Talk:Prime Minister of Canada

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Duration of office[edit]

As has been several times in edit summaries, the need for an election does not limit the term of the PM's office. Think of it this way, a US president is limited to two terms, a Canadian can have multiple terms, and, as with Macdonald, Meighen, King and P. Trudeau, can be defeated and re-elected. No such thing as a term. I'm removing the parameter to avoid this edit war. Walter Görlitz (talk) 06:13, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

See list of Prime Ministers of Canada and King was PM over six elections and was in office for more than twenty years! Walter Görlitz (talk) 06:16, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
I can see where you and 117Avenue are coming from. I suppose my only issue is that the term "At Her Majesty's Pleasure" is difficult for the average reader to understand. I know it is not exactly a "term length", but I thought I would add the information on federal elections as they provide some information as to what is required for a prime minister to continue with his term; and considering this information is posted on the articles of other Westminster offices, I did not see a problem with adding it in. Having said that, I can see where the inaccuracy in including the information may arise, so I will not push the issue. Someone may want to edit the information boxes on other prime ministerial articles, as I would think the same issue would be a problem there as well.
Best, Nations United (talk) 06:33, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
I don't like the term either, but technically, the electorate only assist the crown in the decision, and the PM must address the crown before dissolving parliament. Technically, the crown may determine that an election need not be called and instead the opposition should rule. It was suggested several years ago, but I do not know that it has ever happened. Walter Görlitz (talk) 06:55, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
With that said, the infobox should summarize the contents of the article. If terms are not sufficiently explained in the article, that, and not the infobox, should be fixed. Walter Görlitz (talk) 06:58, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

There seems to have been an attempt or attempts to pack an awful lot of inapplicable or only broadly applicable info into the infobox. For instance, according to the definition of "seat", the prime minister cannot have one. Also, "Government of Canada" is a term under which a number of people fall, how many depending on the use of the phrase. Thus, the benefit of it being in the infobox (or its place therein, at least) is unclear. --Ħ MIESIANIACAL 21:44, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

One serves as Prime Minister of Canada until one resigns, dies or is dimissed by the governor general. GoodDay (talk) 22:33, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

Yes, neither the rules of election and parliament set out in the constitution, or the elections act, affect the office of Prime Minister. The Governor General can keep or dismiss the Prime Minister, with or without the dissolution of parliament, and with or without the drop of the writs. The infobox is correct in that the Prime Minister's term is within the discretion of the monarch. 117Avenue (talk) 03:36, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
It's not incorrect, it's unnecessarily vague. The crown has not arbitrarily removed a sitting PM in Canada since the BNA act was instituted. Having to click through to the article to understand (in part) what it means isn't particularly helpful. Walter Görlitz (talk) 18:06, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
Arbitrarily? No, the crown has never made a decision arbitrarily. But there is no legislation requiring him/her to remove the Prime Minister. 117Avenue (talk) 03:36, 12 February 2015 (UTC)
Suggesting there is legislation, is original research. 117Avenue (talk) 05:57, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
  • In today's world there has to be a limit for any elected official's term such as a PM in office.Obviously there is a reason behind it as with any other law that they limit such a term.The most obvious would be the corruption that comes with power.If needed a new legislation has to be introduced and like most democratic countries eight years or two terms should be the maximum. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:10, 9 September 2015 (UTC)
But as has been pointed out, there is no limit. Your personal analysis notwithstanding. Dbrodbeck (talk) 18:55, 10 November 2015 (UTC)

Mention should be made to fixed election dates created by the 2007 An Act to amend the Fair Elections Act. Edits to this effect have been denied despite need, proper referencing, and considerable effort.

Considerable effort seems to have recently gone into an attempt to have the article say the Elections Act limits a prime ministers time in office. But, no proper referencing was provided to back that up. (Likely because it simply isn't true.) --Ħ MIESIANIACAL 19:33, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
  • The duration of parliaments is limited to five years under the constitution and four years under legislation. But the Prime Minister stays in office during an election. If they win the election, they continue to govern with the same ministry number without any interuption. If they lose, they stay in power until the new PM is finally sworn in. Nothing limits a PM's term length other than the GG saying so. —Arctic Gnome (talkcontribs) 21:08, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
    • Why are you using bullets to reply? It's not the governor general who has the say so, it is the people of Canada. No GG would interfere with the will of the people since that was done in the 1970s in Australia. The rest of what Ħ and Arctic Gnome say is true. There are not limits to term office. Walter Görlitz (talk) 05:51, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
If Govenor General David Johnston had refused Harper & Cabinet's resignation & thus refused to appoint Trudeau & Cabinet to office (which he could have done), it's likely that the Canadian monarch (who resides at Buckingham Palace, in the UK) would've ove-ruled Johnston & accepted the resignatons & made the appointments. GoodDay (talk) 06:01, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
We're off-topic now, but do read 1975 Australian constitutional crisis. Johnston could not have refused either and stayed in his post. It would have likely also have caused a referendum on being a constitutional monarchy. Walter Görlitz (talk)

Infobox: concerning length of term[edit]

An observation: Should we include the House of Commons role? see Prime Minister of Australia & more so Prime Minister of New Zealand, as examples. GoodDay (talk) 20:16, 10 November 2015 (UTC)

The Prime Minister stays in office after dissolution of Parliament, so Australia's wording is misleading. It would be more accurate to say something like "so long as they have confidence of the House, which faces re-election every four years". —Arctic Gnome (talkcontribs) 21:11, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
That's a bit too much for an infobox. The infobox is only supposed to summarise the most basic facts about the subject of the article.
Also, the commons doesn't necessarily face election every four years; parliament can be dissolved and an election called pretty well any time before four years past the last election. --Ħ MIESIANIACAL 21:15, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
Parliament can be dissolved before 4 years, as Harper (who brought in the 4 year rule) did in 2011 or beyond 5 years as in 1917. And Parliament's role in choosing the PM is unofficial. TFD (talk) 08:32, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
Actually, a snap election was called in 2008. The Harper gov't was pushed into an election in 2011, via the opposition defeating them on a non-confidence motion. GoodDay (talk) 13:12, 11 November 2015 (UTC)


The statement "There are no age or citizenship restrictions on the position of prime minister itself" seems to need referencing. Surely there must be some citizenship restrictions? 1305cj (talk) 06:14, 25 February 2016 (UTC)

Anyone can become PM. However, practically, it is an MP, so the person must be at least 18 and a citizen. PM is not an elected position, but an appointed one, the governor general asks someone to form a government. Dbrodbeck (talk) 13:12, 25 February 2016 (UTC)
I kinda figured that, but the way it was worded isn't clear. Just as a point, with no citizenship restrictions -is Ted Cruz eligible to be Prime Minister of Canada? 1305cj (talk) 14:46, 25 February 2016 (UTC)
If he, or anyone, can get the confidence of the House yeah. Dbrodbeck (talk) 14:58, 25 February 2016 (UTC
Two prime ministers have been senators, and I believe between 3 and 5 were prime minister at some point while they were not MPs, one of which was not part of parliament at all (not part of the Commons nor the Senate). Nowadays though, if a PM is not an MP, an MP from their party would be expected to vacate their seat in a "safe riding" for the PM to run in a byelection. trackratte (talk) 15:53, 25 February 2016 (UTC)
John Turner, frex, was neither an MP nor a senator during his term as Prime Minister; he was said to have "governed from the hallway", and didn't actually hold a seat in the House until the election in which he lost the prime ministership. Bearcat (talk) 21:21, 19 July 2016 (UTC)