As mentioned in the Canada’s Government post, Canada has three levels of government: federal, provincial and municipal. Each level of government is responsible for certain duties and collecting certain type of taxes. However, each level of government is then broken down into three branches: executive, legislative, and judiciary.
The executive peoples of each level of government have the power to administer country, province, or city, and to carry out (execute) laws. At the federal level, the executives are as follows:
- Governor General
- Prime Minister
- Cabinet Members (body of ministers of the Crown)
At the provincials and municipal level, they have corresponding positions.
The legislate peoples of each level of government make, change, or repel law. At the federal level, the legislative people are as follows:
- Governor General
- House of Commons
At the provincial and municipal level, they have corresponding positions.
The judiciary people of each level of government interpret the meaning and intent of laws and constitution. The judiciary people include:
- Supreme Court of Canada & Federal Judges
- Provincials level has corresponding positions
- No judiciary at the Municipal level
The basis for this division of power laws is in the constitution, which itself is composed of four parts:
- The Constitution Act of 1867 (formerly known as the British North America Act) is the first of the four parts. This constitution describes the authority, parts, and function of Parliament and the provincial legislatures.
- The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom is the second part. This document encloses the rights and freedoms all Canadians and landed immigrants (permanent residents) are entitled to have.
- The amending formula, which sets out the ways the constitution can be changed, is the 3rd part of the constitution. The following must be met for the constitution to be changed:
– 7/50 formula
– Approval of Senate, House of Commons, and at least 2/3 of legislature assemblies (approximately 7).
– Seven provincial assemblies must make up at least 50% of total population of Canada. Quebec is always the deciding vote because of its large population.
Some amendments (changes) require unanimous support from the Senate, House of Commons, and all legislative assemblies. Some of these amendments include:
- Office of Queen, Governor General, Lieutenant Governor
- Changes to number of members in the House of Commons
- Changes to use of French/English languages
- Compositions of Supreme Court
- This amendment formula
4. The last, but not least part of the constitution are traditions (unwritten) stretching back to the Magna Carta 1215 and beyond, which includes:
- Office of Prime Minister
- Political parties
- Election Acts
All these four components is the basis for the division of power for the executive, legislative, and judiciary branches of each level of government.