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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Making your Vote Count-Balancing the Federal Budget-Setting a New Tone in Parliament

7.1 NDP Platform: Fix OttawaSetting a New Tone in Parliament

  • We will foster a new, more cooperative approach in Parliament. Stephen Harper refuses to work constructively with other political parties in the House of Commons, preferring confrontation. New Democrats are committed to making Parliament work better. If the mandate we receive justifies it, we will work with other federalist parties, through informal or appropriate stable arrangements.

7.2 Restricting the Prime Minister’s Power to Avoid Parliament

  • We will introduce a Parliament Act that will prevent the Prime Minister from requesting prorogation of Parliament when a confidence vote is before the House of Commons, and will require a Parliamentary vote before the Prime Minister can seek a lengthy prorogation at other times.

7.3 Making your Vote Count

  • We will propose electoral reform to ensure Parliament reflects the political preferences of Canadians. To this end we will propose a new, more democratic voting system that preserves the connection between MPs and their constituents, while ensuring parties are represented in Parliament in better proportion to how Canadians voted. Your vote will always count.
  • We will propose the abolition of the Senate. All Canadian provincial legislatures have done this many years ago, abolishing their un-elected second chambers to the benefit of democracy.
  • In the meantime, to limit Senate abuses, we will bar failed candidates and party insiders from being appointed to the Senate, and ban senators from fundraising for political parties.

7.4 Building a New Relationship with Civil Society

  • We will recognize and respect the vital role, expertise, and necessary independence of civil society organizations, both at home and abroad, including their right to advocate. We will establish a fair, depoliticized, and transparent process for funding civil society organizations.

7.5 Balancing the Federal Budget

  • We will maintain Canada’s commitment to balance the federal budget within the next 4 years, as per the Department of Finance projections.

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