Newspaper reporting on Government Bills Introduced and Passed in the House of Commons
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Parliament is mainly tasked with the role of making laws; as a result, a major portion of the time taken in parliament is used in the legislative process. Stages involved in the legislative process include the proposal of a bill, its formulation, and eventual drafting. The Canadian legal process is more or less similar to the model used in Britain where the process was clearly defined, and bills underwent distinct stages in the Senate and House of Commons before becoming law (Parliament of Canada, 2015). However, before a Bill is brought into force, democracy requires the process of civic education to take place and ensure citizens understand the implications of the law. Consequently, newspaper reporting plays a significant role in informing people of the bills introduced and passed in the House of Commons. Clearly, the question is of vital importance since it expresses whether the newspaper reporting in the Globe and Mail adequately informs Canadians by equipping them with the capacity to participate in democratic debates. In consequence, this discussion will show how much of the legislation debated and passed in the House of Commons is discussed in the Globe and Mail.
Before a bill is passed into law, several stages in the House of Commons and Senate are brought into play. First is the notice of motion for leave to introduce a bill and to place it on the Order Paper after which the paper is taken through an introduction and first reading (Parliament of Canada, 2015). Afterward, the second reading and referral to the Committee take place after which there is a consideration in the committee. Subsequently, the reporting stage ensues, which is followed by the third reading which is more or less the passage stage (Parliament of Canada, 2015). This phase is followed by the consideration of the Senate and its ultimate passage where the bill comes into force as the law of the land. [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
Though not all the bills necessarily take the same route, three possible avenues could be used in the adoption of legislation. First, a member of parliament introduces a bill after appropriate notice where it is immediately given the first reading. This first stage takes the bill into debate at the second reading where it is passed and sent to the committee that studies it intensively (Parliament of Canada, 2015). The minister may also move for the bill to be referred to the committee for the second studying even before its second reading. Also, a member of parliament could take an alternate avenue and propose a motion, and the committee is instructed to prepare a bill where the bill will be taken through the second reading without amendments or debate by the committee (Library of Congress, 2016). However, regardless of the avenue used to introduce and pass the bill, it is eventually taken through a report stage where it is read and sent to the Senate for assent.
The majority of the research materials used for this analysis is adopted by Parliament of Canada website where all the bills introduced in the First Session of the 42nd Parliament are listed and described in detail. For the listed bills, the government bills are cross-referenced by date with reports made in the Globe and Mail. The library’s e-resources have been majorly instrumental in finding the newspaper reports made in regards to the bill indicating whether the democratic process is given its due regard. Any legislation mentioned in the Globe and Mail is indicated as well to show whether people are involved in the ascension process over the period.
The research process will majorly include huge comparisons of the data collected to come up with a complete picture in a table. Appropriate deductions will be made to express whether the democratic process is working and reasons as to why some of the articles may not have been indicated in the Globe and Mail. Other than that, keywords, as mentioned in the Act, have been used to search in Google thus identifying some of the bills described in the Globe and Mail database, as well as their dates to get the consensus and opinions about the government bills. Also, articles not mentioned are also researched to identify whether they are of relevance or whether people should be informed of their existence and importance to the whole picture.[Click Essay Writer to order your essay]
From the table indicated below, it is clear that the newspapers reports are working towards informing individuals by indicating some of the important issues in their reports. For instance, it explains why liberals are about “to repeal the controversial Bill C-24 that allowed the government to revoke the Canadian citizenship from dual citizens convicted of treason or terrorism” (Zilio, 2016, para. 2). In another example, an article in the Globe and Mail by Appleby and Mahoney (2013) indicates that under reasonable circumstances, people would be allowed to make arrests in a bid to defend themselves. Without the proper understanding of the implications of the bill, people would hardly understand that some of the citizens would be treated unfairly thus creating second-class citizens in the process. However, several legislations have not been mentioned over the period mentioned despite the need for transparency from citizens. A good example is the Bill C-25, C-4, C-16, and C-26, which may not have been transparent and needed to be mentioned within the newspaper reports for people to understand how it would affect their lives. The newspaper reports do not cover the provisions of the Bill C-16 which will influence the being of the people since it adds legal protection for gender identity and expression in the human rights of Canadians; however, the bill is a threat to the freedom of speech of citizens (Peterson, 2016). Failure to mention such a crucial piece of information is wrong and should point out such important pieces of information. [Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]
However, the paper does not mention every precise detail of business conducted within parliament, and one has to complement with information from other databases such as The Hill. As such, it is important to note that if the paper does not report the business of parliament, political reporting in the country would be ineffective in informing people of their civil rights. In fact, it would be unconstitutional since the freedom of speech and knowledge would be suppressed. Thus the activities of parliament would be undemocratic since they do not follow the consensus. From the findings of the table below, it is clear that the newspaper reporting has been playing an active role all along to report the proceedings and the implications in the country. This shows that all the necessary bills passed on or taken through the committee for the first or second reading are also passed on to the citizens for debating. With unlimited resources (time and money) for the research, I would broaden the research and investigate whether other people individual citizens understand the implication of amendments and bills passed over time. This research will move further from indicating whether the information is passed to identifying whether the channel used to pass the news report is effective. By being effective, people will understand the exact implication of the new legislations to their lives.
Appleby, T., & Mahoney, J. (2013, March 11). New citizen’s-arrest law greeted with applause, criticism. The Globe and Mail.
Library of Congress. (2016). National parliaments: Canada.
Parliament of Canada. (2015). Legislative process.
Peterson, J. B. (2016, October 18). Canadian gender-neutral pronoun bill is a warning for Americans. The Hill.
Canada Statute Citator. (2017). Bulletin No. 34 for the period ending January 13, 2017. Toronto, ON: Thomson Reuters Canada.
Zilio, M. (2016, February 23). Liberals to repeal Bill C-24 on citizenship: Immigration minister. The Globe and Mail.
|Bill number||Title||Status||Date/dates of mention in Globe|
|C1||An Act respecting the administration of oaths of office||Commons 1st Reading||December 4, 2015|
|C-10||An Act to amend the Air Canada Public Participation Act and to provide for certain other measures||Royal Assent||May 10, 2016|
|C-25||An Act to amend the Canada Business Corporations Act, the Canada Cooperatives Act, the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act, and the Competition Act||Commons 1stReading||Not mentioned|
|C-33||An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts||Commons 1streading||November 14, 2016|
|C-4||An Act to amend the Canada Labour Code, the Parliamentary Employment and Staff Relations Act, the Public Service Labour Relations Act and the Income Tax Act||Senate 2ndReading||Not mentioned|
|C-26||An Act to amend the Canada Pension Plan, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board Act and the Income Tax Act||Royal Assent||March 11, 2013|
|C-12||An Act to amend the Canadian Forces Members and Veterans Re-establishment and Compensation Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts||1st Reading||March 24, 2016|
|C-16||An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code||Senate 1streading||Not mentioned|
|C-6||An Act to amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act||Senate 2ndreading||April 29, 2016|
|C-11||An Act to amend the Copyright Act (access to copyrighted works or other subject-matter for persons with perceptual disabilities)||Royal Assent||September 10, 2012; February 16, 2013|
|C-14||An Act to amend the Criminal Code and to make related amendments to other Acts (medical assistance in dying)||Royal Assent||September 13; June 20; June 6, June 17, 2016|
|C-242||An Act to amend the Criminal Code (inflicting torture)||Commons 2ndReading|
|C-28||An Act to amend the Criminal Code (victim surcharge)||Commons 1stReading||Not mentioned**|
|C-21||An Act to amend the Customs Act||Commons 1stReading||Not mentioned|
|C-2||An Act to amend the Income Tax Act||Royal Assent||March 24, 2015; November 2, 2016|
|C-27||An Act to amend the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985||Commons 1stReading||November 28, 2016|
|C-24||An Act to amend the Salaries Act and to make a consequential amendment to the Financial Administration Act||Commons 1streading||February 23, 2016|
|C-36||An Act to amend the Statistics Act||Commons 1stReading||Not mentioned|
|C-23||An Act respecting the preclearance of persons and goods in Canada and the United States||Commons 1stReading||June 17, 2016|
|C-18||An Act to amend the Rouge National Urban Park Act, the Parks Canada Agency Act and the Canada National Parks Act||Commons Reported without amendment||September 6, 2012|
Retrieved from: the Globe and Mail (2017) and Reuters (2017).