Thursday, May 12, 2005

ROYAL VISIT

HRH Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada, is scheduled to actually be in the country from May 17th to the 25th. In a remakable confluence of events the Martin government might be defeated on May 19th.

Now, in my opinion the first act of the Queen upon arriving in Canada should be to dissolve the 38th Parliament on the basis that government no longer holds the confidence of the House, but I don't think that is going to happen.

However, does anyone know what the constitutional responsibilities of the Governor General are while the Queen is in the country? Do they remain the same, or does the Queen take over? If Martin loses another confidence vote on the 19th is he required to go out to Alberta, meet the Queen and ask that she dissolve Parliament?

Update, 13 May, 1:24 p.m: Kevin Brennan of Tilting at Windmills, whom I suspect knows what he's talking about, answers my question in the comments below, indicating that the G.G retains all of her powers even while in the country. I don't know whether that means the Queen could still choose to exercise her powers, but presumably she will not.

However, there is apparently speculation as to whether the Queen will still make her visit given the current political crisis and the fact that our head of state is loathe to be even associated with the politics and governance of our country. What a bizarre constitution.

Posted by Matthew @ 12:21 p.m.

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We should dissolve Parliament on that day because it's when Star Wars II: Revenge of the Sith opens. Martin is clearly hoping that Star Wars mania will distract voters for the duration of his election campaign. ; )

Posted by Blogger Aaron @ May 12, 2005 2:59 p.m. #
 

Based on the quality of the last two movies, using Star Wars as a distraction would seem to be another ill-conceived plan by the Martin PMO.

I'd rather sit through boycotted committee meetings than watch another Star Wars film as bad as the last two.

Posted by Blogger Matthew @ May 12, 2005 5:00 p.m. #
 

I think GG takes a smoke break. I think it would be sweet for the biggest name in unmeritorious wealth and status to be part of a lecture on democratic freedoms.

Alan
GX40

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous @ May 12, 2005 6:07 p.m. #
 

I have to say, looking in from a far, the fun only seems to be growing. Can't say the Martin government hasn't been entertaining, not that that's what you're looking for in Prime Minister.

Posted by Anonymous Adam @ May 12, 2005 10:20 p.m. #
 

As one of HM (not HRH)'s unwilling Australian subjects, we've got a law specifying the governor-general stays in office and keeps all powers while the royal foot brushes the national soil. Canada's almost certainly got the same kind of law.

Posted by Blogger Buster @ May 13, 2005 2:27 a.m. #
 

Alan is right. Canadian law is the same; the Governor-General retains all the powers of the office even when the Queen is present in Canada.

Posted by Anonymous Kevin Brennan @ May 13, 2005 1:13 p.m. #
 

Finally, an answer.
So everything is still up to Clarkson.

Posted by Blogger Matthew @ May 13, 2005 1:20 p.m. #
 
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