Government of Canada


The Government of Canada (French: Gouvernement du Canada), officially Her Majesty's Government (French: Gouvernement de Sa Majeste), is the federal administration of Canada. In Canadian English, the term can mean either the collective set of institutions or specifically the Queen-in-Council. In both senses, the current construct was established at Confederation through the Constitution Act, 1867×as a federal constitutional monarchy, wherein the Canadian Crown acts as the core, or "the most basic building block", of its Westminster-style parliamentary democracy. The Crown is thus the foundation of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the Canadian government. Further elements of governance are outlined in the rest of the Canadian Constitution, which includes written statutes, court rulings, and unwritten conventions developed over centuries.
In Canadian English, the word government is used to refer both to the whole set of institutions that govern the country (as in American usage, but where Britons would use state), and to the current political leadership (as in British usage, but where Americans would use administration).
In federal department press releases, the government has sometimes been referred to by the phrase [last name of prime minister] Government; this terminology has been commonly employed in the media. In late 2010, an informal instruction from the Office of the Prime Minister urged government departments to consistently use in all department communications the term (at that time Harper Government) in place of Government of Canada.The same cabinet earlier directed its press department to use the phrase Canada's New Government.
As per the Constitution Acts of 1867 and 1982, Canada is a constitutional monarchy, wherein the role of the reigning sovereign is both legal and practical, but not political. The Crown is regarded as a corporation sole, with the monarch, vested as she is with all powers of state, at the centre of a construct in which the power of the whole is shared by multiple institutions of government acting under the sovereign's authority. The executive is thus formally called the Queen-in-Council, the legislature the Queen-in-Parliament, and the courts as the Queen on the Bench.
One of the main duties of the Crown is to ensure that a democratic government is always in place, which means appointing a prime minister (at present Justin Trudeau) to thereafter head the Cabinet. Thus, the governor general must appoint as prime minister the person who holds the confidence of the House of Commons; in practice, this is typically the leader of the political party that holds more seats than any other party in that chamber, currently the Liberal Party. Should no party hold a majority in the commons, the leader of one party—either the one with the most seats or one supported by other parties—will be called by the governor general to form a minority government. Once sworn in by the viceroy, the prime minister holds office until he or she resigns or is removed by the governor general, after either a motion of no confidence or his party's defeat in a general election.