Parliament and Cabinet
From: Laws of Government, 2/e
The Governor General generally acts only on the advice of the prime minister or Cabinet. Meanwhile, as is explored in greater detail below, departments and agencies of the public administration of Canada report to ministers. Second, these same ministers are accountable to Parliament, both individually and collectively as members of Cabinet. In this fashion, parliamentarians have ultimate responsibility for the governance of the country, through the proxy of ministers. In this chapter, we explore both of these aspects of responsible government. We begin by examining Cabinet’s role in executive governance. We then highlight Parliament’s function in overseeing that executive.
Craig Forcese is an Associate Professor of Law, Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa. There, he teaches administrative law, public international law, and national security law and runs the annual foreign policy practicum. Much of his present research and writing relates to democratic accountability, national security, and international law. Prior to joining the law school faculty, he practiced law with the Washington D.C. office of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP, specializing in international trade law. Craig has law degrees from the University of Ottawa and Yale University, a B.A. from McGill, and an M.A. in international affairs from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs, Carleton University. He is a member of the bars of Ontario, New York and the District of Columbia. He is author of National Security Law (Irwin Law, 2008) and co-author of The Laws of Government, Second Edition (Irwin Law 2010) and International Law: Doctrine, Practice and Theory (Irwin Law, 2007).
Aaron Freeman is a Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of the Premier of Ontario. For 10 years, he wrote a regular column in The Hill Times, Canada's parliamentary newspaper, and his work often appeared in Canada's leading newspapers and publications. He has provided policy and communications advice to organizations in the health, consumer, environmental, democratic reform, human rights, and international development sectors. Aaron is a part-time faculty member of the University of Ottawa's Faculty of Law, where he has taught the law of Canadian democracy. He is a graduate of McGill University and the University of Ottawa's Faculty of Law, where he was awarded the Gowling Lafleur Henderson Prize for International Trade Law.