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The timely and efficient selection and change in the provincial and federal leaderships of political parties in Canada

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The timely and efficient selection and change in the provincial and federal leaderships of political parties in Canada Empty The timely and efficient selection and change in the provincial and federal leaderships of political parties in Canada

Post by Seva Lamberdar Mon Nov 30, 2020 9:07 am

The governments in Canada and India are based on the British parliamentary democratic system which has the federal Govt. headed nationally by the prime minister and the provincial Govt. (in each province / state) headed by the premier in Canadian province and the chief minister in Indian state.  

Nationally, the People’s or the Lower House of Parliament is called the House of Commons in Canada and Lok Sabha in India, which in both cases, comprise Members of Parliament (MPs) elected (voted) directly by people. Similarly, state-wise or provincially, the Provincial Legislatures in Canada and Vidhan Sabhas in India comprise members (Provincial Legislators or MLAs) elected directly by people.  
The prime minister and the federal Govt. stay in power as long as they command a majority support (at least 50% backing from the MPs) in the House of Commons in Canada and Lok Sabha in India. Similarly, the premier in a Canadian province and the chief minister in an Indian state, including the provincial / state Govts headed by them, stay in power as long as they command majority support (at least 50% MLAs backing them) in the provincial assembly in Canada and Vidhan Sabha in India.    

The above briefly describes the close similarities in the functional set-ups for federal and provincial Govts. and their heads (premiers, chief ministers and prime ministers) in Canada and India.  

Let's consider next the process of electing / selecting and continuing as provincial and federal leaders (presidents etc.) of political parties in Canada, which helps in ensuring freshness and vigor at the top of political parties; expands party membership at the basic (grass root) level including creating more interest and participation from public in party's activities and administration; curtails the mushrooming of new and additional political parties while also stopping parties in becoming dynastic (family based), because the outsiders and new party members feel that they will be able to infuse new and progressive ideas in the already existing party, bring in it the real change and difference and might even be able to become the party leader through fair and independent intra-party election process;  and enhances accountability and transparency in the choice of provincial premiers (chief ministers) and national prime ministers, because they happen to belong to the ranks of familiar (officially known, even before the provincial and federal elections) and duly elected / selected leaders of political parties provincially or nationally.  

To this end, the political party members (registered and holding party membership cards) -- instead of self-appointed party bosses or handpicked working committee members -- elect / select the provincial and federal leaders of political parties in Canada at intra-party conventions through run-off voting process (to narrow the field comprising several leadership candidates initially, but most of them dropping out in successive voting rounds after getting less votes), till someone secures at least 50% votes from party members provincially or nationally and is declared the provincial leader or federal leader of the party.  

The new provincial leader of a political party thus, as also the elected member (MLA) in the provincial legislature already or upon getting newly elected to the legislature in a by-election, assumes the role of party's leader in the provincial legislature and he / she automatically becomes the party’s officially designated candidate for the post of premier (or chief minister) in the next provincial election in which he / she runs also to get elected as MLA.

Likewise, the new federal leader of the political party, as also the elected member (MP) in the Parliament (the House of Commons) already or upon getting newly elected to the Parliament in a by-election, assumes the role of party's leader in the national Parliament (House of Commons) and he / she automatically becomes the party’s officially designated candidate for the post of prime minister in the next federal (Parliamentary) election in which he / she runs also to get elected as MP.  

Note, if a political party's leadership becomes vacant in a province or nationally and if the party is required to wait for several months to hold a provincial or national convention to elect the new leader, the party then appoints a new temporary / interim leader provincially or nationally until it is able to hold the convention and elect new leader. This situation would arise usually, requiring an interim party leader suddenly, if the duly elected party leader either leaves the office suddenly and prematurely for personal reasons (e.g. sickness, death or family circumstances etc.), or he / she is made to quit as party leader (voluntarily or forced out) because of lack of support from party members (less than 50% party members backing), especially after he / she fails to lead the party to victory in provincial or federal elections and form the Govt. provincially or nationally under him / her as premier or prime minister.  

As example of the above narrative, without implying any personal preference here to any political party in Canada provincially or nationally, let's consider in the following the Liberal Party of Canada which is one of the three major Canadian political parties, the two others being the Conservative Party and the New Democratic Party both of which use the same type of selection / election process to choose their provincial and federal leaders by party members at conventions as in the case of Liberal Party.  

Appendix (A) and Appendix (B) below, courtesy Wikipedia, list the names of provincial and federal leaders of Liberal Party in Ontario (a Canadian province) and Canada since 1950 (date chosen arbitrarily). In addition, Appendices (A & B) show the names of a number of Liberal Party premiers (chief ministers) of Ontario and prime ministers of Canada since 1950, who earlier had been the duly elected provincial and federal leaders of Liberal Party in Ontario or Canada and were able to lead the Liberal Party to victory in provincial elections or federal elections and form the Govt. (majority or minority Govt.) in Ontario or Canada.    

Interestingly, all the leaders in Appendix A (the provincial leaders of Liberal Party in Ontario since 1950) and Appendix B (the national leaders of Liberal Party in Canada since 1950), except a handful temporary interim leaders, became the Liberal Party's leaders provincially (Ontario) or nationally (Canada) after getting elected at Liberal party conventions in Ontario or Canada. In addition, the Liberal Party's provincial and federal leaders listed here, with the exception of decades apart federal leaders Pierre Trudeau and Justin Trudeau (father-son duo: #3 and #11 in Appendix B) indicate no hereditary or family connection with one another, implying thus that the election / selection of political party leaders by party's general membership at intra-party conventions is the best way to avoid the political party leaderships (leaders, presidents or chairmen of parties) becoming dynastic and family based.

Specifically, to shed light briefly on the above with respect to the selection / election of current provincial Liberal Party leader in Ontario, let's consider Mr. Steven Del Duca (#15) in Appendix (A). Mr. Del Duca became the provincial leader of Liberal Party in Ontario on March 7, 2020, by winning leadership at a provincial party convention in which he received 1258 (58.8%) votes on the first ballot, with his nearest rival Michael Coteau getting 363 (16.9%) votes and coming in second.  Mr. Del Duca took over as Liberal Party leader in Ontario from John Fraser (#14) who earlier had been appointed as interim leader, after the previous Ontario Liberal leader and premier Ms. Kathleen Wynne (#13) lost provincial election and resigned as Liberal leader in Ontario in 2018. Needless to say, Mr. Steven Del Duca is also the Liberal Party's official candidate for the post of premier in the next provincial elections in Ontario.

Finally, to shed light briefly with respect to the selection / election of current federal Liberal Party leader in Canada, let's consider Mr. Justin Trudeau (#11) in Appendix (B). Mr. Justin Trudeau became the federal leader of Liberal Party of Canada on April 14, 2013 in a Canada-wide party convention while receiving 81389 (78.8%) votes on the first ballot, with his nearest rival Joyce Murray receiving 12148 (11.8%) votes and coming in second. Mr. Justin Trudeau -- also the Prime Minister of Canada currently (after winning the parliamentary elections as Liberal Party leader since 2015) -- had assumed the Liberal Party's national leadership from interim leader Bob Rae (#10) who had been appointed earlier as the temporary leader when the previous federal Liberal Party leader Michael Ignatieff (#9) resigned after failing to lead his party to victory in 2011 federal / parliamentary elections and unable to form the national Govt.

…….  

APPENDIX (A): Leaders of the Ontario provincial wing of Liberal party since 1950   (including a number of Ontario Premiers or Chief Ministers)      

(1) Walter Thomson (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature): 1950–1954)
(2) Farquhar Oliver (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1954–1958; second time)    
(3) John Wintermeyer (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1958–1964)    
(4) Andy Thompson (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1964–1966)    
(5) Robert Nixon (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1967–1976)    
(6) Stuart Smith (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1976–1982)    
(7) David Peterson (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1982–1990) ....  (Ont. premier / chief minister: 1985 - 1990)    
(Cool Robert Nixon (interim) (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1990–1991)    
(9) Murray Elston (interim) (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1991)    
(10) Jim Bradley (interim) (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1991 - 1992)    
(11) Lyn McLeod (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1992 - 1996)    
(12) Dalton McGuinty (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):1996 - 2013) .....(Ont. premier / chief minister: 2003 - 2013)    
(13) Kathleen Wynne (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):2013 - 2018) .... (Ont. premier / chief minister: 2013 - 2018)    
(14) John Fraser (interim) (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):2018 - 2020)    
(15) Steven Del Duca (Leader of Liberal party in Ontario (provincial legislature):2020 – present)    

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APPENDIX (B): Leaders of the Liberal Party of Canada since 1950    (including a number of Prime Ministers of Canada)      

(1) Louis St. Laurent   (Federal Liberal leader: 1948 - 1958) .. (Prime Minister of Canada: 1948 - 1957)    
(2) Lester Pearson    (Federal Liberal leader: 1958 - 1968) .. (Prime Minister of Canada: 1963 -1968)    
(3) Pierre E. Trudeau (Federal Liberal leader: 1968 - 1984) .. (Prime Minister of Canada: 1968 -1979; 1980 - 1984)    
(4) John Turner (Federal Liberal leader: 1984 - 1990) .. (Prime Minister of Canada: 1984 - 1984)    
(5) Jean Chretien (Federal Liberal leader: 1990 - 2003) .. (Prime Minister of Canada: 1993 - 2003)    
(6) Paul Martin (Federal Liberal leader: 2003 - 2006) ..(Prime Minister of Canada: 2003 - 2006) (7) Bill Graham (interim) (Federal Liberal leader: 2006 - 2006)    
(Cool Stephane Dion (Federal Liberal leader: 2006 - 2008)    
(9) Michael Ignatieff (Federal Liberal leader: 2008 - 2011)    
(10) Bob Rae (interim) (Federal Liberal leader: 2011 - 2013)  
 (11) Justin Trudeau (Federal Liberal leader: 2013 - present) ... (Prime Minister of Canada: 2015 - present)
Seva Lamberdar
Seva Lamberdar

Posts : 6471
Join date : 2012-11-29

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