Vincent Pouliot


President of the Institute of Responsible Government and Member of the Advisory Board. Vincent is a lawyer (retired). Following Quebec’s referendum to secede from Canada in 1995, he intervened before the Supreme Court of Canada in the Reference regarding the secession of Quebec (1997). The Court’s decision compelled him to study Canada’s constitutional evolution to discover the political structure and the democratic mechanism permitting the conciliation of Upper and Lower Canada in the government of the Province of Canada at the time of Confederation. The study revealed the constitutional basis upon which the model of Responsible Government was worked out in the Province of Canada; the cause of the growing dissatisfaction with this government; how the scheme of Confederation attempted to resolve this dissatisfaction by extending this model to form a truly federal model of the British constitution; how this was accomplished through the letter of the Constitution Act (1867); and how and why it was set aside before the first parliament of the Dominion was ever assembled. He undertook the Institute of Responsible Government to make known and further develop this self-correcting model of federal government.