Michael Chong, MP for Wellington-Halton Hills

The Reform Act

On December 3, 2013, Michael Chong MP introduced the Reform Act. The Reform Act is an effort to strengthen Canada’s democratic institutions by restoring the role of elected Members of Parliament in the House of Commons. At that time, Michael indicated that he was open to feedback and amendments.

Since its introduction, the Reform Act has generated a substantial amount of interest and discussion. Over the last few months Michael has received input from colleagues on both sides of the aisle and Canadians across the country.

Over the past several months, Michael consulted widely with colleagues from all parties. This constructive dialogue revealed two critiques of the bill.

In response to this constructive criticism, Michael is proposing two changes be made to the bill in committee. First, that the parts of the bill concerning party nominations be substituted with a paragraph that replaces the party leader with a person designated by each registered political party in 67(4)(c) of the Canada Elections Act. Second, that the bill be amended to require that each House of Commons caucus, after every general election, as its first item of business and in a recorded manner, vote on each of the four caucus rules: The review and removal of the party leader, the election of the interim leader, the election and review of the caucus chair and the expulsion and re-admission of caucus members.


Chong Proposes Two Changes to Strengthen Reform Act

Chong calls on the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, which will study the bill if passed at Second Reading, to consider and adopt these changes by amending the bill

FERGUS – Michael Chong, M.P. for Wellington-Halton Hills, today proposed two changes to the Reform Act, 2014 in response to consultations held over the summer and to build support for the bill at its first vote, scheduled for Wednesday, September 24th, 2014.

Over the past several months, Michael consulted widely with colleagues from all parties. This constructive dialogue revealed two critiques of the bill. The first is that the nomination process set out in the bill is too prescriptive, making it difficult to meet diversity targets for party candidates or impeding parties from establishing uniform rules across the country for party nominations. The second is that the bill imposes a one-size-fits-all solution on all party caucuses, overlooking the unique circumstance of each caucus and preventing flexibility to deal with special situations.

In response to this constructive criticism, Michael is proposing two changes be made to the bill in committee. First, that the parts of the bill concerning party nominations be substituted with a paragraph that replaces the party leader with a person designated by each registered political party in 67(4)(c) of the Canada Elections Act. Second, that the bill be amended to require that each House of Commons caucus, after every general election, as its first item of business and in a recorded manner, vote on each of the four caucus rules: The review and removal of the party leader, the election of the interim leader, the election and review of the caucus chair and the expulsion and re-admission of caucus members.

“When the Reform Act was introduced last December, I welcomed suggestions to improve the bill. The changes announced today result from constructive dialogue with my colleagues. They will strengthen the bill by providing flexibility for each party while upholding the principles of the bill,” Chong said. “It’s my hope these changes will secure the support necessary for the bill to become law. The passage of this bill will provide MPs a clear voice and a clear choice on the rules parties can adopt to empower MPs to represent their constituents in Ottawa.”

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