A senator-free cabinet - Macleans.ca

A senator-free cabinet

Senators will apparently no longer be welcome around the table

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A government source suggests the Prime Minister is about to make an unconventional move when he shuffles the cabinet.

And the prime minister is already signalling one structural change to the cabinet as a direct response to the Senate expense scandal that is dogging his government. Whoever replaces LeBreton as the government leader in the upper chamber will not be a member of the cabinet, a government source said on condition of anonymity.

The government has recently amped up its rhetoric on bringing in an elected Senate. “The next Senate leader will not be a member of the ministry, so that would leave us with a 100 per cent elected cabinet,” said the source.

So apparently Michael Fortier won’t be invited back.

Parliament’s online record identifies only four leaders of the government in the Senate who have not been part of cabinet, the last being Alfred Brooks from 1962 to 1963. Marjory LeBreton has been a member of cabinet since the Conservatives formed government.

It is, at the very least, an interesting bit of symbolism.