19-09-19 Constitutional question of practice test question
The Governor General’s power of disallowance was put aside because it was seen to obviate the most fundamental guarantee that the Constitution of Canada was meant to provide: the exclusive jurisdiction of the provinces in their local affairs.
Where is the constitutional defect?
The Governor General and his deputies are the guarantee of legitimate government, that is: the rule of government in accordance with the well-understood wishes and interests of the people. If the Lieutenant Governor is convinced that the Prime minister of a province is corrupt, what can he do?
How exactly would that work?
If the Senate and the House of Commons can’t agree and can’t agree to disagree on how the people wish to govern themselves, the underlying conflict is one of jurisdiction. These matters are always resolved within the Canadian system of Responsible Government by submitting the question to the people which they resolve by voting for one or the other of the contending parties. How could the Senate, being appointed, uphold its views in a general election?
The whole of the political capacity of the people is embodied in Parliament so that it may legitimately speak and act on behalf of the people. The means to lawfully conciliate the wishes and interests of the people is through the legislative process of parliament. What democratic mechanism must operate in order to respect the constitutional framework provided by the Constitution Act?
The Governor General must administer the powers vested in him in accordance with the well-understood principles of the British Constitution (4th Resolution of the Quebec Conference (1864) setting out the legislative intent of the Constitution Act). The principles ensuring the Responsible Government of Canada were adopted by the Assembly of United Canada on September 3rd, 1841. How do these principles constrain his duty?
Canada will not be complete until it determines how to replace its Head of State by itself, without the cover of sanction by the United Kingdom. This determination must uphold Canada’s self-government and thus, the constitutional framework and principles of the Canadian form of Responsible Government.