OTTAWA (CP) - With an eye on a looming election, Prime Minister Stephen Harper is introducing legislation that would let voters choose senators for the first time.
But critics warn that he's trying to change a fundamental part of the political system without proper consultation and constitutional change. And some speculate it will lead to battles over who has more power - MPs or senators.
The new law would allow voters to choose preferred candidates to represent their province or territory in the upper chamber in a special polling system run by Elections Canada.
It falls short of actually electing senators, which would require constitutional change, but will provide the prime minister with a gauge of public feeling in making appointments.
He's too scared to open up the constitution so he's going to have a poll. Brilliant.
The bill is entitled: an act to provide for consultation with electors on their preferences for appointments to the Senate.
What kind of wishy-washy, half-assed bill is that which will only see those appointments made when serving senators either quit, die or turn 75?
Steve proudly proclaimed to his caucus:
"Imagine that, after a century and a half, democracy will finally come to the Senate of Canada.
Democracy in the senate may be on the march but it'll be the slowest damn parade you've ever seen.