I would point out that this is ridiculous. Almost every large chamber in the world, the U.S. Congress, the British House of Commons and the Australian upper and lower houses, gives the simple courtesy of allowing a statute to be put into the Hansard without actually reading it so it is available for others. It is a common courtesy around the world and I am surprised it is not extended in this House.
And so let me read into the record a draft constitutional amendment to reform the Senate of Canada.
Motion for a Resolution to Authorize an Amendment to the Constitution of Canada
WHEREAS the Constitution Act, 1982, duly in force and effect throughout Canada, provides that amendments may be initiated to the Constitution of Canada by resolutions of the Parliament of Canada and resolutions of the requisite number of legislative assemblies, depending on the nature of the subject matter;
AND WHEREAS the Senate of Canada was originally intended to bring to bear provincial, regional, and minority interests in the law-making process at the national level and to provide an effective balance to representation by population in the House of Commons;
AND WHEREAS experience has shown that the Senate has not been able to perform its role effectively because the distribution of seats and the selection process of Senators have undermined its legitimacy;
AND WHEREAS a reformed Senate, if properly constituted, could perform the role originally intended for it and alleviate feelings of alienation and remoteness toward national affairs which exist, particularly in the less populous regions of Canada and among minority groups;
AND WHEREAS the amendment proposed in the Schedule hereto recognizes the principle of the equality of all provinces and provides new institutional arrangements to assure all regions of Canada an equitable role in national decision making, thereby fostering greater harmony and co-operation between the governments and people of Canada;
AND WHEREAS Section 42 of the Constitution Act, 1982 provides that the subject matter of this amendment may be made by proclamation issued by the Governor General under the Great Seal of Canada where so authorized by resolutions of the Parliament of Canada and of the legislative assemblies of seven provinces having fifty per cent of the population of Canada;
NOW THEREFORE the [House of Commons, or Legislative Assembly of the province] resolves that an amendment to the Constitution of Canada be authorized to be made by proclamation issued by His Excellency the Governor General under the Great Seal of Canada in accordance with the Schedule hereto.
- Sections 21 to 36 inclusive and Section 53 of the Constitution Act, 1867, are repealed and the following substituted therefor:
- The Upper House, styled the Senate, constituted by Section 17 of this Act, shall be comprised of 108 members called Senators who shall be drawn from throughout Canada and elected in accordance with the provisions of Sections 22 and 23.