By Paul Wells - Thursday, January 10, 2013 - 0 Comments
News that the Governor General will meet with aboriginal leaders (or at least with those aboriginal leaders who are pleased to show up) after Friday’s meeting with the PM (if it happens) at Rideau Hall (unless the venue changes) offers us our umpteenth opportunity to consider the autonomy of governors general and lieutenant governors.
They have none.
OK, for the sticklers in the audience, I’m willing to amend that to: they have limitless autonomy which they essentially never exercise. Which is the same as having no autonomy.
The PMO sent out word today that David Johnston will have a “ceremonial” meeting with First Nations leaders, at Stephen Harper’s request. Then Rideau Hall sent out a communiqué saying the same thing. I would be surprised if the timing of the two communiqués was not co-ordinated, so the PM’s staff speaks before the GG’s. This is as it should be, and as it has been since Lord Elgin signed the Rebellion Losses Bill.
One of the enduring modern bits of Ottawa lunacy has been the persistent belief that governors general will do something besides what the prime minister asks them to do. Continue…