New "independent" Senators could be emboldened to test out their new levels of "independence" -- particularly in the form of pushing back even harder on legislation passed by the House. Indeed, some people may even hope that happens. And if it does, it will be undermining the will of the House -- and by extension, Canadians.
There's not much time left for applications -- the August 4th deadline is not far off, and you need to get letters of recommendation together, as well as the usual paperwork -- but I urge you to think hard about who YOU think would make a great addition to the Senate and get applications in ahead of the deadline.
My friend Chuck wants to kill himself. He is hoping if Bill C-14 does not pass in the Senate by June 6th, he will be able to legally commit suicide with the help of a doctor, thereby ending his constant, debilitating and painful battle with mental illness. Chuck is part of a group of patients who, despite being included in the Supreme Court of Canada's ground-breaking decision in Carter vs. Canada, have been cut out of the Liberal's Bill C-14. Here's why.
Bill C-14 reflects a reasonable, balanced approach to the criminal law dimensions of medical assistance in dying, where Parliament's jurisdiction primarily lies. Medical assistance in dying is different from all other forms of medical care in that, in the absence of an exemption, it is otherwise criminal conduct of the most serious nature. Bill C-14 also includes a critical set of safeguards that are designed to give Canadians confidence that life will only be ended where that is the genuine and firm wish of the person.
After 83 days in power for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the House of Commons has resumed sitting. Ottawa will be back in full swing with hundreds of new staffers settling into their new roles. As ministers return to the question period briefed up, staffed up and, ideally, rested up from the holiday, we will see a more comfortable team working to deliver on the government priorities set out in their platform and Speech from the Throne: growing the economy for the middle class, providing Canadians with open and transparent government and fighting climate change.
The CBC is facing significant challenges. There is the continued rise of the Internet and digital services like Netflix that are changing the broadcasting landscape. More and more content is consumed online. There are also long-standing challenges of competing against the U.S. entertainment giant to our south. With these challenges in mind, here is what I propose. It is important to have a strong and vibrant CBC, to tell our stories, to entertain and inform us as Canadians.
Consider me one of the millions of Canadians offended by the Senate spending scandal. But it's not for the reason you might think. The auditor general spent around $23 million on this investigation, and found less than $1 million in questionable expenses -- out of $180 million worth of expenses investigated. So we, the ever-patient, ever-indulgent taxpayers, spent $23 million to find out that 0.5 per cent of Senate expenses were questionable. Should we be outraged? Yes, by the dollar cost of the investigation and by the cost to the reputation of Canada's upper house.