provinces in relation to the federal states especially in relation to automobile invention.
The minority language right has also been an area of controversy in the Act. Considering that the language issue has been a grave matter in Canada since the colonial days, the French had from the beginning resisted the British assimilation fearing they would lose identity. The Canadian minorities have been vocal in asking for the use of their original languages in police, schools and other government sectors.
Political Parties and Democracy
Political Parties are organizations formed to champion for given interests in a nation. Political parties aim at gaining political power by being representative of the aspirations and interests of the majority in a nation (Diamond & Plattner 11). Political parties are seen as the best vehicle through which different national interests can be rallied. Ideally, political parties should be representative of people who hold different views on a country’s governance. Unfortunately, political parties around the world no longer have distinguishing manifestos or ideologies. One can, therefore, comfortably assert that political parties are about ascending to power. Individuals organize themselves into a political party because they desire to rule.
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Political parties have failed people in many countries. However, in themselves, political parties are very important. They are a channel through which all interest groups in a nation can voice their concerns. Direct democracy is not possible in nations due to related costs. This is the reason why representative democracy is the norm in most democratic states. Therefore, through political parties, the different interest groups find representation (Diamond & Plattner 39). To be elected into power, a political party has to identify with given interests that distinguish it from other political parties. Secondly, political parties have to identify individuals to be flag bearers of the party ideals and aspirations. Through choice of political party and party candidates in preliminaries, the electorate is involved in the political space.
Consequently, the health of political parties directly impacts on the health of a nation’s democratic dispensation. If political parties are undemocratic, the voice of the people is stifled and thus democracy in a nation is compromised (Diamond & Plattner 14). If political parties are functioning properly, they first form a bloc in parliament or government that represents the people’s interests. Through activities of the political parties, the electorate is able to voice its concerns about governance. Political parties and the leaders know well that if they do not impress the electorate, they cannot be put into power. Therefore, through championing common man’s interests or a section of the public’s interests, political parties are assured of support. Through political parties checking each other as they compete for electorates favour, the citizens hold their government accountable.
Roles of Political Parties in Democratic and Non-Democratic States
Political parties can only be effective when the regime in place allows for democratic space. If there is no democratic space, the presence of political parties alone does not help anything. In a number of countries in Africa, they have many registered political parties. However, the countries are undemocratic because the democratic space is stifled by the regime in place (Diamond & Plattner 154).
Whether in a democratic or undemocratic state, political parties should ideally serve towards enabling people to contribute to or influence national policy. First, political parties are supposed to help bring together individuals who have similar political ideas. Therefore, through political parties, people of similar political ideas and philosophies should be able to come together and strategize on ways of sharing or selling them to others and implementing them. In democratic parties, this function of political parties is realized. In undemocratic countries, political parties are used as machineries for keeping people tied in an ideology. Most communist parties tend towards tying people to an ideology rather than opening people up to fully express themselves.
In democratic states, people are appointed or elected to contest for national seats from their political parties. Each political party does its elections to get the leaders to contest with candidates from other parties. In undemocratic states, political parties only serve to justify the interests of the dictators. For instance, party organs are used to endorse leaders and grassroots people are not involved.
Political parties help towards providing a ruling political entity and other entities to check and hold the ruling entity accountable. However, opposition politics is only successful in a democratic state. In undemocratic nations, opposition parties are handled heavy handedly thus they have little influence on how things are done. While opposition political parties in democratic states focus on developmental issues, the opposition in undemocratic parties focus on opening up of democratic space and allowing parties democratic freedoms.
How Party Systems Evolve
Political parties evolve depending on the amount of democratic space allowed and the voting or electoral system in place. In states where democratic space is open, more divergent views are entertained. In such like space, individuals coalesce around simple differences are able to form their own parties. In countries where democratic freedoms are limited, only limited parties are formed. Difference in opinion is not allowed and thus people do not have much differentiating factors to determine break away points.
Apart from democratic space, the way citizens vote and the rules governing the process of choosing representatives determines political party formation (Diamond & Plattner 43). If the voting system allows for full expression of people’s interests, many will fight for given interests within the limited political parties. If the electoral process does not allow for internal democracy in the parties, more parties are formed to accommodate for varied interests. Basically, political parties divide and new ones are formed when existing parties do not accommodate certain interest groups.
Some countries have chosen to be non-partisan. Therefore, no parties exist but rather individuals are elected on their own merit not according to party affiliations. In other countries like China, only one party is permitted by the regime. Single party systems are only possible or effective where there is no democratic space e.g. in a dictatorship. In some undemocratic countries, other parties may exist but are not legally recognized or supported by the state.
However, some countries have one dominant party due to historical factors. For instance in South Africa, the ANC is a dominant party and there is no likelihood of another party ascending to power due to the history of ANC. Instead of a one dominant party system, countries or states like the UK have a two major political party. Two political party systems are possible if there is a basis for a fundamental dual division. In the UK there are the left wing i.e. labor party and its partners then the right wing party i.e. the conservatives and its partner parties. Some other countries like the USA have a plural electoral system that allows for establishment of multiple parties.
Functions of Political Parties and Pressure Groups
Pressure groups work specifically towards resolution of or tackling of issues by the government. This is unlike the political parties whose main aim is to ascend to power. There are different types of pressure groups. The major categories of pressure groups include economic groups, attitude change groups, intergovernmental groups and finally public pressure groups (Diamond & Plattner 204).
Economic pressure groups work towards better economic terms and conditions in a country. One of the major economic pressure group is the trade unions. Trade unions are allowed all over the world and all employees or workers have a right to join trade unions. Trade unions work hard towards bettering the life of employees. They ensure workers are not maltreated by their employers. The other economic pressure groups are trade associations. For instance, The ‘Manufacturers Association’ helps in negotiating terms of trade and influencing trade policy in a country. There are also professional economic pressure groups e.g. ‘the Canada Medical Association’. They look into issues affecting the professional fraternity. Finally, there are big private companies, e.g. commercial banks in Canada, which also act as economic pressure groups. This corporations often have their own interests and given they are major players in the economy they have capacity to negotiate their own terms with the government.
Public pressure groups, such as ‘Canadian Tax Foundation’, help in pushing the government to address certain issues of public interest. Attitude change pressure groups also work towards given public issues being addressed. However, rather than focus on government, they strive to change public belief and attitudes towards given issues. Final group i.e. the intergovernmental pressure groups work more on issues of international nature. They ensure synergy is achieved in addressing issues that affect more than just one state.
Pressure Groups Claiming to Represent the ‘Public Interest’
There are many pressure groups that have sprung up and purport to represent the public interest. Public pressure groups deal with issues that the public is concerned about. For instance, sections of society are alarmed at high rates of abortion, environmental degradation, increase in crime rates and issues like capital punishment.
The major activities of pressure groups is lobbying, protesting, sensitizing and educating. For example, anti-abortion activists have often lobbied politicians to pass anti-abortion legislation. They have protested and engaged in forms of civil disobedience so as to bring other stakeholders to listen to them. They also create forum through which they highlight, sensitize and educate the public on dangers of abortion or why abortion is wrong.
These pressure groups are likely to succeed in their endeavors because individuals have lost faith in the political system. Members of parliament no longer represent the aspirations of the majority in the nation. Political parties have become elitist and are more concerned with political power to care about really issues that some individuals are passionate about. Therefore, through pressure groups, individuals feel they are exercising they capacity to push towards desired change. The allure of taking responsibility and being in charge of change process lures many into pressure groups or becoming sympathizers of the same.
Politicians are also easily swayed by the pressure groups. Pressure groups provide real issues that people are already passionate about. Therefore, in order to appeal to the groups and win their votes, political parties easily associate with such groups. As a result, there is high likelihood of pressure groups achieving their goals.
Vote of a Single Individual
One’s vote in an election makes a huge difference. Whether one votes or not, he or she influences the outcome of the electoral process. There have been cases of ties in electoral processes. For instance, some constitutions require a president to garner a fifty percent plus one majority. In the case of the USA where the college electoral system is used, a simple few votes dictate whether a final garners a state to his or her side or not. Therefore, in politics, each and every vote counts (Diamond & Plattner 84). There is nobody to assume or dismiss in an electoral process because all persons have one vote. With one vote, a citizen either ushers in desired changes or promotes the status quo. Every single vote that comes in puts a given interest above others in terms of priority as espoused by different party policy inclinations. Failing to vote also counts as a form of voting i.e. by not voting, one allows for others to forge for their interests at the expense of his or her priorities expense. This is why full participation by the electorate is encouraged.
However, voter apathy has been registered in most democracies around the world. Some of the reason why voter apathy is prevalent is lack of major ideological differences between political parties. Some voters do not see the need to vote because there are no major shifts even when another party gets into power. In the 2008 general elections, Canada registered the lowest voter turnout in history. Political disinterest has continued to grow due to continued bad governance by the different political parties. Ordinary Canadians tend to feel that once voted in, politicians forget about campaign promises and greedily go on rampage; serving only their personal interests.
An Electoral System
An electoral system is also widely referred to as the voting system (Diamond & Plattner 24). A voting system in a nation state refers to all requirements that have to be fulfilled by participants and all the other rules that have to be adhered to by voters. It broadly refers to the mechanism employed to facilitate free and fair voting. If any election system rules or requirements are flouted, the elections are declared invalid and consequently nullified. Different countries have or employ different kinds of voting systems.
The criterion for winning an election is determined by the electoral system. In some systems, one has to garner the majority votes to be declared winner (Maisel & Brewer 52). Therefore, at all levels of voting, what matters is for candidates to garner the majority vote. In other electoral systems, there is emphasis on representation. Although the majority may favour a given candidate, nevertheless the electoral system may favour a minority candidate for the sake of allowing representation of minorities. Some electoral systems allow for a plural vote while others are tailored. In some systems like the USA, college system, votes as per state are weighted.
The kind of electoral system chosen by a country has to be responsive to the nation’s characteristics and governance structure. For instance, the type of constituencies created or kind of representation adopted in a country directly impacts on kind of electoral system to be adopted. Canada applies the pluralist voting system. Moving to a more proportionate system would serve the country better. Rather than members of parliament just being supported by majority in their constituencies, there should be a way of their gaining representative power equal to other legislators; given they have equal voting rights in parliament. Proportionate representation would allow for more accurate representation that going simply by plural system.
Electoral process in Canada
General elections in Canada are called by the governor general upon request by the Prime Minister. Once the governor announces a general election, the Election Day is set. The Election Day has to be set at least thirty six days from when the election is called for. The head of elections in Canada is called Chief Electoral officer. He or she runs an agency that is supposed to be professional and very efficient in its operations. He or she enjoys security of tenure and serves till retirement.
Elections in Canada are planned such that despite different time zones, results relatively come in at same time. The whole of Canada falls in six different time zones. It is the work of the electoral body to ensure the elections are well scheduled. Once polls have been scheduled, the electoral body registers or receives applications from all political entities planning to run in the elections. Voter registers are revisited and updated i.e. ensure those who died are not in the register and all new eligible voters are registered. The electoral organ also ensures that all citizens are informed about who is vying for what seat and what parties are participating in the general election. The electoral body achieves the aim of informing the public through full-fledged civic education via all possible media.
In the run up to elections, returning officers are elected. Returning officers are in charge of the electoral process in every electoral district. The returning officers’ initial task is to ensure all district electoral records are in order and up to date. They look for pertinent information and eligible voters and ensure all is ready for a free and fair election. In the meantime, politicians will also be busy ensuring the registers have been updated.
When voting day comes, Canadian are allowed to vote as they deem fit. Voting can be done regularly i.e. going to the poll station and voting or through any other means as specified by the election regulator. After the voting exercises, counting of votes and tallying of results is done at the polling stations. The process is done transparently with all stakeholders and interest groups sending a representative to poll stations to monitor the process.
The Advantages and Disadvantages of the USA Primary System
In the United States of America, the presidential election process begins with primary elections (Maisel & Brewer 23). The primaries are important towards direct participation of the states in ultimate election of president. The primaries are organized and managed by local governments. They help as pointers to how many delegates the candidates can count on at the national convention, which decides on a party candidate in the elections. The primaries help states in deciding what delegates are to go to the national convention.
Primaries are very important because they help candidates to get up close to the citizens as they drum up support for their candidacy (Maisel & Brewer 27). Secondly, this primaries offer states a proportionate opportunity to decide on who becomes presidential candidate. By so doing, presidential candidates are vetted even before they officially hit the campaign trail as official candidates of their parties. Finally, by first allowing primaries in small states, the system offers little known and underfunded people a chance to meet the people and sell their ideas. Then they can ride on popularity gained to marshal resources.
The disadvantage of this system is that some states that have their primaries late in the year do not seriously impact on the process. There are complains that smaller states come first in the primaries that determining the outcome (Maisel & Brewer 78). There is always a scramble to be first to do primaries; that way, a state influence outcome of primaries due to bandwagon kind of following. The big and vote regions only have their primaries when the candidate for parties is already kind of decided. For instance, in 2008, there were complains that vote rich New Jersey had primaries long after Kerry had already been decided on as the unopposed candidate of the democrats. Despite such like challenges, the primaries system seems based suited for a country of America’s characteristics.
Televised Debates between and among Leadership Candidates
Televised debates are important in an electoral process. During campaigns, most candidates have well rehearsed campaign speeches that they deliver. However, in a debate, personal acumen comes into play as the contesters take each other on. This debates help in informing the public about candidate’s individual capability. In big rallies, rehearsed speeches and cliché statements are offered to a supporting audience. In the debates, individuals share their views before a critical audience that is ready to tear into their thinking. The debates make a lot of difference and should inform the public on what kind of man or woman they are to vote for.
The unfortunate thing is that not many citizens pay attention to the debates. In debates, candidates may tend towards discussing the fine print of issues. However, majority of citizens are not keen on those small differences around which the candidates may want to bring each other down during debates. Secondly, people listen to the debates largely with already decided minds. Therefore, they do not appreciate the arguments of candidates in totality but selectively choose what reinforces their convictions. The final interesting thing about these debates is that they seem to serve basically for political communication and some candidates do not discuss issues. Rather, they use the debates to frustrate fellow candidates out for healthy debate through rhetoric and unsubstantiated aspersion.
All said and done, debates serve well especially for learned and critical voters. Personally, I tend to believe debates provide an opportunity to the public to interact with the real person of the candidate. The way someone engages a debate sums up all there is about his or her beliefs, values and intellectual capacity. The best leader is not necessarily the best intellectual around; however, capacity to debate lucidly should point to capacity to lead effectively. Leadership is about decision making.
2006 Canadian Federal Election
Surprise in the 2006 Election
The unusual 2006 federal election in Canada was bound to be a two hose race i.e. liberals against conservatives as usual. The results were not very surprising given liberals were overly tainted. For the first time, the liberal party was mired in a scandal that it could not exonerate itself from. Weakened by the sponsorship scandal, people were widely appalled by the corruption in the party and by the party. The fate of the liberal party was sealed by the Gomery report that indicated a corruption with impunity within the government. The opposition found a lease to fix the liberal party and thus voted it out of government through a vote of no confidence in parliament.
During the campaigns, the conservatives managed to get an early start (Russell 10). Harper took to the road expounding on the policies he was proposing. News of investigations by police into operations of liberal ministers further tarnished the Liberal party and affected its campaigns. Any keen observer would have predicted the conservative victory. A minority government was also expected given the state of affairs. Although the liberals were mired in scandal, they had managed to rebrand well during campaigns. Secondly, the conservative hold in Quebec and in major urban areas had waned pointing to a minority win by the conservatives. Finally, other parties especially the Quebecois and NDP were also riding on the scandals and weak points in both the liberal and conservative parties to gain ground. The Quebecois had a strong footing in Quebec while NDP capitalized on leftist voters that did not want to associate with the Liberal Party.
Policy Change by Harper Minority Government
A minority government in has impacted heavily on Canada’s policies. Due to being minority and related challenges or insecurities, the government tends to be walking a tight rope when it comes to policy (Russell 41). Under the watch of Prime Minister Harper, Canada lost its role as a major player in international affairs. The government is tied and cannot make any unilateral policy decisions. Internal governmental insecurities have affected Canada’s effort to position itself properly in world affairs.
With globalization, failures in the international area also translate into domestic policy failures. Prime Minister Harper seems to have realized the importance of good foreign policy. Unfortunately, he tends to use the foreign policy as a political tool rather than a strategic national tool. The focus on trying to build a political majority leads to fragmented approaches to policy. Rather than identifying national priorities to guide policy, focus is on which interest groups would help build a majority. This explains why Canada remains a hard-line supporter of Israel despite glaring indicators that such policy is skewed. A minority government is often fighting for survival and thus does not focus of policy that may be unpopular but progressive.
A Majority from the Next Federal Election
Prime Minister Harper is determined to have a majority conservative party win come the next elections. All that is being done today can be directly linked to next election majority win aspirations. Although the conservative party is not yet strong enough, every effort is being taken to ensure a majority win in the next elections. A likely development will be stepping down of Harper so as to allow for another figure who will appeal across board. This is highly unlikely to be Harper’s personal initiative. Therefore, it can only come out of party resolution to have him step down.
The good thing for the conservatives is that the Liberals are still too weak to marshal a major setback to Conservative aspirations. Major players in the conservative party can be seen to be marshalling support from different quarters by using their political offices to effect policy changes that favor given interest groups. All other efforts aside, the prime minister is focused on painting a liberal led coalition as not viable. Through propaganda like campaigns against a possible NDP and Liberals coalition, the prime minister is likely to retain his political position and earn a majority conservative party win. Another reason why a conservative majority government is likely is the fact that liberal have not done much to repair their image and position properly. It seems the liberals are waiting for Conservatives mistakes which are not coming easily.
Canadians Respect Minority Governments
Majority government is desirable in any plurality based electoral system. All prime ministers in Canada desire to have majority seats in the House of Representatives. A majority government can more effectively push through its policy plans than otherwise. When a party fails to get a majority and thus forms a minority rule, it can only survive through constant compromise and negotiations with other parties.
Some Canadians do not like minority governments because they operate as fragile and unstable entities. The government is often held hostage by political interests and cannot chart its own political agenda as per its policy propositions. The consultative and compromise mechanism that keeps minority government in power is good. However, it makes governments weak and always susceptible to manipulation by interest groups, lobbyists and other political actors.
Minority governments have been experienced by Canadians on a number of occasions across history and are thus looked at as normal (Russell 34). Although some citizens do not trust minority governments due to related instability, there are some citizens who actually like minority governments. Their argument is that a minority government helps defeat partisan politics that would otherwise be supported by a majority government. Therefore, they even have suggested the adoption of a proportionate representative electoral system which in essence supports formation of coalition governments.
Diamond, Larry Jay & Marc F. Plattner. Electoral Systems and Democracy. Baltimore: JHU Press, 2006.
Maisel, Louis Sandy & Mark, D. Brewer. Parties and Elections in America: The Electoral Process. 5th Eds. New York: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007.
Munro, Joseph Edwin Crawford. The Constitution of Canada. Charleston: BiblioBazaar, LLC, 2009.
Russell, Peter H. Two Cheers for Minority Government: The Evolution of Canadian Parliamentary Democracy. Toronto: Emond Montgomery Publications, 2008.