Appointments this week: Senate and GG

Paul Martin has appointed five new senators to the Upper Chamber this week. Three Liberals and two Conservative received their golden tickets and will sit in the Big Red Room when the Senate sits resumes later this year.

The new Senators are:
Larry Campbell, Vancouver mayor (Liberal)
Hugh Segal, former PC leadership candidate, Policy CEO and Queen’s prof (Conservative)
Andée Champagne, PC cabinet minister (Conservative)
Dennis Dawson, non-remarkable MP (Liberal)
Rod Zimmer, businessman and Liberal fundraiser (Liberal)

This group is pretty much as expected (disappointing and satisfying at the same time). It’s good to see Mr. Segal in the Senate.

I’m glad to see that Martin is appointing Conservative senators (Chrétien appointed about 50 senators, (almost) all Liberal (save 3 ind)). The Conservative senators that he just appointed are good choices. Yet, aside from Campbell’s celebrity (he’s an annoying character, in my opinion), the Liberal picks fall short of remarkable.

I’d also like to point out that there haven’t been any senators from the old reform/alliance tradition. This is disappointing. The senate could go far to reduce western alienation and perhaps the only solution in the end is to elect it as a provincial check on federal power.

Next up is Martin’s choice of a Governor General. His decision is to be announced tomorrow. I’m hopeful that perhaps we’ll see some balance here as well. It’s likely that Martin will appoint a francophone to follow the general pattern, but it’s also likely because the Liberals desperately need to curry favour in Québec.

However, I think that either Preston Manning or Deb Grey would make a great GG.

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