41st Canadian Parliament
|41st Parliament of Canada|
|June 2, 2011 – present|
|Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper
February 6, 2006 – present
|Leader of the
|Hon. Thomas Mulcair
March 24, 2012 – present
August 23, 2011 – March 23, 2012
|Hon. Jack Layton
May 2, 2011 – August 22, 2011
|Party standings in the Commons|
|Opposition||New Democratic Party|
|Third Party||Liberal Party|
|Fourth Party||Bloc Québécois*|
|Fifth Party||Green Party*|
|* Party does not hold official party status.|
|House of Commons|
Seating arrangements of the House of Commons
|Speaker of the
|Hon. Andrew Scheer
June 2, 2011 – present
|Hon. Peter Van Loan
May 18, 2011 – present
April 20, 2012 – present
October 14, 2011 – April 19, 2012
|Hon. Thomas Mulcair
May 26, 2011 – October 14, 2011
Seating arrangements of the Senate
|Speaker of the
|Hon. Noël A. Kinsella
February 8, 2006 – present
|Hon. Marjory LeBreton
February 6, 2006 – present
|Hon. Jim Cowan
November 3, 2008 – present
June 2, 2011 – present
|28th Canadian Ministry
Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper
February 6, 2006 – present
The 41st Canadian Parliament is the current Parliament of Canada, with the membership of its House of Commons having been determined by the results of the 2011 federal election held on May 2, 2011. Parliament convened on June 2, 2011, with the election of Andrew Scheer as Speaker, followed the next day with the Speech from the Throne.
Party standings 
|This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of
The party standings as of the election, and as of May 14, 2013, are as follows:
|Affiliation||House Members||Senate Members|
May 14, 2013
May 17, 2013
|Independent Progressive Conservative||0||0||0||1|
Major bills and motions 
In the parliament's first session, the House of Commons met for 14 days in June, between the end of election and before the summer recess, and 6 bills were given royal assent, all on June 26. The Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act (Bill C-6) was adopted despite 58 hours of continuous debate. The 2011 Canadian federal budget was quickly passed and while only the Conservatives voted in favour of the appropriation acts, the Bloc Québécois and Green Party joined them in voting in favour of the budget implementation bill Supporting Vulnerable Seniors and Strengthening Canada's Economy Act (Bill C-3) which enacted several spending measures promised in the budget, such as increasing the Guaranteed Income Supplements for seniors. The Fair and Efficient Criminal Trials Act (Bill C-2) authorizing federal judges to hear all pretrial motions at once during mega-trials, was introduced on June 13 and was supported by the Conservative, New Democratic and Liberal parties.
When the parliament re-convened in September, the Minister of Justice introduced the Safe Streets and Communities Act (Bill C-10), an omnibus bill of nine separate measures. Among the measures include replacing the pardon system with 'record suspensions', mandatory minimum sentences and/or penalties for certain drug and sexual offences, increasing prison sentences for marijuana offences, making it illegal to make sexually explicit information available to a child, reducing the ability of judges to sentence certain offenders to house arrest, allowing immigration officers to deny work permits to foreigners who are at risk of being sexually exploited, and enabling Canadians to sue state sponsors of terrorism for losses due to an act of terrorism. The bill was reviewed by the 'House Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights' throughout October and November, chaired by Oxford MP Dave MacKenzie and passed by the House of Commons on December 5, 2011, on a 157 to 127 vote, with only the Conservative Party voting in favour. The senate made six amendments and it was given royal assent on March 13, 2012.
On September 29 the Minister of Industry introduced the Copyright Modernization Act (Bill C-11) — the same bill that was introduced in the 3rd session of the previous parliament and referred to the 'Legislative Committee on Bill C-32'. The bill is first major copyright reform since 1997 and brings Canadian copyright laws in line with modern digital rights management The act enables copyright holders to sue operaters of peer-to-peer file sharing sites, makes circumventing technological protection measures (e.g. digital locks, encryption, etc.) illegal except when in the public interest, makes it illegal to remove rights management information (e.g. digital watermarks), extends moral rights for performers, makes legal the practise of copying for the purpose of backup, format shifting (CD to mp3), time shifting (recording to watch later), and expands fair dealing to include use in education, parody, and satire. However, the proposed law was criticized as "irredeemably flawed" due to a contradiction between consumer rights and digital locks, American interference, a requirement for students to destroy copyrighted digital content after a course ends, and makes notice and notice mandatory for all ISPs, including disclosing the identity and activity of customers suspected of copyright infringement. The bill finally passed the House of Commons on June 18 and given royal assent on June 29.
The Minister of Agriculture introduced the Marketing Freedom for Grain Farmers Act (Bill C-18) which repealed the Canadian Wheat Board Act, eliminating the requirement for farmers to sell wheat and barley produce to the Canadian Wheat Board. The new act also appoints a new board of directors that must either privatize or dismantle the wheat board. The bill was studied by the 'Legislative Committee on Bill C-18' chaired by Wetaskiwin MP Blaine Calkins between October 31 and November 4. The bill was subject to a lawsuit by the wheat board's existing board of directors claiming that the government cannot change the mandate of the wheat board without the consent of its members and a counter-suit which sought to prevent the board of directors from using wheat board revenue for legal action against the government. A federal trial court decided that for the bill to be legal the government required the consent of the affected farmers, via a vote or plebiscite, as provided for in the 1998 Canadian Wheat Board Act, although that case is in appeal as of December 2011[update]. Nevertheless, on November 28, the bill was passed by the House of Commons, with only the Conservative Party voting in favour. The bill was reviewed by the Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry in December and passed by the Senate on December 15, 2011. Despite the ruling of the judicial branch, Governor General David Johnston gave royal assent to the bill on the same day.
The Minister of Public Safety introduced the Ending the Long-gun Registry Act (Bill C-19) which amends the Criminal Code of Canada and the Firearms Act to remove the requirement to register firearms that are neither prohibited nor restricted and requires that the existing records relating to non-restricted firearms in the Canadian Firearms Registry be destroyed. The registration of long guns had been a divisive issue since its inception in 1995. The bill was introduce on October 25 and reviewed by the 'House Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security' throughout November, chaired by Crowfoot MP Kevin Sorenson. With no amendments made to the bill in committee, it was passed on February 15 by the House of Commons on a 159 to 130 vote, with only two opposition MPs voting in favour. The bill was passed by the senate on April 5, 2012, and given royal assent the next day.
The Minister of Public Safety also introduced the Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act (Bill C-30) which proposed to amend the Criminal Code of Canada to grant law enforcement agencies new powers, such as online surveillance or warrantless wiretapping, to combat criminal activity on the internet. The bill has met with criticism from privacy groups, opposition MPs and the public over charges that the law would infringe on the privacy rights of Canadian citizens. Toews responded to the opposition by stating, addressing a Liberal MP, "He can either stand with us or stand with the child pornographers" which was received negatively. The bill was introduced on February 14, 2012, and declared dead a year later when the Response to the Supreme Court of Canada Decision in R. v. Tse Act (Bill C-55) was introduced which also makes provisions for online surveillance and warrantless wiretapping.
Senate leader Majorly LeBreton introduced the Safe Food for Canadians Act (Bill S-11) which was part of a response to tainted meat being discovered coming from the XL Foods processing plant in September 2012. The act made numerous changes to the food regulatory system, including requiring better tracking of products, providing food inspectors more authority and increasing penalties for violations.
The Minister of Justice introduced the Not Criminally Responsible Reform Act (Bill C-54) on February 8, 2013. The legislation proposes to create a "high risk" designation for people found guilty of a crime but not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder and enshrines in law that the safety of the public is paramount in deciding whether and how such a person can re-enter society.
Omnibus bills 
On April 26, 2012, the Minister of Finance introduced the Jobs, Growth and Long-term Prosperity Act (Bill C-38), an omnibus bill that amends over 50 laws. The bill makes numerous amendments to the environmental assessment process, including increasing the threshold for which reviews are required, limiting the scope of the reviews, shortening review times, moving environmental reviews of pipeline projects to the National Energy Board and nuclear projects to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, enabling the delegation of reviews to provincial agencies, limiting reviews of fish habitats to only the fish used for commercial, recreation or first nations purposes, making reviews of migratory birds optional (at the discretion of cabinet), and limits public participation to only those individuals who directly impacted by a proposal or are specifically sought by the review agency for their specialized knowledge. The omnibus bill would also repeal the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act and the Fair Wages and Hours of Labour Act, eliminates the National Council of Welfare, and the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development, the regulatory agency Assisted Human Reproduction Canada, the Public Appointments Commission, the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy, and the Canadian Artists and Producers Professional Relations Tribunal, as well as eliminates the office of the inspector general at the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and certain reviews by Auditor General. It creates a new department called Shared Services Canada and replaces the Employment Insurance Board of Referees with the Social Security Tribunal. The bill also provides for moving the Old Age Security pension threshold from 65 to 67 years old, and provides for the deprecation of the penny and social insurance number cards. The government was criticized for limiting debate on the 420-page bill to only 7 days. The bill was passed by the House of Commons on June 18 and the Senate on June 29 and given royal assent on the same day.
The second omnibus bill was the Jobs and Growth Act (C-45), introduced on October 18, 2012, by the Minister of Finance and adopted on December 14. The 443-page bill makes 65 amendments to 24 laws. Among the financial measures in the bill were the elimination of the Overseas Employment Tax Credit and corporate tax credits for mining exploration and development; moving the Atlantic Investment Tax Credit away from oil, gas, and mining towards electricity generation; making provisions for Pooled Registered Pension Plans; various amendments to Registered Disability Savings Plans, Retirement Compensation Arrangements, Employees Profit Sharing Plans, and thin capitalisation rules; reducing the Scientific Research and Experimental Development Tax Credit Program; adding a requirement that employers report as part of an employee's income any contributions to a group sickness or accident insurance plan; increasing the salaries of federal judges and making the income of the Governor General subject to income taxes. Non-financial measures added into the bill included a renaming of the Navigable Waters Protection Act to Navigation Protection Act and reduces its scope from all navigable waters to only 159 rivers and lakes, plus three oceans; creates the Bridge to Strengthen Trade Act which exempts a proposed new bridge between Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan from the Environmental Assessment Act, Fisheries Act, and the new Navigation Protection Act; eliminates the Merchant Seamen Compensation Board, the Hazardous Materials Information Review Commission, and the Canada Employment Insurance Financing Board. The portion of the bill that dealt with political pensions was taken out after first reading and re-introduced as the Pension Reform Act (Bill C-46)
Private member bills 
As of December 2012, six private member bills had received royal assent. Geoff Regan's Purple Day Act (Bill C-278) designates March 26 as Purple Day. John Carmichael's National Flag of Canada Act (Bill C-288) encourages the display of flag of Canada on multiple-residence buildings and gated communities. Joy Smith's An Act to amend the Criminal Code (trafficking in persons) (Bill C-310) enables the prosecution of Canadians who engage in human trafficking while outside Canada. Dan Albas's An Act to amend the Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act (interprovincial importation of wine for personal use) (Bill C-311) allows Canadians to import wine for personal use across provincial borders. Harold Albrecht's Federal Framework for Suicide Prevention Act (Bill C-300) requires the federal government to operate a program for suicide prevention. Patricia Davidson's An Act to amend the Food and Drugs Act (non-corrective contact lenses) (Bill C-313) makes non-corrective contact lenses subject to the Food and Drugs Act.
Cabinet and senate appointments 
With the 28th Canadian Ministry continuing, Harper largely kept the same cabinet as before the election but had lost five ministers to retirement or defeat. In the May 18 cabinet shuffle he promoted Steven Blaney, Ed Fast, Joe Oliver, Peter Penashue to ministerial positions, as well as promoting Denis Lebel and Julian Fantino from Minister of State roles to ministerial positions. He also promoted Bernard Valcourt, Tim Uppal, Alice Wong, Bal Gosal, and Maxime Bernier to Minister of State roles, replacing the two who had been promoted to Minister, one who had been defeated in the election, and Rob Merrifield and Rob Moore who were demoted. Upon the retirement of Bev Oda in July 2012, Harper promoted Julian Fantino to replace her as Minister for International Cooperation, with Bernard Valcourt adding Fantino's former Associate Minister post to his Minister of State role.
Senate appointments 
On May 18, 2011, two weeks after the election, Prime-Minister Harper made appointments to the Senate. To the Senate Harper appointed Fabian Manning, Larry Smith, and Josée Verner, all of whom were defeated Conservative Party candidates in the general election. Manning and Smith had resigned from the Senate to run in the election and they became the first Senators to be reappointed to the Senate since John Carling in April 1896.
On January 6, 2012, Harper appointed seven new Senators in his second batch of appointments in the 41st Parliament, all Conservative Party members. The appointments went to Alberta Senator-in-waiting Betty Unger, former police chief in the city of Ottawa Vernon White, former MP Norman Doyle, the 2011 Conservative Party nominee in Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot Jean-Guy Dagenais, as well as JoAnne Buth, Ghislain Maltais, and Asha Seth.
- For full lists of members of the 41st Parliament of Canada, see List of House members of the 41st Parliament of Canada and List of senators in the 41st Parliament of Canada.
- Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development
- Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
- Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food
- Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage
- Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration
- Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development
- Standing Committee on Finance
- Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans
- Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development
- Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates
- Standing Committee on Health
- Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities
- Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology
- Standing Committee on International Trade
- Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights
- Standing Committee on National Defence
- Standing Committee on Natural Resources
- Standing Committee on Official Languages
- Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs
- Standing Committee on Public Accounts
- Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security
- Standing Committee on Status of Women
- Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities
- Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs
- Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples
- Standing Committee on Agriculture and Forestry
- Standing Committee on Banking, Trade and Commerce
- Standing Committee on Conflict of Interest for Senators
- Standing Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources
- Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans
- Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade
- Standing Committee on Human Rights
- Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration
- Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs
- Standing Committee on National Finance
- Standing Committee on National Security and Defence
- Standing Committee on Official Languages
- Standing Committee on Rules, Procedures and the Rights of Parliament
- Selection Committee
- Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology
- Standing Committee on Transport and Communications
Joint Committees 
- Standing Joint Committee on the Library of Parliament
- Standing Joint Committee on Scrutiny of Regulations
The current and former officers of Parliament during the 41st Parliament are set out below.
- Speaker of the Canadian Senate: Hon. Noël Kinsella, Conservative Senator for New Brunswick.
- Speaker of the Canadian House of Commons: Hon. Andrew Scheer, Conservative member for Regina—Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan
Other Chair occupants 
- Speaker pro tempore of the Canadian Senate: Hon. Donald H. Oliver, Conservative Senator for Nova Scotia
House of Commons
- House of Commons Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole:
- Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole: Barry Devolin, Conservative member for Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, Ontario
- Assistant Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole: Bruce Stanton, Conservative member for Simcoe North, Ontario
- Prime Minister of Canada: Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper (Conservative)
- Leader of the Opposition (NDP):
- Liberal Party of Canada:
- Bloc Québécois leader:
- Green Party of Canada leader: Elizabeth May
Floor leaders 
- Leader of the Government in the Senate: Hon. Marjory LeBreton
- Leader of the Opposition in the Senate: Hon. Jim Cowan
House of Commons
- Government House Leader: Hon. Peter Van Loan
- Opposition House Leader:
- Liberal House Leader:
- Bloc Québécois House Leader: Louis Plamondon (acting)
- Government Whip in the Senate: Hon. Elizabeth Marshall
- Deputy Government Whip in the Senate: Hon. Yonah Martin
- Opposition Whip in the Senate: Hon. Jim Munson
- Deputy Opposition Whip in the Senate: Hon. Libbe Hubley
House of Commons
- Chief Government Whip: Hon. Gordon O'Connor
- Deputy Government Whip: Harold Albrecht
- Official Opposition Whip:
- Liberal Whip: Judy Foote
Shadow cabinets 
- Official Opposition Shadow Cabinet of the 41st Parliament of Canada
- Liberal Shadow Cabinet of the 41st Parliament of Canada
- Bloc Québécois Shadow Cabinet of the 41st Parliament of Canada
|Bourassa||2013||Denis Coderre||Liberal||TBD||Resigned to run for Mayor of Montreal.|
|Labrador||May 13, 2013||Peter Penashue||Conservative||Yvonne Jones||Liberal||Resigned to run again in a by-election following election spending concerns.||No|
|Victoria||November 26, 2012||Denise Savoie||NDP||Murray Rankin||NDP||Resignation due to illness||Yes|
|Durham||November 26, 2012||Bev Oda||Conservative||Erin O'Toole||Conservative||Resignation||Yes|
|Calgary Centre||November 26, 2012||Lee Richardson||Conservative||Joan Crockatt||Conservative||Resignation||Yes|
|Toronto—Danforth||March 19, 2012||Jack Layton||NDP||Craig Scott||NDP||Death (cancer)||Yes|
- Members of the Canadian Senate are appointed by the Governor General on the advice of the Prime Minister and remain senators until the age of 75, even if the House of Commons has been dissolved or an election has been called.
- "Standings in the Senate". The Senate of Canada. Retrieved February 7, 2013.
- Elaine McCoy, Lowell Murray
- Bruce Hyer — "Member of Parliament Profile: Bruce Hyer". Parliament of Canada. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- Anne Cools, Jean-Claude Rivest.
- Patrick Brazeau, Anne Cools, Mike Duffy Mac Harb, Jean-Claude Rivest, Pamela Wallin.
- Peter Goldring — "Member of Parliament Profile: Peter Goldring". Parliament of Canada. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- "Elaine McCoy
- "Canada Post back-to-work bill clears House". CBC News. June 25, 2011. Retrieved November 6, 2011.
- "Federal budget passes House of Commons vote". CBC News. June 13, 2011. Retrieved November 6, 2011.
- Leblanc, Daniel; Jane Taber (June 13, 2011). "Opposition support for Tory trial bill is an exception". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved July 29, 2011.
- Chase, Steven (September 20, 2011). "Weighty Tory crime bill targets drugs, sex offenders, 'out-of-control' youth". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved September 22, 2011.
- Chase, Steven (September 20, 2011). "Sweeping Conservative crime bill only 'the beginning'". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved September 22, 2011.
- Chase, Steven (September 29, 2011). "Law cracks down on digital piracy in Canada". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved September 30, 2011.
- Chung, Emily; Janyce McGregor (September 29, 2011). "Tories want to wrap copyright law by Christmas". CBC News. Retrieved September 30, 2011.
- "Goodmans Update: Entertainment and Communications Law". Goodmans LLP. July 3, 2012. Retrieved July 21, 2012.
- Winseck, Dwayne (October 25, 2011). "Take notice of the slippery slopes in the Copyright Modernization Act". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved October 30, 2011.
- "'Sky will be the limit,' Tories say in tabling wheat-board overhaul". The Globe and Mail. October 18, 2011. Retrieved October 30, 2011.
- Chase, Steven; Paul Waldie (October 26, 2011). "Canadian Wheat Board sues Tories over plan to dismantle monopoly". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved October 30, 2011.
- Chase, Steven (October 27, 2011). "Farmers slap Canadian Wheat Board with countersuit". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved October 30, 2011.
- Waldie, Paul (December 15, 2011). "Wheat Board’s legal gambit adds to uncertainty for farmers". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved December 15, 2011.
- McFerron, Whitney (December 15, 2011). "Canada Senate Passes Legislation Abolishing Wheat Board Marketing Monopoly". Bloomberg News. Retrieved December 15, 2011.
- Chase, Steven (October 25, 2011). "End of long-gun registry seen as victory in war on Big Government". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved December 4, 2011.
- "Timeline: The gun registry debate". CBC News. October 25, 2011. Retrieved December 4, 2011.
- Davis, Jeff (February 15, 2011). "Bill to kill gun registry sails through House of Commons". Windsor Star. Retrieved February 20, 2012.
- Milewski, Terry (2012-02-17). "Online surveillance bill opens door for Big Brother". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
- Cheadle, Bruce (February 11, 2013). "Conservatives killing off controversial Internet surveillance bill". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
- "No impact overall on beef exports from XL Foods scare, says minister". Telegraph-Journal (Saint John, N.B.). November 22, 2012. p. A9.
- Cohen, Tobi (February 8, 2013). "New bill cracks down on not criminally responsible, raises questions of fairness and necessity". Canada.com. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
- McCarthy, Shawn (May 9, 2012). "Budget bill gives Harper cabinet free hand on environmental assessments". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved May 11, 2012.
- "15 ways to use a 450-page federal budget bill". CBC News. May 23, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2012.
- Fekete, Jason (May 3, 2012). "Critics see Tory omnibus bill as abusive, unethical". Times Colonist (Victoria, British Columbia). Retrieved May 11, 2012.
- "Budget bill's pension changes to save $2.6B over 5 years". CBC News. October 18, 2012. Retrieved October 24, 2012.
- Rubin, Jerry (October 2012). "2012 Federal Budget" (Press release). CI Financial. Retrieved October 27, 2012.
- Chase, Steven (October 18, 2012). "Ottawa shields new Windsor-Detroit bridge from lawsuits". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved October 27, 2012.
- McGregor, Janyce (October 26, 2012). "22 changes in the budget bill fine print". CBC News. Retrieved October 27, 2012.
- Levitz, Stephanie (May 18, 2011). "Harper unveils his biggest cabinet ever, vows to focus on economy". Hamilton Spectator. Retrieved October 30, 2011.
- "Harper appoints 7 new senators". CBC News. January 6, 2012. Retrieved January 6, 2012.
- "Police chief, ex-MP, defeated Tory and first female electee bound for Senate". CBC News. January 6, 2012. Retrieved January 6, 2012.
- "Current Officers". PARLINFO. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Leaders of the Official Opposition". PARLINFO. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Leadership Roles: New Democratic Party". PARLINFO. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Party Roles: Bloc Quebecois". Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Federal Experience: Thomas Mulcair". PARLINFO. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Federal Experience: Joe Comartin". PARLINFO. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "House of Commons Whips". PARLINFO. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "NDP wins in Jack Layton's former riding". CBC News. March 19, 2012. Retrieved March 19, 2012.