Friday, September 10, 2004

What Real Government Reform Looks Like

Doug's Dynamic Drivel has a list of parliamentary reforms that a coalition of Canada's opposition parties are forcing through, thanks to the current minority government:
  • Putting all opposition motions to a vote, which could include motions on international treaties, troop deployments and changes to marriage rules. Currently, only a few opposition motions chosen by lottery ever make it to a vote in Parliament.
  • Establishing two new committees on women’s issues, and access to information and ethics matters, as well as dividing the current committee on aboriginal affairs and natural resources into two bodies.
  • Putting all-committee reports to a vote in Parliament so that action will be taken more often; some now disappear from the House of Commons agenda after they’re finished.
  • Giving all parties a bigger role in committees, and putting time frames on the work of committees.
  • Ensuring speeches by the leaders and the prime minister are open to questions.
  • Having the Speaker, not the government, appoint deputy speakers.
Given the abuse of power I've witnessed first hand this year by Republicans in the Virginia General Assembly as well as in Congress, I can only dream of bringing the same kind of reforms to the US. John Kerry, take note!

Vive le Canada!