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Wilson-Raybould is planning a ‘constitutional reform caucus’ in Parliament — and Scheer may endorse it

The newly re-elected Member of Parliament for Vancouver-Granville, Jody Wilson-Raybould — the only non-partisan person elected to the 43rd Parliament — wants to bring constitutional and electoral reform to Canada. To do it, a source tells The Chronicle, she is planning to launch a high-profile non-partisan caucus, open to all Members of Parliament, and tasked with the objective of democratizing Canada.

Wilson-Raybould is expected to push for election reforms and a ‘democratization of the Senate’.  Some suspect she may even push for the direct election of the Governor-General and Province-wide elections to select members of the Senate on a fixed calendar.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was unable to secure a majority in the House of Commons, raising the unlikely prospect that legislative initiatives might be advanced without the endorsement of his government — putting him in a tenuous position.  The leaders of the three largest opposition parties are on record in support of electoral reforms, broadly.

In the Canadian lexicon, a ‘parliamentary caucus’ usually refers to a party’s collective membership in the elected House of Commons and the appointed Senate.  Wilson-Raybould’s use of the term, in a non-partisan context and organized around a specific objective, could be a forum through which the Independent member can bring opposition parties together in advancing legislation that is unendorsed by the governing Liberal Party.

The source imagines that the “Constitutional Reform Caucus” is likely to evolve into a think tank (he suggests that it would be “the Brookings Institution of Canada”), funded by charitable contributions from Canadians, and perhaps even led by former cabinet Minister Jane Philpott.

Phillpot and Wilson-Raybould already have enormous fundraising prowess — and support for democratic reforms cuts across partisan lines.  Observers say that they could easily fundraise an endowment that could support the ongoing operations of an Ottawa-based think tank.

Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer may endorse the caucus — and, word has it, that he’d even like to co-Chair it, with Wilson-Raybould.  Imagine the optics: the Conservative Party leader working with the Leader-in-Waiting of the Liberal Party, advancing transformational reform legislation that decentralizes power and vests it more firmly in the electorate.

The optics alone could be enough to destabilize a Trudeauvian government.

Opposition leader Andrew Scheer would like to work with Wilson-Raybould — who is widely seen as the Liberal Party’s Leader-in-Waiting — during the 43rd Parliament.

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