Canada’s house of sober second thought has been dogged by scandal, some would say for most of its existence. Senators abusing taxpayer money and generally behaving badly isn’t something new. The Conservative Party has been attempting to avoid the embarrassment of three of its more recent appointments to the Senate, Mike Duffy being the most prominent example. Mr. Duffy is currently on trial, facing charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust. The political dilemma for the currently government is the extent to which they knew about what Mr. Duffy was doing, and whether or not they were complicit in his activities.
Senate reform has been attempted in the past, but has proved difficult. The amending formula for the Canadian Constitution requires a great deal of consensus in order to make real change. Political parties have often avoided the issue, as it isn’t a real vote winner on Election Day. However, it seems with the recent scandal plagued members of the upper chamber, the public at large would like to see something done about the Senate. To see where all the major parties stand on the issue of the Senate, visit the issue page.