SCC ruling on Senate reform: Harper Conservatives should stop wasting Parliament’s time

The Green Party of Canada is unsurprised by today’s ruling on Senate reform, which marks the third consecutive defeat for the Harper Conservatives in a Supreme Court reference case.

Today the Court ruled unanimously that Prime Minister Harper’s June 2011 Senate Reform Act, which sought to impose term limits for Senators and to transform the Senate into an elected body, would require the consent of seven provinces representing a majority of the Canadian population. The Court also ruled that abolition of the Senate would require unanimous consent from all provinces, the House of Commons, and the Senate itself.

“This is what we expected,” said Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada and Member of Parliament for Saanich–Gulf Islands. “In speaking to the Senate reform bill in the House, I had already said I believed this was an illegitimate way to indirectly do that which could not be done directly.”

May also called on the Minister of Justice to reinstate proper, comprehensive legal reviews of legislation before it is presented to Parliament.

“Today’s decision is yet another reminder that this Prime Minister’s ‘might makes right’ approach to legislation is not working,” said May. “The Conservatives are only wasting Parliament’s time by passing bills that are likely to be over-turned by the courts.”