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The Senate does not have the power to block its abolition

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Photo: flickr/ Tony Webster

For more information on the abolition of the Canadian Senate, please read Karl Nerenberg's piece "Would abolishing the Senate be impossible? Maybe not."

If you were concerned that the Senate itself would, constitutionally, have to consent to its own abolition, put your mind to rest.

Here is what the Canadian Constitution says about that.

Section 47 of the Constitution Act, 1982 states:

"An amendment to the Constitution of Canada… may be made without a resolution of the Senate authorizing the issue of the proclamation if, within one hundred and eighty days after the adoption by the House of Commons of a resolution authorizing its issue, the Senate has not adopted such a resolution; and if, at any time after the expiration of that period, the House of Commons again adopts the resolution."

Put simply, the Senate's approval is not constitutionally required in order for Canada to abolish the Senate.

Every single provincial legislature, and the federal House of Commons, would, on the other hand, have to approve Senate abolition.

That would be a steep hill to climb.

But it would not be an utterly impossible hill.

Just thought you might like to know. Some commentators insist on saying the Senate, itself, would have to consent to its own abolition. 

They are wrong, and should brush up on their constitutional law. 


For more information on the abolition of the Canadian Senate, please read Karl Nerenberg's piece "Would abolishing the Senate be impossible? Maybe not."

Photo: flickr/ Tony Webster

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