Academic journal article Canadian Parliamentary Review

House of Commons

Academic journal article Canadian Parliamentary Review

House of Commons

Article excerpt

For several months, rumours of a fall 2008 election swirled. The parties had tried to find some common ground before Parliament was to resume on September 15, but to no avail. So on September 7, 2008, Stephen Harper went to Governor General Michaelle Jean's residence to ask her to dissolve Parliament. Calling the general election cancelled 3 by elections scheduled for September 8 and 1 for September 22, and caused 35 bills to die on the Order Paper. In total, 33 MPs chose not to run for re election.

On election day, October 14, 2008, according to preliminary results supplied by Elections Canada, Canadians elected a minority Conservative government with 143 MPs-16 more than it had when Parliament was dissolved. The Liberals won 77 seats. The NDP won 7 more seats for a total of 37, and the Bloc Quebecois gained 1 for a total of 49. Two Independent candidates were elected as well.

Committees

A few committees held meetings in August, many of which were controversial. Because of the minority government, the opposition party MPs were able to control the proceedings of each committee.

The Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics held meetings during the second week of August (August 11 to 14) on the Conservative Party of Canada's 2006 election campaign expenses. …

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