Canadian Citizenship (How Canadians govern themselves)

Canada is is a federal state, a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy

There are federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments in Canada.

The British North America Act or the Constituational Act in 1867 defined the responsibilites of the provincial and federal government.

Federal government takes responsibilities for the matters of national and international concerns. These include defence, foreign policy, interprovincial trade and communications, currency, navigation, criminal law and citizenship.

The provinces are responsible for municipal government, education, health, natural resources, property and civil rights, and highways.

The federal government and the provinces share jurisdiction over agriculture and immigration.

Every province has its own elected Legislative Assembly, like the House of Commons in Ottawa. We have 3 territories that are too small to be called Province.

Parliamentary Demcracy: People elect members to the house of common in Ottawa and provincial and territorial legislatures.

These representatives are responsible for passing laws, approving and monitoring expenditures, and keeping the government accountable

Cabinet ministers are responsible to the elected representatives, which means they must retain the “confidence of the House” and have to resign if they are defeated in a non-confidence vote.

Openning of the parliment 1957.

Three parts of the parliment: the Sovereign (Queen or King), the Senate and the House of Commons.

Provincial legislatures comprise the Lieutenant Governor and the elected Assembly.

In the federal government, the Prime Minister selects the Cabinet ministers and is responsible for the operations and policy of the government.

The House of Commons is the representative chamber, made up of members of Parliament elected by the people, traditionally every four years.

Senators are appointed by the Governor General on the advice of the Prime Minister and serve until age 75.

Bills are proposal for new laws and they get reviewd by the house of commons and senate. For bills to become laws they need to pass both chambers and get royal approval granted by the governor general.

Canada’s Head of State is a Sovereign. The head of the government is the prime minister.

David Johnston, 28th Governor General since Confederation. Governor General represents the Sovereign in Canada and is appointed by the Sovereign on the advice of the prime minister. Usually for 5 years. In each of the ten provinces, the Sovereign is represented by the Lieutenant Governor, who is appointed by the Governor General on the advice of the Prime Minister, also normally for five years.

Canada has 10 provinces and 3 territories.

Three branches of government: the Executive, Legislative and Judicial.

Each provincial and territorial government has an elected legislature where provincial and territorial laws are passed. The members of the legislature are called members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs), members of the National Assembly (MNAs), members of the Provincial Parliament (MPPs) or members of the House of Assembly (MHAs), depending on the province or territory.

In each province, the Premier has a role similar to that of the Prime Minister in the federal government, just as the Lieutenant Governor has a role similar to that of the Governor General. In the three territories, the Commissioner represents the federal government and plays a ceremonial role.

Supreme Court of Canada: 9 judges appointed by the Governor General.


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