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The myth-making power of government: British Columbia, constitutional renewal and the question of regional.. 1996

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THE MYTH-MAKING POWER OF GOVERNMENT: BRITISH COLUMBIA, CONSTITUTIONAL RENEWAL AND THE QUESTION OF REGIONAL STATUS, 1969-1982 by STEPHEN JAMES JOSEPH FLETCHER B.A., The University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1985 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of P o l i t i c a l Science) We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA July 1996 Copyright, Stephen James Joseph Fletcher, 1996 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date DE-6 (2/88) Abstract THE MYTH-MAKING POWER OF GOVERNMENT: BRITISH COLUMBIA, CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM AND THE QUESTION OF REGIONAL STATUS (1969-1982) This thesis examines B r i t i s h Columbia's proposals for c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform i n the dramatic and tumultuous years leading up to the p a t r i a t i n g of the Canadian Constitution i n 1982. Of c r i t i c a l i n t e r e s t i s the province's pursuit of regional status within the federation — a concept that evolved i n scope and complexity under the auspices of successive Social Credit governments. Their goal was to restructure the Canadian state by enhancing Confederation's regional biases i n BC's favour. The BC government, i n an elaborate l i s t of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals released i n 1978, c a l l e d for the extensive reform of national p o l i t i c a l i n s t i t u t i o n s — designed to improve, to a substantial degree, the status and influence of the province at the federal centre (through, among other things, a reformed Senate with p r o v i n c i a l l y - c o n t r o l l e d representation) . In the heated environment of fede r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s that prevailed a f t e r the 1976 separatist v i c t o r y i n Quebec, the BC government argued that Canada consisted of f i v e d i s t i n c t regions, with BC being one of the f i v e (the others were Ontario, Quebec, the P r a i r i e s , and the A t l a n t i c ) . The province's quest for regionhood — and i t s concomitant demands for the devolution of federal powers — was p a r t l y a reaction to i i i the c e n t r a l i s t p o l i c i e s of the federal L i b e r a l government under Pierre Trudeau. BC' s proposals signalled the end of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism i n the province, but the proposals were marred by t h e i r a r c h i t e c t s ' reliance on BC-style pragmatism (eg., province- building) . Another central focus i s the role of myths and myth-making i n Canadian c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i t i c s . This thesis contends that BC' s quest for regional status was flawed by i t s attempt to invoke myths about i t s distinctiveness from the top down. Its demand for regional status was seriously hurt by the lack of h i s t o r i c , grass- roots support among the province's c i t i z e n r y for such a concept. The importance of myths becomes evident when one looks at how myths have been nurtured by n a t i o n a l i s t s i n Quebec. The gestation period for such myths i s often generations-long; the fact BC's pursuit of regionhood ultimately f a i l e d during the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations of 1980-81 proves that myths — c r u c i a l to any society's understanding of i t s e l f and i t s history — cannot be invented out of t h i n a i r . i v TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract . . i i Table of Contents i v Acknowledgement v INTRODUCTION Setting the Stage 1 CHAPTER ONE BC AND THE AGE OF CONSTITUTIONAL CONSERVATISM . 11 Introduction 11 The P o l i t i c s of Economic Development 11 BC and the Rise of Quebec Nationalism 19 CHAPTER TWO BC PURSUES A REGIONAL IDENTITY 26 Introduction 26 The Five-Region Concept of Canada ..27 Regionalism and the Question of Constitutional Reform 33 CHAPTER THREE RENEWING THE FEDERATION: A BC PERSPECTIVE 39 Ottawa Verses the Provinces 39 BC's 1978 Constitutional Proposals 47 The Impact of BC's Reformed Senate on the Federation 52 The Task Force on Canadian Unity (1977-79) 55 CHAPTER FOUR THE ROAD TO THE 1981 CONSTITUTIONAL ACCORD ...61 The Quebec Referendum Aftermath 61 Regionhood i n Decline: The Signing of the 1981 Accord.....65 CONCLUSION REGIONALISM IN THE NEW CONSTITUTIONAL ERA .86 Constitutional P o l i t i c s a f t e r 1982: A Brief Overview 86 The BC Government, Regional Status, and Senate Reform 87 The Myth-Making Power of Government 88 V ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I would l i k e to thank UBC professors Paul Tennant and Alan Cairns for t h e i r thoughtful and sagacious guidance (not to mention t h e i r supreme patience) as I worked toward the completion of t h i s t h e s i s . I would also l i k e to thank my s i s t e r s — Susan, Christi n e and Diane — for t h e i r support and encouragement. This thesis i s dedicated to the memory of my parents, William and Joan Fletcher. 1 INTRODUCTION Setting the Stage In B r i t i s h Columbia, as i n the other Western provinces, the past few decades of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l turmoil have been a period of wrenching transformation and self-evaluation. The province has been forced by circumstance to examine i t s e l f and i t s r e l a t i o n s h i p with the other members of the Canadian federation. This long period of examination, accomplished amidst much hectoring and p o l i t i c a l posturing, was both preceded and accompanied by enormous economic growth, which helped to fuel concerns and questions about the province's status within the federal system. By the mid-seventies, with Quebec nationalism and the r i s e of the P a r t i Quebecois providing the impetus for much soul searching i n a l l parts of Canada, B r i t i s h Columbia was employing the platform of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate to assert i t s e l f and f l e x the muscles of i t s newly-acquired economic wealth. That wealth, i t was discovered, did not e a s i l y translate into p o l i t i c a l clout within the federal system — an earnest and essential message emanating from most Western premiers as the national-unity debates raged. I have used the phrase "forced by circumstance" to describe B r i t i s h Columbia's p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate beginning i n the 1970s. While such a phrase may o f f e r a somewhat 2 hyperbolic interpretation given the p o l i t i c a l and economic changes that were taking place within the province at the time, i t can be argued that desire for broad c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform was, at best, a dormant and scarcely plausible p o s s i b i l i t y as far as BC's p o l i t i c a l leaders were concerned, at least p r i o r to the e l e c t i o n of the P a r t i Quebecois i n the f a l l of 1976. With that e l e c t i o n came a new p o l i t i c a l era i n Canada. The paradigm of federal-provincial relations had now changed, and BC's p o l i t i c a l e l i t e was now required to refashion i t s thinking and to learn to a r t i c u l a t e the province's aspirations within the framework of constitution-building (or, a l t e r n a t i v e l y , constitution-bashing). This paradigm s h i f t placed BC's leaders at a decided disadvantage compared to t h e i r counterparts i n Quebec; the seasoning of a BC p o l i t i c i a n has t r a d i t i o n a l l y offered very l i t t l e opportunity to navigate the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l minefield p r i o r to attaining positions of leadership. The province's p o l i t i c a l culture has always required that i t s more successful p o l i t i c a l p r a c t i t i o n e r s be pragmatists with sharp eyes for the bottom l i n e and a seemingly i n s t i n c t i v e understanding of 'what's good for the province.' Speaking c o n s t i t u t i o n a l l y , I would say that t h i s pragmatism i s s i g n i f i c a n t because i t contrasts sharply with the p r e v a i l i n g p o l i t i c a l culture i n Quebec. In Quebec, p r o v i n c i a l p o l i t i c a l leaders r e a d i l y accept the m o r a l i s t i c p r i n c i p l e that they w i l l be assessed, and t h e i r fates determined, by how the (primarily francophone) electorate perceives that they have defended the i n t e r e s t s of the province within the context of the h i s t o r i c a l l y 3 uneasy association with the rest of Canada. Over the past 30 years t h i s r e a l i t y , driven into a clearer focus by the Quiet Revolution, omnipresent separatist forces and the ensuing c o n s t i t u t i o n a l accords, has enabled Quebec's p o l i t i c a l actors to assume the public stage with a thorough and v i r t u a l l y complete picture of Quebec's status within the federation as well as of the e s s e n t i a l points that require reform (defence of the status quo, of course, has always been l e f t to the domain of the p o l i t i c a l l y naive.) BC's p o l i t i c a l leaders, on the other hand, have r a r e l y developed clearly-defined p r i n c i p l e s on the shape of the federation. Their push for substantial c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change has been mostly reactive, not proactive. In modern times, they are never swept into o f f i c e based on a platform of dramatic a l t e r a t i o n s to the province's relationship with Ottawa. For t h i s reason, the p o l i t i c i a n s of BC most often produce c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i c i e s that can be broadly defined as "ad hoc." This i s not to say that they have not defended the in t e r e s t s of the province as vociferously as Quebec p o l i t i c i a n s have defended Quebec's i n t e r e s t s . Indeed, province-building has been an apparently universal practice throughout the federation. And the exercise of Ottawa-bashing i s known i n BC, as i t i s i n other provinces, as a valuable way to score p o l i t i c a l points on the homefront. Nor i s i t to say that proposals emanating from successive BC governments have been fundamentally without merit. What i t does mean, however, i s that the premiers of BC customarily have reached that high o f f i c e without ever having to 4 deal p o l i t i c a l l y or i n t e l l e c t u a l l y with the complex questions of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change. This u n f a m i l i a r i t y often leads to pragmatic but p r a c t i c a l responses from p o l i t i c a l leaders when confronted with such questions. I w i l l argue i n t h i s thesis that t h i s pragmatic approach may have i t s strengths within the general and parochial confines of BC, but that, on the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l front, i t suggests a major weakness i n that i t i s strongly related to the lack of e a s i l y i d e n t i f i a b l e "myths" of the sort that have played a profound and remarkably important role i n the development of Quebec's rel a t i o n s h i p with the Canadian federal system. (By myths I mean any series of viewpoints, broadly accepted by the c i t i z e n s of the respective j u r i s d i c t i o n , which provide the backdrop or foundation for c a l l s for c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform.) Such myths — either f a l s e or factual or somewhere i n between — are required to foster among respective electorates feelings of support for widespread modification of the c o n s t i t u t i o n . Myths become commonly accepted only a f t e r a lengthy period of gestation: of moulding, of shaping, of perpetual re- examination and refinement. Only then do they earn a place i n the s t o r i e d history of a community, culture or n a t i o n a l i t y . I t i s said that more truth can be found i n the words of the great novelists than i n the words of hi s t o r i a n s . This, to a c e r t a i n extent, i s what I mean by myths and myth-making i n Canadian p o l i t i c s . The mythic q u a l i t i e s of Quebec nationalism's perceived struggle within Canada i s a case i n point. The p o l i t i c a l e l i t e s i n Quebec society may have fostered the growth of these myths, but such myths would 5 not have been sustained had they not held a resonance of truth with the francophone masses. The presiding p o l i t i c a l culture i n B r i t i s h Columbia i s one which, generally speaking, has demanded that the province's p o l i t i c a l masters focus t h e i r energies i n two c r i t i c a l areas: (1) economic development; and (2) the on-going, p o l a r i z i n g c o n f l i c t between the social-democratic impulses of labour on the l e f t and free-market urgings of c a p i t a l i s t s on the r i g h t . P r i o r to the 1970s, p o l i t i c s at the grass-roots l e v e l i n BC was r a r e l y s t i r r e d by concerns that Ottawa had too much power or control over the aspirations and objectives of the westernmost province. Most B r i t i s h Columbians at that time, as well as today, balanced t h e i r l o y a l t i e s between the p r o v i n c i a l and the federal governments, believing somewhat incongruously i n strong governments at both l e v e l s . The electorate did expect i t s premiers to speak up for the i n t e r e s t s of BC when i t came to questions of the economic or f i s c a l v a r i ety, and the premiers did — frequently. Their intent, however, was to assert, i n some p a r t i c u l a r fashion, the province's new-found economic might i n an attempt to break the back of the arguably quasi-colonial status which b e f e l l the province upon entering Confederation. Quasicolonialism, a term used often to describe B r i t i s h Columbia's early, subordinate r e l a t i o n s h i p with Ottawa, i s an offshoot of 19th-century B r i t i s h imperialism. The term has become a fashionable depiction of f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s at the turn of the l a s t century. (And i t i s , I believe, a f a i r l y appropriate term i f used i n the context of the h i e r a r c h i c a l nature of federalism and the wide-ranging powers of the federal government that prevailed i n the f i r s t decades of Confederation. Of course, the federal system slowly evolved c l o s e r to a balance between the powers of the central government and the powers of the provinces — primarily due to the economic growth of the provinces as well as to a series of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l decisions by the J u d i c i a l Committee of the Privy Council that were favourable to the provinces.) It i s important to point out, nonetheless, that while these issues often strained Ottawa-Victoria r e l a t i o n s , they were r a r e l y perceived as symptoms of problems requiring large-scale i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform. Nor were they issues that would s t i r a n t i - federal sentiments i n the hearts of many B r i t i s h Columbians. Instead, these issues were associated with the changing times, demanding, as noted above, pragmatic solutions, not c o n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiation. Only with r i s e of Quebec separatism, and the existence of a federal government seemingly preoccupied by i t , were there manifestations of strong resentment i n BC and the rest of the West. This s i t u a t i o n was not helped by the federal government of the time which, under Prime Minister Trudeau, contained almost no representation from the four Western provinces. The absence of the region's voice at the federal l e v e l , combined with a wide id e o l o g i c a l gulf between the prime minister and the Western premiers, helped charge the issue of Western a l i e n a t i o n during the multilayered c o n s t i t u t i o n a l imbroglios of the 1970s and '80s. 7 As c o n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations reached a fever p i t c h during these decades, BC's p o l i t i c a l leaders were often c a l l e d on to explain the province's frustrations with the federal system. Expressions of such concerns found a home within a single phrase, "The West Wants In" (borrowed from the Reform Party of Canada, t h i s slogan adequately encapsulates the temper of the preceding two decades). A greater voice at the p o l i t i c a l centre, a sympathetic ear from the federal government, a chance to play a r o l e at the national l e v e l — these were the mantras associated with the West's so-called a l i e n a t i o n from the country's centre, and they were not unfamiliar to BC p o l i t i c s . Indeed, B r i t i s h Columbia, although slow to embrace the concept of executive federalism, was at the forefront of constitution-building i n the West. Indeed, the province had a long-dormant case against the o r i g i n a l c o n s t i t u t i o n a l order that had been set aside by a post-war p o l i t i c a l culture which emphasized isolationism. Beginning i n the 1970s, t h i s lengthy period of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l quiescence gave way, and ancient concerns were reconfigured and transformed to f i t within the framework of the emerging c o n s t i t u t i o n a l dialogue between Ottawa and the provinces. I t should be stressed, however, that the catalyst behind the formation of BC's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals from the 1970s onward was the convergence of two, somewhat in t e r r e l a t e d , circumstances: f i r s t and most obvious was the national government's need to f i n d a solution to the Quebec question; second, and almost as c r u c i a l , was the strong c e n t r i s t tendencies o f , t h a t government under Pierre 8 Trudeau. It i s important to note that, although the p r i n c i p l e of regionhood espoused by the Government of BC was an e s s e n t i a l ingredient i n i t s proposals for reforming the federal system, i t f a i l e d to sway the views of either the federal government or i t s p r o v i n c i a l counterparts at subsequent c o n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations. Indeed, there i s l i t t l e evidence that BC i t s e l f paid l i t t l e more than l i p service to the concept when i t was time for the n i t t y g r i t t y of bargaining behind closed doors. The issue of regionhood w i l l be an i n t e g r a l focus as t h i s thesis attempts to analyze the flow of proposals put forth by the province over the past two decades. The reform of national i n s t i t u t i o n s , p a r t i c u l a r l y the Senate, was the foremost attribute of BC's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals. This attribute w i l l be examined i n l i g h t of the success and f a i l u r e s of the F i r s t Ministers throughout a tumultuous p o l i t i c a l era that p i t t e d the expansionary and c e n t r a l i z i n g views of the L i b e r a l government under Pierre Trudeau against the f i e r c e l y conservative premiers of the West. Executive federalism, e s p e c i a l l y when played out i n the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l arena, makes the v i c i s s i t u d e s of p o l i t i c s extremely personal: eleven leaders s i t t i n g around a table and attempting to re-order t h e i r p o l i t i c a l existence means that every decision, every a l t e r a t i o n to the status quo, requires winners and losers. And for any F i r s t Minister who loses, the p o l i t i c a l consequences can be extremely grave. Executive federalism, therefore, accentuates the normal tensions ex i s t i n g within the organized "turf war" that i s known as fed e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s . This i s doubly the case when the focus i s on the constitution. "In the d i v i s i o n of labour between governors and governed," writes Prof. Alan Cairns, "the forces of unity are more deeply rooted i n the underlying society than i n the competing and governing e l i t e s of the federal system." 1 This thesis w i l l examine B r i t i s h Columbia's proposals for c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform i n the dramatic and tumultuous years leading up to the p a t r i a t i n g of the constitution i n 1982. It w i l l ask the following questions: (1) What events wrenched BC out of i t s long period of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism? (2) How did the reform of national i n s t i t u t i o n s evolve into the foremost component of BC's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals? (3) How would these proposals have changed the nature of Canadian federalism had they been accepted rather than ignored, and what e f f e c t would they have had on BC's influence i n Ottawa? (4) What were the reasons for the f a i l u r e of the concept of regional equality as espoused by the BC government i n the 1970s? Each of these questions w i l l be dealt with i n turn i n the following four chapters. This thesis w i l l then conclude by assessing the BC government's h i s t o r i c reliance on pragmatism. I t w i l l address t h i s question: (5) Was BC's position on c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change affected by i t s lack of credible myths, and did i t s government's pragmatic approach to c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i t i c s i n h i b i t ^Alan C. Cairns, "An Overview of the Trudeau Constitutional Proposals," i n Disruptions: Constitutional Struggles, from the Charter to Meech Lake(Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1991) 10 the promotion of myths necessary to establish grass-roots support for i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform? CHAPTER ONE BC AND THE AGE OF CONSTITUT IONAL CONSERVATISM Introduction In order to understand how BC was transformed from an is o l a t e d , constitutionally-conservative province into a proactive, reform-minded "region," i t i s necessary to provide some h i s t o r i c a l background on BC's development. This chapter w i l l focus on the emergence of BC as a major player i n Confederation by d e t a i l i n g two s i g n i f i c a n t events: (1) the province's economic growth; and (2) the r i s e of nationalism i n Quebec. The P o l i t i c s of Economic Development B r i t i s h Columbia joined Confederation i n 1871. Its entry i s propitious, as i t coincided, appropriately enough, with the s t a r t of the f i r s t great push by p o l i t i c a l forces to transform a loosely- knit c o l l e c t i o n of colonies into something resembling the more homogeneous, more vibrant, more aggressively self-aware nation to the south. A federal system based solely on p o l i t i c a l and economic expedience was a system whose days were numbered. Canada's p o l i t i c a l architects knew that the new nation would not gain acceptance i n the hearts and minds of i t s c i t i z e n r y u n t i l there was something to define i t beyond the geographical, beyond the parchment i t s constitution was written on. The Fathers of 12 Confederation r e a l i z e d that t h e i r new creation would not survive Manifest Destiny without a nation-building plan almost as ambitious. "At the e l i t e l e v e l , " Peter Russell states, "the process of Confederation produced a wide-based and p r a c t i c a l , though not philosophical, accord; at the popular l e v e l , however, i t d i d not produce a p o l i t i c a l community with a clear sense of i t s e l f . " 2 Russell argues that the most f o r c e f u l impetus behind Confederation was the unmanageability of the old system under the aegis of the United Province of Canada, i n which r i v a l r i e s between French and English created endless stalemate. Because of t h i s , Russell believes that Confederation was " f i r s t and foremost a p o l i t i c a l , not an economic, pr o j e c t . " 3 While t h i s i s c e r t a i n l y an accurate depiction of the b i r t h of the Canadian nation, i t i s cl e a r that B r i t i s h Columbia's entry i n t o the federal system four years l a t e r was as much the consequence of economics as p o l i t i c s . Prime Minister John A. Macdonald's National Pol i c y appealed to the s e n s i b i l i t i e s of the P a c i f i c colony's p o l i t i c a l leaders, who had also f l i r t e d with the p o s s i b i l i t y of joining the United States. Although there seemed to be l i t t l e impassioned desire to j o i n Canada, BC i n the l a t e nineteenth century was beginning to develop a t h r i v i n g economy based on the export of i t s resources. A continental railway as proposed by 2Peter H. Russell, Constitutional Odyssey; Can Canadians Become a Sovereign People? (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1992) p. 32 3 I b i d . , p.17 13 Macdonald was something that could provide new markets for i t s goods. Moreover, joining Confederation appeared to be the only way for B r i t i s h Columbia to r e t a i n i t s t i e s to a B r i t i s h empire that was becoming increasingly disinterested i n i t s North American holdings. 4 The Canadian federation, therefore, offered the colony of B r i t i s h Columbia a continental railway and the continuation of i t s B r i t i s h roots. The federal government, for i t s part, was offered the chance to outflank the United States on the P a c i f i c coast and carry through with i t s v i s i o n of a nation from sea to sea, an i n t e g r a l component of i t s plans for an expansive p o l i t i c a l community that had the makings of a diverse and cohesive nation. That Quebec and Ontario would gain economically from an expanded federal state, there i s l i t t l e doubt. For B r i t i s h Columbians, the hegemonic subtleties insinuated within t h i s system would come into clea r e r focus as the years progressed. (Macdonald's National P o l i c y was the f i r s t of several federal nation-building actions over the next century to cause consternation i n regions outside of the Canadian sh i e l d . The National Energy Program of 1980 i s a p a r a l l e l i l l u s t r a t i o n . ) The key c r i t i c i s m of such p o l i c i e s from the perspective of Western p o l i t i c i a n s was that they favoured the economic powerhouse of central Canada. Academics grappling with the modern 4See Tim Page, "Perceptions from the West: B r i t i s h Columbia i n the Evolving Pattern of Canadian Federalism," i n Occasional Papers, J. Clarke, S.F. Wise, eds. (Ottawa: Institute of Canadian Studies, Carleton University, F a l l 1982) 14 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l c r i s i s often note that Macdonald's National P o l i c y provided a strong disincentive for Western Canadian p o l i t i c a l leaders to believe i n anything emanating from the federal government that was deemed to be i n the 'national i n t e r e s t . ' Russell, for one, concludes that Macdonald's governments were important i n constructing the "material conditions of nationhood, (but) they contributed l i t t l e to a Canadian sense of p o l i t i c a l community."5 Moreover, t h i s t a r i f f - l a d e n nineteenth-century p o l i c y contributed to a retardation i n the growth of secondary industry outside of central Canada and forced these regions to pay more for manufactured goods than would have been required on the world market. 6 Historian Margaret Ormsby admirably chronicles the major players i n BC who negotiated the colony's entry into Confederation i n her c l a s s i c 1958 book.7 It i s c l e a r that, for many B r i t i s h Columbians of that era, joining Canada was not the best choice, but merely the most appropriate choice given a series of t r y i n g circumstances that included American expansionism (Alaska had just recently been purchased from Russia) and the dismantling of the B r i t i s h Empire i n North America. ^Constitutional Odyssey, p.37 6 T h i s i s c i t e d i n at least one c o n s t i t u t i o n a l document: See Towards a New Canada, (Montreal: Canadian Bar Association, 1978) p.28 7Margaret Ormsby, B r i t i s h Columbia: A History (Toronto: MacMillan, 1958) 15 It was not u n t i l the 1950s that the question of B r i t i s h Columbia's relationship with the federal government re-emerged; at that time, two developments conspired to infuse the debate with p a r t i c u l a r vigour. One was the unprecedented economic boom that pervaded BC following the Second World War, which boosted the province's self-confidence along with i t s wealth. The other development was the r i s e of W.A.C. Bennett as premier of the province and leader of the business-friendly Social Credit party, which would dominate BC's p o l i t i c a l landscape u n t i l the party's almost complete collapse i n the 1991 general e l e c t i o n . If there was one constant component i n the p o l i t i c a l culture of a B r i t i s h Columbia emerging from i t s quasi-colonial status p r i o r to the Second World War, i t was the close connection between economic growth and the province's p o l i t i c a l e l i t e . Economic expansion was the chief focus of the province's leaders, and economic development, esp e c i a l l y during the periods of rapid growth i n the 1950s and '60s, was the s t a r t i n g and f i n i s h i n g point of almost a l l p o l i t i c a l discourse within the province. B r i t i s h Columbia began to resent i t s perceived subservient status to central Canada very early on. This resentment generated c a l l s for a renegotiation of terms from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century. Two events then took place which helped to deflate the h o s t i l i t y and d i s a f f e c t i o n . F i r s t , Canada went through a period of increasing decentralization as the J u d i c i a l Committee of the Privy Council, the country's highest court u n t i l 1949, interpreted the B r i t i s h North America Act (1867) 16 i n a way that was largely favourable to the provinces. Second, the development and exploitation of BC's natural resources catapulted the province into a heady period of prosperity i n which concerns about i t s c o l o n i a l status with central Canada were supplanted by growing t i e s to the international marketplace and a fervent desire among the province's p o l i t i c a l leaders to l i v e i n splendid i s o l a t i o n from the rest of Canada. Notes Edwin R. Black: From the beginning, B r i t i s h Columbians l i t e r a l l y bought Confederation — at a stated price, and i n an e x p l i c i t contract c a l l e d the Terms of Union — and many would argue that B r i t i s h Columbians have not yet joined Canada emotionally. Within the province, elections are seldom fought over such matters as the development and promotion of c u l t u r a l values, education, improving the l o t of the poor, or over the need for more e f f e c t i v e forms of l o c a l government. The successful e l e c t o r a l issues have always been c l o s e l y related to economic development. 8 The sense that national a f f a i r s were largely i r r e l e v a n t to BC reached i t s apogee with the ascendancy of W.A.C. Bennett to the premiership i n 1952, beginning a 20-year reign i n which B r i t i s h Columbia was run very much l i k e a business. Under W.A.C. Bennett, F i r s t Ministers' Conferences were either ignored or attended with bemused d i s i n t e r e s t , and the con s t i t u t i o n a l order was a primary concern only when dealing with f i s c a l mechanisms of the federal system. This protracted period of indifference ended soon a f t e r his retirement i n 1972; the reasons w i l l be discussed l a t e r i n t h i s t h e s i s . aEdwin R. Black, " B r i t i s h Columbia: The P o l i t i c s of Explo i t a t i o n , " i n Party P o l i t i c s i n Canada, Fourth E d i t i o n , Hugh G. Thorburn, ed. (Scarborough: Prentice-Hall of Canada, Ltd., 1979), pp. 290-291 Although one must be cautious i n a t t r i b u t i n g too much of the province's p o l i t i c a l and economic development to a single i n d i v i d u a l , i t i s important to note that Bennett's 20-year reign was a tumultuous one for B r i t i s h Columbia. The premier himself was not one to separate the force of his persona from his province, or to diminish his role i n i t s enormous economic growth. Indeed, the economy was of paramount importance both to the man and to an emerging, vibrant province slowly recognizing that i t s sig n i f i c a n c e i n Canada was growing as i t turned i t s e l f into a 'have' province from a 'have not.' Bennett biographer David M i t c h e l l underscores the importance of t h i s transformation i n the following passage: While debate i n central Canada raged over the neo- nationalism of Quebec's 'revolution t r a n q u i l l e * the country seemed oblivious to the 'quiet revolution' i n the far west. The r i s e of French Canada had la r g e l y a c u l t u r a l and l i n g u i s t i c foundation, whereas B r i t i s h Columbia surged ahead on the impetus of i t s expanding economy. But p o l i t i c a l l y , the transformations i n these provinces would produce a similar e f f e e t . . . p r o v i n c i a l leaders were becoming powers i n t h e i r own r i g h t , b a t t l i n g with the Ottawa mandarinate, determined not to be dismissed again as 'hopeless p r o v i n c i a l s . ' 9 Despite t h i s fact, Bennett remained a fervent i s o l a t i o n i s t when i t came to prov i n c i a l - f e d e r a l r e l a t i o n s . I t was as though the continental divide was, for Bennett, s t i l l a geographical hurdle that could not be jumped. The more l i k e l y explanation for his isolationism, which M i t c h e l l alludes to i n his biography, i s that Bennett i n BC was predominant and v i r t u a l l y omnipresent, but i n his 9David J. M i t c h e l l , WAC Bennett and the Rise of B r i t i s h Columbia (Vancouver/Toronto: Douglas & Mclntyre, 1983), p. 346 18 dealings with his federal and p r o v i n c i a l counterparts he was merely one of eleven leaders who was expected, i n t h i s era of co-operative federalism, to make compromises and concessions. S t r i k i n g such a diplomatic pose was something quite injurious to Bennett's effectively-portrayed image as a man of progress. "The Canadian federal system pressured Bennett to work tenaciously towards increasing the power of his p o l i t i c s within B.C. rather than extending i t beyond the province's boundaries," M i t c h e l l argues. "He was the single most powerful figure i n the p r o v i n c i a l b a i l i w i c k and he did not want to jeopardize that position, even i f i t sometimes meant weakening the larger federal system." 1 0 For Bennett, province-building was t i e d d i r e c t l y to economic development, and was s t r i c t l y an i n t e r n a l matter — the p a r t i c i p a t i o n of Ottawa i n areas of p r o v i n c i a l concern was to be avoided at almost any cost; intrastate federalism was a term not yet part of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l parlance. 1 1 This i s o l a t i o n i s t stance would remain i n place f o r the l i f e of W.A.C. Bennett's governments. Although ignoring the rest of Canada was possible most of the time, such a tack became impossible when 1 0 I b i d . , p.334. 1 1 F o r an examination of some of the plausible reasons why B.C.'s view of provincialism did not extend beyond economic development, see P h i l i p Resnick's "B.C. Capitalism and the Empire of the P a c i f i c , " i n B.C. Studies no. 67 (Autumn 1985), pp. 29-46. Resnick argues that the province's t i e s to Empire ( f i r s t B r i t i s h , then American, and now P a c i f i c Rim) forced the province to think i n i n t e r n a t i o n a l i s t and c o n t i n e n t a l i s t terms, rather than national ones. The fact that i t has always had control over i t s major resource, forestry, also helped to mute i t s p r o v i n c i a l i s t aggression. 19 other p r o v i n c i a l leaders i n s i s t e d on t a l k i n g . At such gatherings of F i r s t Ministers, Bennett generally acted remote and t a c i t u r n . His most frequent response to concerns that the federal system was not working, was to i n s i s t that B r i t i s h Columbia was worse off — f i s c a l l y , at least — than most other provinces thanks to the vagaries of the system. In other words, i f anyone should complain i t should be B.C. This c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of BC's relations with the rest of Canada, t h i s period of splendid i s o l a t i o n , would be sorely tested i n the 1960s as the Quiet Revolution got underway and c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform took on a more urgent countenance. Although s t i l l e xhibiting t h i n l y - v e i l e d contempt for executive-level discussions On changing the federal system, Bennett would provide, i n at least one c r i t i c a l area, the foundation for the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l positions of future BC governments. This important legacy, along with the premier's response to the r i s e of nationalism i n Quebec during the 1960s, w i l l be discussed i n the next section. BC and the Rise of Quebec Nationalism As questions of national unity generated heightened concern about the state of the Canadian federation, Premier W.A.C. Bennett's i n i t i a l public response was one which i l l u s t r a t e d his overriding concern for the future of his home province along with the stereotypical Westerner's view of the Quebec issue. As biographer Paddy Sherman points out, money matters — not the 20 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l framework — were the focus. ...Bennett became the f i r s t premier i n the country to speak blunt, harsh words to Quebec. It was not the Quebeckers who were getting the bad deal from Canada, he said; B r i t i s h Columbians were subsidizing Quebec to the extent of almost $70,000,000 a year — and i t was time t h i s stopped. He would have no part of Quebec's demand for extra pay for b i l i n g u a l c i v i l servants across the country; he would re j e c t any attempt to change Canada's charter to appease Quebec. 1 2 It i s not d i f f i c u l t to believe that t h i s statement would have been p o s i t i v e l y received by most B r i t i s h Columbians. Indeed, t h i s hardline approach to Quebec, far from being the s i m p l i s t i c perspective of a redneck Westerner, nicely enunciated the accepted orthodoxy of p r o v i n c i a l leaders at the time (and well into the future). Bennett believed there was nothing inherently wrong with the way Canada operated; the status quo constit u t i o n had not hampered his quest for economic development. And unlike the p r a i r i e provinces, BC had always had f u l l control over i t s resources and was not required to wrestle those economic levers away from Ottawa. It was presumably Bennett's b e l i e f that Canada's problems, such as i t s f i s c a l arrangements, could be worked out p o l i t i c a l l y and without c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal. Most importantly, the majority of Canadians l i k e l y viewed the s i t u a t i o n the same way, at least u n t i l the Quiet Revolution irrevocably changed things. In Intrastate Federalism i n Canada, Donald Smiley and Ronald Watts characterize the period up u n t i l the 1960s as the age of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism i n Canada. They 1 2Paddy Sherman, Bennett (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart Limited, 1966), p.285 21 note that only a small minority of "Canadians at t h i s time seemed to believe c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform was necessary for the defence and furtherance of the values and interests they espoused." 1 3 The philosophy of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism permeates throughout W.A.C. Bennett's years at the p r o v i n c i a l helm. And based on the h i s t o r i c a l evidence, one may conclude that there was l i t t l e reason for Bennett to assume that the future of BC was even remotely connected to c o n s t i t u t i o n a l arrangements. Bennett may have been the province's most notorious "fed basher," as Donald Blake points out, but his commitment to Canada never wavered. 1 4 This apparent contradiction can be explained by the p o l i t i c a l r e a l i t i e s of the Bennett period. Blake argues that the success of p r o v i n c i a l governments has always rested on the success of t h e i r p o l i c i e s and actions on the economic front. As long as a province such as BC remained i n complete control of i t s economic destiny there would be few battles raging i n f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s . 1 5 While t h i s i s surely a generalization, i t i s one with a s i g n i f i c a n t degree of merit. If the premiers (at le a s t outside •"•̂ Donald V. Smiley and Ronald L. Watts, Intrastate Federalism i n Canada(Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1985), p.5. The authors note that there were two exceptions to the overriding rule of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism: (1) the Interprovincial Conference of 1887, convened by the Quebec premier (B.C. was the only province not to send representatives); and (2) a 1935 report by the League for Social Reconstruction. 1 4Donald E. Blake, "Managing the Periphery: B r i t i s h Columbia and the National P o l i t i c a l Community," i n A History of B r i t i s h Columbia: Selected Readings. P a t r i c i a E. Roy, ed. (Toronto: Copp Clark Pitman Ltd., 1989), pp.177-178 1 5 I b i d . , p. 178 22 of Quebec) were primarily concerned about economic issues, then the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate would tend to revolve around which l e v e l of government was best suited to meeting the economic needs of the c i t i z e n r y . It seems to me that, i n BC at least, t h i s way of thinking played an extraordinarily strong role i n the l a t e r development of provincially-sponsored c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals. With the r i s e of the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate i n BC i n the early 1970s, came an intense pursuit of i d e n t i t y and a vigorous reappraisal of the province's relationship with the central government. S i g n i f i c a n t l y , t h i s reappraisal was top-down i n i t s approach. U n t i l the mid-1980s, the concerns of B r i t i s h Columbia e s s e n t i a l l y amounted to the concerns of the Premier and his government. Unlike the experience i n Quebec, there was no forging of sentiments among the economic, p o l i t i c a l and c u l t u r a l e l i t e s into a c o a l i t i o n of support for c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform; there was no espousal of shared p r i n c i p l e s by the community at large. The government of BC enunciated i t s concerns about f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s and transformed them into a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l platform. Roger Gibbins, attempting to make sense of the unpopularity of the Meech Lake Accord among Westerners compared to i t s i n i t i a l support among t h e i r respective p r o v i n c i a l governments, makes a cogent point which could be nicely applied to the l a s t two decades of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l wrangling: There i s no doubt i n my mind that the Meech Lake Accord found a great deal of support among p r o v i n c i a l governments i n the West... However, i t i s also c l e a r that the western Canadian public see the country somewhat d i f f e r e n t l y than the p r o v i n c i a l governments do. If western Canadians had the chance to act p u b l i c l y i n the 23 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l arena, they would not want to do so within the confines of p r o v i n c i a l communities. To most western Canadians, the dominant p o l i t i c a l community i s the national p o l i t i c a l community, and the reason the Accord ran into trouble was because i t was seen, accurately or not, as threatening that national community.16 This strange dichotomy between the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l dogma of western Canadian p r o v i n c i a l governments and the views of t h e i r respective electorates exists because p r o v i n c i a l leaders, elected to speak so l e l y for t h e i r provinces, cannot change t h e i r p o l i t i c a l currency and speak for the national int e r e s t at F i r s t Ministers' conferences. With the q u a l i f i e d exception of the 1981 accord, a l l attempts to perform t h i s chameleon-like act have f a i l e d (although the Charlottetown accord succeeded i n so much as the premiers d i d not p r e c i p i t a t e i t s downfall, i t ultimately f a i l e d because the nation did not embrace the agreement as being i n the national i n t e r e s t ) . The Canadian c i t i z e n r y , whether defined within the p r o v i n c i a l , regional or national realm, seeks, above a l l , unity (with the obvious and s i g n i f i c a n t exception of Quebec sov e r e i g n t i s t s ) ; i t accepts federal-provincial wrangling over p o l i c y issues as a fundamental element of the p o l i t i c a l process, but i t wishes, at the end of the day, to see both orders of government put away t h e i r hatchets and work toward p o l i t i c a l peace. The p r o v i n c i a l governments, on the other hand, acknowledge the popularity of 1 6Roger Gibbins, "Constitutional P o l i t i c s i n the West and the Rest," i n Constitution i n C r i s i s , Robert Young, ed. (Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 1991) p.28 24 peaceful relations but accept equally the burden and strains of executive federalism. The Government of B r i t i s h Columbia, forced by circumstance to disavow i t s c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism i n the mid-seventies, found that there was almost nothing within the i n s t i t u t i o n a l framework of federalism that was working s a t i s f a c t o r i l y ; and t h i s d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n found an appropriate outlet i n the province's 1978 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals (which w i l l be discussed l a t e r i n t h i s t h e s i s ) . The economic l i b e r a l i s m of Pierre Trudeau's federal government cut deeply into the s e l f - i n t e r e s t s of provinces l i k e BC, which consistently measured t h e i r success through economic progress and development. While W.A.C. Bennett reacted during his l a s t decade i n o f f i c e to the question of Quebec's place i n Canada, t h i s issue was compounded for B i l l Bennett, who had also to react to the perception that his government * s powers were diminishing i n the face of an increasingly centralized federal order. The state of federal-provincial relations during the Trudeau era w i l l become clearer as the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l t a l k s of the 1960s and '70s are examined i n closer d e t a i l . Nevertheless, at the r i s k of over s i m p l i f i c a t i o n , one could argue that there was indeed a comparison that could be made between the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l aspirations of Quebec and B r i t i s h Columbia: to Quebec, the issue was one of obtaining e f f e c t i v e control over i t s c u l t u r a l and l i n g u i s t i c destiny; to BC, the issue was one of retaining e f f e c t i v e control over i t s economic destiny. These two p a r a l l e l concerns 25 would come to the forefront as the conservative p r o c l i v i t i e s of Canada's p o l i t i c a l leaders gave way to an over-powering, inexorable demand for c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal. 26 CHAPTER TWO BC PURSUES A REGIONAL IDENTITY Introduction I w i l l now turn my attention to the evolution of BC's insistence that i t be defined within the federation as a region as well as a province, a development which i s of p a r t i c u l a r importance to t h i s t h e s i s . Through t h i s approach, I w i l l address one of the questions posed i n the introduction: How did reform of national i n s t i t u t i o n s become the foremost component of BC's proposals? Undoubtedly, when Premier W.A.C. Bennett f i r s t p u b l i c l y broached the idea of designating BC as a f i f t h region i n Canada (the other four being Ontario, Quebec, the A t l a n t i c and the P r a i r i e s ) , i t was greeted with as much surprise i n B r i t i s h Columbia as i t was i n the rest of the country. A regional c l a s s i f i c a t i o n would have strengthened the province's hand i n Confederation. But i t s abrupt a r r i v a l on the F i r s t Ministers' table i n the 1960s, coupled with the flimsy argument for i t s support postulated by W.A.C. Bennett, meant the proposal was a l l but ignored by the other leaders.. Nevertheless, the concept of regionhood evolved into one of BC's most consistently enunciated c o n s t i t u t i o n a l tenets, and i t was strongly related to the province's central c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposal of the 1970s and '80s — Senate reform. This paper w i l l argue that B r i t i s h Columbia's regional aspirations were very much p o l i t i c a l , and that the concept was probably resuscitated by Premier William Bennett for two reasons: (1) to strengthen BC's hand at the bargaining table; and (2) to act as a defensive s t r i k e against the c e n t r a l i z i n g p o l i c i e s and c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals emanating from the federal government at t h i s time. This thesis w i l l argue that the concept of regional status as espoused most c l e a r l y by B r i t i s h Columbia i n the 1970s ultimately f a i l e d during the negotiations of 1980-81 because the province's leaders could not dis p e l the notion that the concept was founded i n nothing more than p o l i t i c a l whimsy. Indeed, the concept was such a non-starter at the bargaining table that i t i s d i f f i c u l t not to believe BC's leaders themselves were uncertain of i t s currency or p o l i t i c a l legitimacy. Such i s the fate of b e l i e f s borne from top- down rhetoric rather than from the devout passion of a people. The Five-Region Concept of Canada As the 1960s progressed, and as Canada celebrated the symbolic watershed of i t s centennial year, i t became increasingly evident that c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism was i n decline amongst the country's reigning p o l i t i c a l and i n t e l l e c t u a l e l i t e . In Ottawa, the L i b e r a l government of Lester B. Pearson was beginning to respond to the n a t i o n a l i s t i c forces i n Quebec, which had f i r s t gained e l e c t o r a l c r e d i b i l i t y with the v i c t o r y of Jean Lesage and his p r o v i n c i a l Liberals i n 1960. Pearson was determined to counter the widely-held Quebecois view that the French had no 28 voice and very l i t t l e power at the federal l e v e l — an offshoot of the well-documented economic domination by the anglophone minority inside Quebec. One of Pearson's f i r s t steps was to r e c r u i t the "Three Wise Men" from Montreal (Trudeau, Jean Marchand and Gerard P e l l e t i e r ) , a l l of whom would play i n f l u e n t i a l roles i n Canadian p o l i t i c s over the next f i f t e e n to twenty years. As Pearson neared retirement, other e f f o r t s were made to resolve the question of national unity. I t was at t h i s time that the federal government opened the door to c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal. Prompted no doubt by the 1965 report of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism, the federal government held a F i r s t Ministers' Conference i n February 1968 with the expressed intent of commencing a period of co n s t i t u t i o n a l review. The r e s u l t was Federalism for the Future: A Statement of Policy by the Government of Canada. A c r u c i a l document with a prophetic t i t l e , i t touches on many of the issues that would dominate c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i t i c s up to the signing of the co n s t i t u t i o n a l accord of 1981. Federalism for the Future, cautiously rebukes the decentralizing notions of Quebec n a t i o n a l i s t s and the province-building premiers i n the rest of Canada, and assumes an almost j u d i c i a l posture. I t seeks a balance between c e n t r a l i z i n g and what i t c a l l s "fragmentization," and suggests that a strong Canada requires that neither l e v e l of government obtain the j u r i s d i c t i o n a l upper hand. Canada's i d e n t i t y i s i t s d i v e r s i t y and i t s unity: we lose ourselves i f we lose our two l i n g u i s t i c communities, our diverse c u l t u r a l heritages, or our several regional i d e n t i t i e s . We lose them a l l i f we lose the Canada i n 29 which they have been able to exis t and to develop. 1 7 What i s most i n t r i g u i n g about t h i s passage i s the r e p e t i t i v e use of the word "lose" — four times i n two sentences. Cl e a r l y , an attempt i s being made to emphasize the dangers to the national community of an altered federal state that provides the provinces with increased powers. This concern can also be seen i n the paper's stated c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r i o r i t i e s : the entrenchment of human rights and l i n g u i s t i c r i g h t s . Obviously, the central government, i n a prelude to the Trudeau era (and Trudeau was almost undoubtedly involved i n the preparation of t h i s statement), wanted to promote nation-building as the prime focus i n the debate. The paper states that "the rights of people must precede the right s of governments." 1 8 Yet, fervent decentralizers or province-builders could also take comfort i n the document. As a federal t r e a t i s e , i t was a far cry from the Macdonald concept of federalism, i n which p r o v i n c i a l governments are unquestionably subordinate to the federal government. The d i v i s i o n of powers, the role of the Senate, and greater regional influence i n Ottawa are a l l open for discussion, according to the paper. Always, however, the theme i s one of s t r i k i n g the ri g h t balance, and there i s at lea s t one subtle expectation that the provinces, too, should accept concessions. 1 7Government of Canada,Federalism for the Future: A Statement of Policy by the Government of Canada(Ottawa, February 1968), p.10 1 8 I b i d . , p.8 30 States the paper: "We must be prepared to consider new methods for bringing p r o v i n c i a l influence to bear on developing federal p o l i c i e s , and federal influence on developing p r o v i n c i a l p o l i c i e s , before decisions have f i n a l l y been taken." 1 9 Certainly the 1968 paper lays the ground rules for future f e d e r a l / p r o v i n c i a l discussions on the c o n s t i t u t i o n . It seeks a balance i n re-engineering the country's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l arrangements but seems b l i s s f u l l y ignorant about the complex implications l y i n g behind the process. What, for example, would the provinces gain from nation-building? When one province i n p a r t i c u l a r (Quebec) acknowledges outright that i t s objective i s to become master i n i t s own house, there can be l i t t l e i n c l i n a t i o n for the other provinces to ask for l e s s ; national unity i s a federal r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , not a p r o v i n c i a l one. In B r i t i s h Columbia, W.A.C. Bennett's own brand of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism was also s t a r t i n g to erode. He was never an enthusiastic participant i n f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l meetings, but one such conference would nonetheless become the stage for his most s i g n i f i c a n t foray into c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform when the F i r s t Ministers met exactly one year a f t e r the publishing of Federalism for the Future. It was at t h i s meeting i n February 1969 that Bennett surprised his counterparts by proposing a restructuring of Canada's p o l i t i c a l boundaries into f i v e d i s t i n c t regions (Quebec, Ontario, the A t l a n t i c , the p r a i r i e s , and BC) . The BC government's view was that 1 9 I b i d . , p.44 31 the province should comprise one of the f i v e regions, and should annex the Yukon as well (probably for economic reasons). David M i t c h e l l points out that the f i v e p o l i t i c a l regions were "viable and e f f e c t i v e p o l i t i c a l units consonant and i n conformity with the f i v e economic regions of Canada." 2 0 The proposal, e x t o l l e d by a premier who u n t i l that moment had displayed almost a benign contempt for federal/provincial c o n s t i t u t i o n a l t a l k s , was an astounding about-face. What had precipitated t h i s dramatic transformation? A premier who had once been conservative and leery about such reform, was now advocating a "massive realignment of the country's p o l i t i c a l s t r u c t u r e . " 2 1 Perhaps the r a d i c a l , f i v e - region proposal was Bennett's way of mocking the entire process of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal; an attempt to match Quebec's pursuit of new powers by pushing the envelope even further. If Quebec was claiming i t was not merely a province but a nation, then BC could claim that i t represented a region as well as a province. Perhaps a more plausible explanation, however, i s that the BC government was relaying the message to the federal government that, i f the co n s t i t u t i o n was to be changed, then such changes had to r e f l e c t the emerging r e a l i t y that BC, with i t s growing economic might, was becoming a greater force within the country and deserved a more s i g n i f i c a n t voice. Although the proposal's sudden emergence i n c o n s t i t u t i o n a l t a l k s suggested that i t was perhaps a hasty reaction to the 2 0Mitchell,WAC Bennett and the Rise of B r i t i s h Columbia, p.394 2 1 I b i d . , p.394 32 inchoate process of con s t i t u t i o n a l renewal, the five-region proposal marked the end of con s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism i n the province. S t i l l , the concept of BC as a region unlike the others - - separate and stronger than i t s Western counterparts — was one which would provide a recurring theme for the province as the con s t i t u t i o n a l question was repeatedly broached over the next decade. As a legacy, i t was l i k e l y "one of W.A.C. Bennett's most l a s t i n g contributions to the debate over the future of Canada." 2 2 An equally dramatic i l l u s t r a t i o n of the end of co n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism i n BC occurred a few years l a t e r . In June 1971, W.A.C. Bennett hosted a F i r s t Ministers' conference i n V i c t o r i a . In an apparent breakthrough achieved under the firm guidance of Prime Minister Trudeau, the F i r s t Ministers ended a decades-long impasse by agreeing on a co n s t i t u t i o n a l amending formula that would have patriated the B r i t i s h North America Act from the B r i t i s h Parliament. That BC, and indeed the rest of the West, had not yet formed a clea r c o n s t i t u t i o n a l position was evident within the substance of the amending formula. Although Bennett played an unc h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y active role i n the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conference, the formula would have provided only Ontario and Quebec with, a veto, thus denying the regional voice for BC that was advocated by i t s premier two years e a r l i e r . Fortunately for BC and i t s regional aspirations, the V i c t o r i a agreement was soon scuttled by Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa. Its re j e c t i o n allowed BC the opportunity to expand on i t s claim for regional d i s t i n c t i v e n e s s i n 2 2 M i t c h e l l , p.395 33 time for the next round of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l t a l k s . At such a juncture, the so-called V i c t o r i a amending formula would be abandoned by neophyte Premier B i l l Bennett while the f i f t h - r e g i o n concept would be embraced as a necessary ingredient i n any c o n s t i t u t i o n a l solution. Regionalism and the Question of Constitutional Reform B i l l Bennett succeeded his father as leader of the So c i a l Credit party and was elected premier i n December 1975 a f t e r the b r i e f NDP interregnum. Along with the new premier came a more clear and substantial BC position on the co n s t i t u t i o n . B i l l Bennett would distance himself from the i s o l a t i o n i s t stance of his father. As the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l issue grew i n complexity, Bennett became an avid participant i n a Western Canadian c o a l i t i o n that lobbied the federal government for reforms focusing on the West's lack of p o l i t i c a l clout i n national a f f a i r s . (Expanding on a contemporary metaphor, i t can be stated that, while many Quebecois were seeking powers that would make them masters i n t h e i r own house, Westerners were more concerned about having more power over what was going on i n t h e i r neighbourhood.) In November 1976, the month Rene Levesque was elected Quebec premier, B i l l Bennett provided his province's f i r s t comprehensive statement on how i t viewed the federalism of the future — a future i n which the provinces would play a d i r e c t role i n national a f f a i r s . The statement endorsed W.A.C. Bennett's characterization of BC as a regional e n t i t y . In his position statement, B i l l 34 Bennett noted that BC's significance i n Canada had grown dramatically since i t s 1871 entry into Confederation. Bennett argued that the BNA Act of 1867 was based on a three-region concept of Canada, that the subsequent 1915 amendment to the BNA Act re f l e c t e d a four-region concept of Canada, and that now was the time to update the concept to f i v e regions (with BC, of course, as the f i f t h region). In the statement, the premier summarizes BC's new co n s t i t u t i o n a l p o s i t i o n : . . . [ I ] f substantive amendments are to be made to the Constitution at t h i s time, cer t a i n basic c o n s t i t u t i o n a l readjustments must be made i n B r i t i s h Columbia's representation i n the Senate, on the Supreme Court of Canada, and Pr o v i n c i a l representation on federal boards establishing national policy, so as to redress the con s t i t u t i o n a l imbalance of 1871 and give B r i t i s h Columbia the r i g h t f u l place, i n c o n s t i t u t i o n a l terms, which i t now occupies i n Canada. 2 3 This reinforcement of BC's demand for regional status, f i r s t proffered seven years e a r l i e r , i s once again based primarily on the province's continued economic growth (and i t s complementary growth i n population), and demonstrates the government's enduring conviction that economic power must translate into p o l i t i c a l power. To a province that had only recently shed both i t s i s o l a t i o n i s m and i t s c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism, increased p o l i t i c a l power meant power at the centre. In order to achieve BC's r i g h t f u l place i n Confederation, Bennett outlined four key changes to the federal order i n his 1976 statement: 2 3See "What i s B r i t i s h Columbia's Position on the Constitution of Canada," presented by the Hon. William R. Bennett, Premier of B r i t i s h Columbia ( V i c t o r i a : November 1976) 35 (1) A r e j e c t i o n of the V i c t o r i a Charter amending formula i n favour of a five-region concept that provides BC, Ontario, Quebec, two of the three p r a i r i e provinces and two of the four A t l a n t i c provinces with a veto over future c o n s t i t u t i o n a l amendments. (2) Senate reform. Although there are few d e t a i l s , the statement c a l l s for the doubling of BC representation i n the Upper Chamber from six to twelve seats to take into account the province's population growth. It also proposes a sweeping examination of the Senate's ro l e , the means of appointment, and the tenure of appointees (BC would l a t e r propose that a l l members be p r o v i n c i a l l y appointed) so that "regional points of view [are] r e f l e c t e d i n the national law-making process." Favourable examples are drawn from the regional composition of the U.S. Senate and the Bundesrat i n Germany. (3) Increased BC representation on the Supreme Court of Canada. The premier c a l l s for a 10-member bench i n which B r i t i s h Columbia would be e n t i t l e d to one representative; as f o r the other regions, the p r a i r i e provinces would have two ju s t i c e s from t h e i r region, the A t l a n t i c would have one, and Quebec and Ontario would have three members each. (4) Increased representation from BC on federal boards and agencies. Seeking greater regional influence i n national a f f a i r s , the premier proposed that "the Board of Directors of the Bank of Canada, and the governing body of other s i g n i f i c a n t federal boards and commissions, be appointed by a process involving 36 P r o v i n c i a l Governments as well as the Government of Canada." The premier's statement was s i g n i f i c a n t for a number of reasons. It was the f i r s t p r o v i n c i a l document arguing that the Senate should be reformed i n order to better represent the regions. It was the precursor to a much more elaborate rendering of the province's proposals two years l a t e r , i n which the issue of BC's desire for p r o v i n c i a l equity with the federation's populous powerhouses of Ontario and Quebec would remain a central component. It was the most detailed account produced to date by the p r o v i n c i a l government that provides the essential reasoning behind BC's regional aspirations. It serves notice to the federal government that c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal, i f i t were to occur, would be based not only on coming to terms with dramatic changes i n Quebec but also with the dramatic changes that had taken place i n BC and the rest of the West. And f i n a l l y , i t emphasizes that the type of i n t r a s t a t e federalism BC has i n mind i s one i n which the BC government, acting as the voice of i t s region, holds influence at the federal l e v e l i n p o l i c i e s that a f f e c t the region. On a broader basis, i t i s c l e a r from t h i s document and others soon to follow that the BC government saw c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal not as the need to rebuild national unity or strengthen the national community — which i s how the generator of the process, the federal government, saw i t — but as a chance to s t a r t i n essence from square one and, with an irony that Macdonald would have found unsettling, re-create the federation as a compact 37 between regions/provinces i n which the federal government would f i n d i t s e l f i n a far less dominant r o l e . Donald Smiley and Ronald Watts point out that t h i s fundamental s h i f t i n c o n s t i t u t i o n a l demands was an abrupt response to both the PQ v i c t o r y i n Quebec and the increasing assertiveness of Western premiers. This s h i f t meant that the federal government now faced c o n s t i t u t i o n a l battles on two fronts, as Western concerns usurped the t r a d i t i o n a l predominance of the French/English d u a l i t y question. State Smiley and Watts: The new emphasis i n c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate on proposals for reforming the i n s t i t u t i o n s of the central government can i n large part be attributed to the growing assertiveness of the western premiers and t h e i r desire to make t h e i r p o l i t i c a l power i n national a f f a i r s commensurate with t h e i r economic power...[Prior to 1976] s p e c i f i c a l l y western interests were neither c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e d nor f o r c e f u l l y pressed i n the process of co n s t i t u t i o n a l review. 2 4 Premier B i l l Bennett's 1976 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l statement was a s i g n i f i c a n t v o l l e y i n the d i r e c t i o n of the federal government. I t was a response to a request by the prime minister for the premiers to put forth t h e i r views on how the BNA Act should be patriated. E a r l i e r , at the October 1976 Premiers' Conference i n Toronto, Premier Bennett foreshadowed the tenor of his c o n s t i t u t i o n a l statement with his adamance that BC would again demand better terms within Confederation. His basic premise was that, i n the confederal hierarchy of Canada, BC had ri s e n to t h i r d place behind Ontario and Quebec. "By almost every growth index such as labour 2 4Smiley and Watts,Intrastate Federalism i n Canada pp. 12, 13 38 force, population, p r o v i n c i a l product, and investment, B r i t i s h Columbia i s now the t h i r d largest Province i n Canada yet i t i s woefully under-represented at the national l e v e l , " the premier stressed i n a news release. "In large measure, i t i s afforded today only the same degree of importance i n c o n s t i t u t i o n a l terms that i t had i n 187l." 2 5 2 5From " B r i t i s h Columbia's Statement on the Premiers' Conference," Toronto, Ont., October 1-2, 1976 39 CHAPTER THREE RENEWING THE F E D E R A T I O N : A BC P E R S P E C T I V E Ottawa Versus the Provinces This chapter w i l l focus on probably the most tumultuous period i n modern Canadian c o n s t i t u t i o n a l history. It i s here that Although BC was but one province i n ten vying to imprint i t s v i s i o n on the country's p o l i t i c a l landscape, i t did provide a comprehensive set of proposals from which i t was possible to analyze the BC government's notion of a workable federal union. I w i l l analyze these proposals i n t h i s chapter, and I w i l l then answer one of t h i s thesis's key questions: How would these proposals have changed the nature of Canadian federalism had they been accepted rather than ignored, and what impact would they have had on the BC's influence i n Ottawa? An attempt w i l l be made to assess the scope of these proposals i n an era f i l l e d with s t u l t i f y i n g debate, growing fe d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l animosity, and prolonged c o n s t i t u t i o n a l turmoil. From the beginning i t was clear that the provinces, through t h e i r respective statements and actions on the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l front i n the l a t e 1970s, provided incontrovertible evidence that — despite the separatists now at Quebec's p o l i t i c a l helm — they would not be persuaded to accept p a t r i a t i o n without some s i g n i f i c a n t alterations to the federation. Undoubtedly (but, 40 inadvertently) the premiers i n the rest of Canada were accepting, at least conceptually, Quebec's argument that the c o n s t i t u t i o n was smothering the aspirations of Canada's provinces with i t s worn-out, nineteenth-century centralism. The federal government's v i s i o n of a patriated c o n s t i t u t i o n with a formalized amending mechanism and an entrenched human-rights charter was perhaps not out-of-step with the views of Canadians l i v i n g outside of Quebec, but the provinces viewed the process leading to these objectives as something which could (1) provide them with more power at home and (2) halt the spread of Trudeau's c e n t r a l i z i n g Liberalism while giving them an i n f l u e n t i a l r o l e at the centre. Knowing that they held considerable sway over p a t r i a t i o n , the p r o v i n c i a l premiers, es p e c i a l l y i n B.C. and the rest of the West, were more than w i l l i n g to wage war with the federal government over the future of the federation. In 1978 the Trudeau government elaborated on i t s v i s i o n of the federal system by producing B i l l C-60, l e g i s l a t i o n which would reform ex i s t i n g c o n s t i t u t i o n a l arrangements. The accompanying document, t i t l e d A Time for Action: Toward the Renewal of the Canadian Federation, subscribed to the long-held federal view that Canada as a nation i s more than the sum of i t s regions. The document stated that each province should be allowed to determine i t s own " p o l i t i c a l development." 2 6 But i t also argued that c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal "requires f i r s t of a l l that we become aware 2 6A Time For Action: Toward the Renewal of the Canadian Federation (Government of Canada, 1978) p.11 41 of the values which we need to share, regardless of the community to which we belong or the region where we l i v e . " 2 7 S i g n i f i c a n t l y for BC, A Time for Action endorsed the province's c a l l for a reformed Senate. The document suggested that a new upper chamber — renamed the House of the Federation — could provide an "authoritative expression of regional views." States the document: Essent i a l features of the new House would be the recognition of a role for the provinces i n the selection of i t s members, and provision for proportionately greater representation to the eastern and western parts of the country, with substantial adjustment to ensure adequate representation for western Canada which, u n t i l now, has not received a share commensurate with i t s growing importance. 2 8 This new Upper Chamber would consist of 118 members (half of the number would be appointed by the p r o v i n c i a l l e g i s l a t u r e s , while the federal government would appoint the other h a l f ) . The new chamber would have a suspensive veto over government l e g i s l a t i o n , along with powers to affirm the appointments of heads of federal agencies and ju s t i c e s of the Supreme Court of Canada. I t would also protect l i n g u i s t i c rights as far as the two o f f i c i a l languages were concerned. Moreover, B i l l C-60 would provide the consti t u t i o n with a Statement of Aims, a Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and the re- d i s t r i b u t i o n of l e g i s l a t i v e powers. Although A Time for Action 27 Ibid p. 5 28 Ibid p.23 42 acknowledges the importance of p a t r i a t i n g the co n s t i t u t i o n with a formal amending formula, i t d i d not include any s p e c i f i c s on how t h i s could be accomplished. Academics such Donald Smiley noted that, with B i l l C-60 and i t s accompanying p o l i t i c a l r h e t o r i c , the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l process i n Canada had entered a new era. Smiley saw B i l l C-60 as representative of two important changes i n d i r e c t i o n : (1) a less Quebec-focused process that was expanding to incorporate the newly a r t i c u l a t e d d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n s of other provinces, such as those i n the West; and (2) an emerging consensus that federal i n s t i t u t i o n s required reform i n order to give regional and p r o v i n c i a l interests a greater voice (in the 1968-71 co n s t i t u t i o n a l period, the p r e v a i l i n g view was that most p r o v i n c i a l grievances (namely from Quebec) could be r e c t i f i e d by a l t e r i n g the d i v i s i o n of powers). 2 9 On the surface at least, i t appeared the federal government was moving closer to the view of provinces such as B r i t i s h Columbia, which had been c a l l i n g for greater influence at the national l e v e l . Yet, Ottawa's v i s i o n of strengthening the national community through c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform endured, not only through the grandiloquently p a t r i o t i c prose of A Time for Action but also through seemingly provincial-focused reforms such as the new House of the Federation. - The federal plan for reforming the Senate was purportedly an attempt to appease p r o v i n c i a l concerns, but i t also provided Ottawa with the opportunity to counter assertions from 2 9See Donald V. Smiley.Canada i n Question: Federalism i n the Eighties 3rd Edition (Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson Ltd., 1980), pp.79-84 43 p r o v i n c i a l governments — p a r t i c u l a r l y i n BC — that they were the chief representatives of regional e n t i t i e s . A House of the Federation, a f t e r a l l , would establish a new p o l i t i c a l body that could legitimately compete with p r o v i n c i a l governments for the coveted r o l e of regional agent within federation. Alan Cairns, i n an astute assessment of the Trudeau government's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l agenda, argues that the f e d e r a l i s t v i s i o n was diametrically opposed to the intrastate views of the federal order emanating from such sources as the B r i t i s h Columbia government. B i l l C-60 was. therefore an attempt to s e n s i t i z e Ottawa to regional issues but not to p r o v i n c i a l governments. Although A Time for Action refers to "strong p r o v i n c i a l i d e n t i t i e s , " the over-riding federal aim was to stress the wide-ranging d i v e r s i t i e s within provinces i n order to undermine the claims of premiers that they spoke for homogeneous regions. . . . [ E ] a s i l y discerned although nowhere given comprehensive expression, was the desire to keep pr o v i n c i a l governments i n t h e i r place, create new spokesmen for p r o v i n c i a l i n t e r e s t s , and undermine the a b i l i t y of p r o v i n c i a l governments to stray from t h e i r proper role as spokesmen on p r o v i n c i a l matters to spokesmen on federal matters. 3 0 Keeping the p r o v i n c i a l governments i n t h e i r place was no doubt a growing preoccupation of the federal government, which found i t s e l f under heavy attack from Western premiers who were joining together to express t h e i r antagonism to a central government that was not only formulating a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l v i s i o n that rankled t h e i r 3 0 A l a n C. Cairns, "Recent Federalist Constitutional Proposals: A Review Essay" i n Canadian Public Policy, v. 3, Summer 1979, p.357 44 more t r a d i t i o n a l views of governing ( s p e c i f i c a l l y the Charter of Rights), but was also i d e o l o g i c a l l y far to the l e f t of the mainly conservative premiers i n BC, Alberta and Manitoba. While the West's prosperous economies played an important r o l e i n t h i s increasing assertiveness, i t was also true that the Canadian p o l i t i c a l scene during the 1970s was adding to the premiers' heightened public p r o f i l e as regional spokesmen. With v i r t u a l l y no representation from the West through most of the decade, the L i b e r a l government of Pierre Trudeau was p o l i t i c a l l y incapable of countering the widespread perception that they were out of touch with Western concerns. Therefore, the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l process and i t s almost t o t a l reliance on executive federalism became one of the few arenas where aggrieved Westerners, through t h e i r premiers, could e f f e c t i v e l y enunciate t h e i r opposition to Trudeau's brand of l i b e r a l i s m . This opposition was no more apparent than with the establishment of the Western Premiers' Task Force on Constitutional Trends, which was set up i n 1976 and became a vehicle for the espousal of Western d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n with federal i n t r u s i o n into p r o v i n c i a l a f f a i r s for the remainder of the decade. 3 1 The three 3 1 I n i t s f i r s t report, issued i n May 1977, the Task Force i d e n t i f i e d eight areas i n which federal intrusion was a concern: 1. Consumer and Corporate A f f a i r s ; 2. Resources; 3. Housing and Urban Development; 4. Economic Development; 5. Communications; 6. Immigration; 7. Administration of Justice; 8. Interventions by federal government through the Supreme Court of Canada. With i t s next report, i n 1978, the Task Force added the following to i t s l i s t : Federal Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act, the Fisheries Act, Abandoned R a i l Rights of Way, and video games, among others. 45 annual reports issued by the Task Force emphasize the need for greater federal consultation regarding l e g i s l a t i o n that impacts the provinces, and there was much discussion about a mechanism that would allow t h i s to occur. B r i t i s h Columbia played a c r i t i c a l r o le i n the Task Force (a BC p r o v i n c i a l cabinet minister, Rafe Mair, chaired the group). By the t h i r d report, issued i n March 1979, the Western premiers were able to equal t h e i r federal counterparts i n the use of flowery prose. The report noted "the emergence of a new sense of i d e n t i t y and destiny i n the West" as an important impetus behind the establishment of the Task Force. 3 2 And i t proclaims that the problems inherent within the Canadian federal system can no longer be cured by simple f i x i n g but instead require major i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform. The Task Force proposed three approaches to easing the f r i c t i o n behind federal-provincial r e l a t i o n s : (1) the formalization of F i r s t Ministers' Conferences; (2) increased p r o v i n c i a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the federal law-making process; and (3) c o n s t i t u t i o n a l amendments strengthening some p r o v i n c i a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . A l l three approaches would c o l l e c t i v e l y represent a massive restructuring the p o l i t i c a l process, with the r o l e of the federal government subjugated to the role of the regions/provinces. Again, B r i t i s h Columbia was leading the way i n i t s advocacy of i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform by strongly supporting a new Upper Chamber — one that would give p r o v i n c i a l governments d i r e c t influence within 3 2 T h i r d Report, p.9 46 the federal l e g i s l a t i v e process. In the 1979 Task Force report, the BC government expands on i t s view that a reformed Senate "has the potential to promote national unity to an unprecedented degree." 3 3 The province's proposal would see an executive council established within the new Senate, whose members would be d i r e c t l y appointed by the p r o v i n c i a l governments. The reformed i n s t i t u t i o n would be provided with an absolute veto over a l l matters of " c r u c i a l i n t e r e s t " to the provinces. 3 4 The BC government had raised Senate reform into a leading component of any c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal. With almost non- existent representation from the West within the federal government, a new Upper Chamber offered a hopeful solution. The i n t r i n s i c appeal of such a proposal to the Western provinces was that i t would o f f e r them entry into a p o l i t i c a l process dominated by c e n t r a l Canadians. 3 5 I t could also be seen as an a l t e r n a t i v e to the disconcerting symbolism of a "balkanized" Canada that was being associated with t r a d i t i o n a l forms of decentralization. S t i l l , i t i s d i f f i c u l t to say whether the o v e r a l l intent of the three reports of the Western Premiers' Task Force was to draw a l i n e i n the sand regarding the West's p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal or whether i t was even more shrewdly t a c t i c a l — an attempt to strengthen the bargaining p o s i t i o n of the region as i t prepared for negotiations with both the federal 3 3 I b i d . , p.53 3 4 I b i d . , p.52 3 5See Smiley and Watts, p. 13 47 government and i t s p r o v i n c i a l counterparts i n ce n t r a l Canada. What i s c e r t a i n i s that the West's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l v i s i o n , as spelled out i n the three Task Force reports, was sharply d i f f e r e n t from the v i s i o n promulgated by Ottawa i n A Time for Action. B r i t i s h Columbia, i n p a r t i c u l a r , had again stressed the need for substantial i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform. The province had elaborated on the foundation of t h i s demand i n a 1978 set of proposals, which would again pursue the view of BC as a v i t a l economic region of Canada that had now outgrown the p o l i t i c a l short pants given to i t by the Fathers of Confederation a century e a r l i e r . BC's 1978 Constitutional Proposals Although B r i t i s h Columbia had joined i t s Western provinces i n a c o l l e c t i v e attack on the co n s t i t u t i o n a l status quo through such enterprises as the Task Force on Constitutional Trends, i t was not prepared to disavow i t s claim to regionhood. The 1978 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals from the p r o v i n c i a l government elaborated on such a claim, explored i t s h i s t o r i c a l basis, and noted that as "one moves to the more s p e c i f i c and operational p o l i c y l e v e l s the dichotomy between the p r a i r i e west and the p a c i f i c west becomes more and more apparent." 3 6 The proposals note that unique geographical features — i t s mountains and i t s rugged coastline — contributed i n a s i g n i f i c a n t 3 6Province of B.C. B r i t i s h Columbia's Constitutional Proposals; Presented to the F i r s t Ministers' Conference on the Constitution (October 1978), p. 19 48 way to the province's resource-based economy. And that both geography and economics have combined to produce a region that i s unlike any other i n Canada. The lineage of t h i s r h e t o r i c i s obviously the erstwhile c a l l for a five-region Canada by W.A.C. Bennett. The difference i s that while Bennett senior was one who preferred the image of someone b l i t h e l y ignorant of the world outside BC's borders, Bennett junior, facing the v i r t u a l c e r t a i n t y of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal, was presiding over a government that was now suggesting the e x i s t i n g c o n s t i t u t i o n was an unworkable product of a bygone age, and that i t was preventing the province from p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the a f f a i r s of the federation i n a way commensurate with i t s growing economic status. Some p a r a l l e l s could be broadly drawn between BC's 1978 proposals and the r h e t o r i c a l angst exhibited by n a t i o n a l i s t s i n the Quebec government. Both provinces complained that they were being held back by a f e d e r a l i s t s t r a i t j a c k e t . And both provinces draped t h e i r grievances i n history — both were f i g h t i n g to free themselves from the bonds of either colonialism or, i n the case of BC, quasicolonialism. And while Quebec measured i t s distinctness by language and culture, BC measured i t s distinctness by geography and economics. Such p a r a l l e l s can only go so f a r , of course. In Quebec, a new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l regime meant exclusion (decentralization); i n BC i t meant inclusion ( i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform to promote regional influence at the centre). The BC government defined a new arrangement as one that recognized i t s status as a region, and as something that would allow i t to represent t h i s 49 d i s t i n c t region i n Ottawa. In summary B r i t i s h Columbia i s c l e a r l y one of Canada's major d i s t i n c t regions...It i s only through f u l l and d i r e c t representation on federal i n s t i t u t i o n s that the natural barriers to integration of B r i t i s h Columbia into the national mosaic can be o f f s e t . 3 7 The 1978 proposals produced by the B r i t i s h Columbia government discuss the following: the reform of the Supreme Court of Canada; an improved process for f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s ; a b i l l of r i g h t s ; language rights; the d i s t r i b u t i o n of powers; an amending formula. The following w i l l summarize the most s i g n i f i c a n t aspects of these proposals. In keeping with W.A.C. Bennett's c a l l for a five-region concept of Canada, the proposals centre around a reformed upper chamber as the best way to reduce regional cleavages and create a workable federation that i s cognizant of the needs of a l l provinces. The paper declares that the e x i s t i n g Senate's r o l e as a rubber stamp for the House of Commons betrays i t s o r i g i n a l intent, which was to represent regional interests at the national l e v e l . It notes that there are two ways to solve the problem: (1) increased decentralization; or (2) major reforms of federal i n s t i t u t i o n s to provide for a greater p r o v i n c i a l voice at the centre. The paper states that the l a t t e r option i s a more pressing matter, and places the second chamber at the top of i t s p r i o r i t y l i s t , explaining that " i t i s i n creative and far-reaching reform of the Senate that our main hope for better decision-making i n the Ibid., p.19 50 country l i e s . " 3 8 In 1969, as mentioned e a r l i e r i n t h i s thesis, W.A.C. Bennett stunned his p r o v i n c i a l counterparts by unveiling a revised map of Canada with the country divided into f i v e p o l i t i c a l regions, and with an enlarged BC as one of the f i v e . In 1978, B i l l Bennett modified t h i s e a r l i e r concept by repackaging i t and making i t s l i g h t l y more palatable i n the eyes of the prime minister and his fellow premiers. Instead of proposing a reformed Canada with f i v e dramatically realigned j u r i s d i c t i o n s , the younger Bennett c a l l e d for a reformed Senate i n which seats were d i s t r i b u t e d i n accordance with the five-region concept of Canada. . . . B r i t i s h Columbia i s of the view that the o r i g i n a l Canadian approach updated i n 1915 — namely that of equal regional representation — i s s t i l l the best, provided that i t i s further updated and adjusted to recognize the fact that Canada i s now a country composed of f i v e d i s t i n c t regions — A t l a n t i c , Quebec, Ontario, Prairie,and the P a c i f i c . 3 9 Although the province was c a l l i n g for major i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform of the Senate, t h i s reform did not go so fa r as to replace the current anachronistic appointment process with a process based on popular e l e c t i o n . Instead, the BC government hoped to change how appointments were made to the Senate i n order to strengthen i t s influence within the i n s t i t u t i o n rather than of i t s c i t i z e n s i n general. Under the province's proposals, each p r o v i n c i a l government would appoint one member from the p r o v i n c i a l cabinet to J 8 I b i d . , pp. 28-29 3 9 I b i d . , pp. 34-35 51 act as the province's leading senator i n Ottawa. A l l other senators would be appointed by the respective p r o v i n c i a l governments from the public at large, and they would s i t at the pleasure of the premier; t h e i r tenure would correspond to that of the p r o v i n c i a l government. The BC government, i n i t s 1978 proposals, rejected the concept of d i r e c t l y - e l e c t e d senators because of the p o s s i b i l i t y that national-party l o y a l t i e s would l i k e l y "dominate other interests i n an elected second chamber and thus undermine i t s essential role as the protector of regional i n t e r e s t s . " 4 0 One must assume that the BC government believes i t would not be equally disruptive to have provincial-party l o y a l t i e s enmeshed within the national p o l i t i c a l structure; and one must also assume that the BC government believes the interests of p r o v i n c i a l governments, be they p a r t i c u l a r or general i n nature, are always representative of the interests of t h e i r regional or p r o v i n c i a l populations as far as national issues and p o l i c i e s are concerned. The BC government's proposals also c a l l e d for reform of the upper chamber's j u r i s d i c t i o n i n order to provide the i n s t i t u t i o n with the c a p a b i l i t y to influence or control l e g i s l a t i o n of concern to p r o v i n c i a l governments. In i t s 1978 l i s t of proposals, B r i t i s h Columbia proposed that a restructured Senate hold an absolute veto i n a number of areas of p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t to the provinces — areas that held a " s i g n i f i c a n t , as opposed to i n c i d e n t a l , impact on the provinces or regions of the country." 4 1 These included: 4 0 I b i d . , p. 35 4 1 I b i d . , p. 38 52 appointments to the Supreme Court of Canada; appointments to major federal agencies and commissions; amendments to the c o n s t i t u t i o n i n areas currently under federal j u r i s d i c t i o n , and including a l l amendments involving reforms to national i n s t i t u t i o n s ; the use of parliament's declaratory power; and the federal spending i n areas of p r o v i n c i a l j u r i s d i c t i o n . In addition, BC's reformed Senate would hold a suspensive veto i n a l l other areas not s p e c i f i c a l l y granted absolute-veto status. The defeat of government l e g i s l a t i o n , either through the exercise of the absolute veto or suspensive veto, would not a f f e c t the status of the governing party, as the "government would be responsible s o l e l y to the House of Commons."42 The Impact of BC's Reformed Senate on the Federation B r i t i s h Columbia's plans for reforming the Senate, the most s i g n i f i c a n t and far-reaching of i t s 1978 proposals, would have marked a major transformation i n the federal system. With the Senate's seats d i s t r i b u t e d equally among the f i v e regions, BC would c e r t a i n l y see i t s influence within the federation increased. Its newly-realized veto power over federal l e g i s l a t i o n would e f f e c t i v e l y combat the old perceptions of a province ignored. With an upper chamber re-defined along the l i n e s of BC's proposal, the federal government would have had no alternative but to seek feedback from V i c t o r i a whenever p a r t i c u l a r l y sensitive l e g i s l a t i o n was contemplated. In essence, power and influence would gravitate 4 2 I b i d . , p. 41 53 to the regions, and t h i s would require Ottawa to be much aware of regional s e n s i t i v i t i e s when i t came to setting the national agenda. But was such a proposal viable? It i s ce r t a i n that reform of such magnitude, especially i n post-1982 Canada, would be an exceedingly d i f f i c u l t task to accomplish. For example, would the other provinces accept B.C. as a f i f t h region and provide i t with the p r i v i l e g e — and power — of a Senate veto. The c o n s t i t u t i o n a l rhetoric evident i n the years 1969 to 1981 suggests strongly they would not. Indeed, the f i r s t ministers of 1969 seemed as unwilling to consider BC's regional aspirations as t h e i r successors i n 1981. The r e l a t i v e l y sudden emergence of these aspirations l i k e l y had something to do with t h i s c o l l e c t i v e cold shoulder. But probably more important than t h i s lack of an h i s t o r i c a l argument i n support of regional status was the fact that such a concept, i n 1980-81, was swimming against the ti d e of p r o v i n c i a l equality. The chauvinism apparent i n providing some provinces with veto powers was already losing favour i n co n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations as provinces such as Alberta — which, arguably, played a much more i n f l u e n t i a l role i n federal-provincial relations during the 1970s and '80s given both i t economic power and the f o r c e f u l presence of' i t s premier, Peter Lougheed — pressed for a federal system i n which a l l provinces were c o n s t i t u t i o n a l l y equal. BC's goal of reforming the Senate so that i t would be able to j o i n Ontario and Quebec atop the federation's hierarchy was a misconceived proposal from the perspective of other provinces, which found t h i s e l i t i s m irksome, into l e r a b l e and unacceptable. Eventually, the other 54 provinces may come to accept BC as a d i s t i n c t region, but such acceptance w i l l l i k e l y come without any concomitant powers within the federation. In a revealing address directed at Quebeckers i n 1981 (before that year's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations), B i l l Bennett made a conscious e f f o r t to al i g n the two provinces i n body and soul, declaring that they were s i m i l a r l y disaffected members of a Canadian state which had f a i l e d to recognize t h e i r respective dist i n c t n e s s , and had thus imperiled t h e i r aspirations. He spoke of Quebec and BC as "kindred s p i r i t s " and noted that B r i t i s h Columbia was committed to a "wholesale renewal" of the fe d e r a t i o n . 4 3 Evoking a passion vaguely reminiscent of a Quebec n a t i o n a l i s t , Bennett argued that federal p o l i c i e s had too often i n the past neglected to take BC into account: My province i s d i s t i n c t i n i t s history, i n i t s peoples, i n i t s economic thrust, and pa r t l y d i s t i n c t i n i t s culture, from other regions of Canada. It i s even d i s t i n c t from the rest of Western Canada...The fact i s that natural forces...have made B r i t i s h Columbia remote from central decision-making i n t h i s country. Unfortunately we have been kept remote by a Constitution that does not give my province adequate representation i n national i n s t i t u t i o n s such as the Senate of Canada, the Supreme Court of Canada and major federal boards and commissions. 4 4 The message to Quebec was one of s o l i d a r i t y . The message to Ottawa was that BC shared with Quebec an unhappiness with status- 4 3 W i l l i a m R. Bennett, "Canada: A B r i t i s h Columbia Perspective," i n Miracles of Survival: Canada and French Canada, Waris Shere, ed. (Smithtown, NY: Exposition Press, 1981) pp. 31, 33 4 4 I b i d . , p.30 55 quo federalism, and that any future negotiations toward a renewed cons t i t u t i o n must r e f l e c t t h i s r e a l i t y . I n s t i t u t i o n a l reform and a recognition of regionhood had become the cornerstones of BC's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l position, and t h i s position would receive a boost with the findings of the Task Force on Canadian Unity. The Task Force on Canadian Unity (1977-1979) Set up soon a f t e r the separatist v i c t o r y i n the 1976 Quebec el e c t i o n , the federally-appointed Task Force on Canadian Unity spent two years examining the country's p o l i t i c a l cleavages i n hopes of discovering ways i n which i t could acknowledge i t s d i v e r s i t y but remain united. Its goal was to s t r i k e a balance between c u l t u r a l duality and regionalism while not embracing, but not denying, some form of pan-Canadian nationalism. In the process i t helped to shed more l i g h t on why provinces l i k e BC reacted v i s c e r a l l y against the P a r t i Quebecois' concept of sovereignty- association i n p a r t i c u l a r and, perhaps, c u l t u r a l d u a l i t y i n general. States the task force: In addition to passing ultimately beyond d u a l i t y , sovereignty-association does something else: i t challenges regionalism — or seems to. What pequistes have i n mind, so far as one can t e l l , i s some kind of one-to-one association between Quebec and the rest of Canada...But what i s the "other" to which Quebec would relate?...[T]he l o g i c of the sovereignty-association option presses hard on regionalism to deny i t s e l f for the sake of a duality which i s l i t t l e more than the Cheshire cat's smile. 56 Certainly t h i s assumption — that the r i s e of regionalism among pr o v i n c i a l premiers was a d i r e c t response to the issue of c u l t u r a l d u a l i t y — had dominated the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate up to the 1970s. Undoubtedly, provinces such as BC had an i n t e r e s t i n ensuring that the parameters of the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate were expanded beyond the question of two nations warring within the bosom of a single state. One could argue that the recently-formulated c o n s t i t u t i o n a l position of the BC government was at least p a r t i a l l y designed to refute the assumption of Quebec n a t i o n a l i s t s as fostered by the issue of c u l t u r a l - d u a l i t y : that the Rest of Canada was a homogeneous entity as f a r as economics, history and p o l i t i c a l culture were concerned. The Task Force on Canadian Unity was somewhat sympathetic to the aspirations of BC, including i t s c a l l for regionhood, i t s demand for r a d i c a l change, and i t s more s p e c i f i c demand for greater regional influence within the central government. And the task force was l a r g e l y sympathetic to the notion that Macdonald's v i s i o n of federalism was outdated and i n need of reform. The Task Force's report c a l l e d for the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l recognition of the provinces as equal " i n stature and maturity" to the federal government. 4 6 I t c a l l e d for a devolution of powers to the p r o v i n c i a l governments and favoured a f u l l enumeration of those powers within the 4 5A Future Together: Observations and Recommendations (Task Force on Canadian Unity, January 1979),p.32 4 6 I b i d . , p.86 57 c o n s t i t u t i o n . It favoured e l e c t o r a l reform to improve regional representation within the House of Commons. And i t proposed an expanded Supreme Court of Canada i n order to handle an increased c o n s t i t u t i o n a l workload as well as the d u a l i s t i c and r e g i o n a l i s t i c demands for representation. Most importantly for BC, the Task Force advocated a new second chamber that would provide p r o v i n c i a l governments with s i g n i f i c a n t new powers at the national l e v e l . The proposed Council of the Federation would consist of " p r o v i n c i a l delegations to whom pr o v i n c i a l governments could issue i n s t r u c t i o n s , each delegation being headed by a person of m i n i s t e r i a l rank or on occasion by the premier." 4 7 While accepting BC's demand for a reformed Senate, the Task Force did not go so far as to provide the province with a five-region formula for representation i n the new body, but i t nonetheless re-worked the formula so that BC' s proportion of seats would r i s e s i g n i f i c a n t l y (from about f i v e percent to 13 percent). In terms of an amending formula, the Task Force leaves that up to the House of Commons and the new Council of the Federation to resolve amicably, with a r e q u i s i t e Canada-wide referendum for r a t i f i c a t i o n . Unfortunately for BC, the Task Force favours a four- region approach to ratification-by-referendum, with the regions of Ontario, Quebec, the A t l a n t i c and the West requiring respective majorities before the amending formula would pass i n a referendum. Task force members concluded that the introduction of a new region to the formula was possible, but such a region would 4 7 I b i d . , p.97 58 require at l e a s t 25 percent of the Canadian population. The report, however, did not close the door on regionhood e n t i r e l y . In an e a r l i e r analysis of the national-unity c r i s i s , the Task Force pointed out that Canada could, t h e o r e t i c a l l y at l e a s t , be divided into four or f i v e regions and suggested that BC could, possibly, be considered a region onto i t s e l f . 4 8 While t h i s might have been only a r h e t o r i c a l genuflection to the BC government, the Task Force uses much stronger language i n order to assert that i t believes with equal fervour i n the causes of regionalism and c u l t u r a l d u a l i t y : ...[J]ust as we contend that, for a complex v a r i e t y of reasons, duality must today be approached primarily (although not exclusively) through the medium of Quebec's relations with the rest of Canada, we also believe that regionalism i n Canadian l i f e i s expressed primarily (although, again, not exclusively) within the framework of the provinces, and we regard the p r o v i n c i a l and t e r r i t o r i a l governments as c r i t i c a l agents i n a r t i c u l a t i n g the concerns and aspirations of these regional communities. 4 9 Observers of the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l debate, i n responding to the federal v i s i o n as espoused by the Task Force, were quick to point out that the proposals would r e s u l t i n a massive, c e n t r i f u g a l devolution of powers. J. Stefan Dupre and Paul C. Weiler, i n a h i g h l y - c r i t i c a l assessment of the Task Force's recommendations, noted that an increasingly aggressive West was now emulating Quebec i n i t s desire to achieve within the federation a recognition of i t s d i s t i n c t needs and desires, and agreed that divergent demands were 4 8 I b i d . , p. 26 4 9 I b i d . , p.27 59 creating a p o l i t i c a l l y v o l a t i l e s i t u a t i o n . They maintained that l e g i s l a t i v e change, not "ambitious c o n s t i t u t i o n a l restructuring," was the most feasible route to a more harmonious s i t u a t i o n . 5 0 The authors believed that wholesale c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform would s p e l l the end of what had been a reasonably successful experiment i n federalism. Alan Cairns notes that the federally-commissioned Task Force's report expresses l i t t l e i n the way of a substantive v i s i o n of the national community as portrayed i n B i l l C-60. He concludes that the Task Force's basic c o n s t i t u t i o n a l philosophy i s a new version of the Compact Theory, i n which Ottawa's role within the federation i s c l e a r l y subordinate to the role of the provinces. Thus, a Trudeauesque form of federalism i s overarched by aims designed to address p r o v i n c i a l and regional aspirations and s e n s i t i v i t i e s : The overriding stress on what divides us, on why we have provinces, and on the small worlds i n which we l i v e , undermines the c r e d i b i l i t y of the occasional reference to common int e r e s t , common purpose, and common w i l l (p.17) and thus provides l i t t l e s o c i o l o g i c a l or psychological j u s t i f i c a t i o n for a strong, autonomous central government r o l e . 5 1 The Task Force on Canadian Unity's expansive report i l l u s t r a t e d how dramatically the pendulum had swung. If nothing e l s e , i t would have c e r t a i n l y proved a boon to provinces such as 5 0 J . Stefan Dupre and Paul C. Weiler, "A Sense of Proportion and a Sense of P r i o r i t i e s : Reflections on the Report of the Task Force on Canadian Unity," i n Canadian Bar Review (Vol. LVII, 1979), pp. 462-463 5 1"Recent Federalist Constitutional Proposals: A Review Essay," p.359 60 B r i t i s h Columbia, which saw t h e i r concerns given c r e d i b i l i t y . A f t e r a l l , a Task Force empowered by the federal government to seek solutions to the co n s t i t u t i o n a l dilemma had recommended a reformed upper chamber very similar i n design to one advocated by the BC government l i t t l e more than two years e a r l i e r . Certainly a consensus seemed to be building on the issue of broad i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform among those interested i n a more r e g i o n a l i s t i c d e f i n i t i o n of Canadian federalism. The l i n e had c l e a r l y been drawn between the Trudeau v i s i o n of federalism and a p r o v i n c i a l i s t v i s i o n trumpeted by the BC government, among others. The tumultuous fede r a l - p r o v i n c i a l negotiations of 1980 and 1981 would be the severest t e s t yet for proponents of both v i s i o n s . 61 CHAPTER FOUR THE ROAD TO THE 1981 CONSTITUTIONAL ACCORD The Quebec Referendum Aftermath This chapter w i l l recount the ultimate f a i l u r e of BC's quest for regionhood during the h i s t o r i c negotiations of 1980-81. The following question w i l l be addressed i n t h i s chapter: What were the reasons for the f a i l u r e of the concept of regional equality as espoused by the BC government i n i t s 1978 proposals? F i r s t , however, i t i s necessary to encapsulate the events that sparked t h i s h i s t o r i c negotiating round: the defeat of sovereignty- association i n the Quebec referendum of May 1980. Immediately aft e r the separatist defeat, the federal government and the provinces i n the rest of Canada were seemingly united i n t h e i r commitment to the p r i n c i p l e of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l renewal. Exploratory discussions between both leve l s of government got underway i n earnest almost as soon as the referendum was over, and yet there s t i l l appeared to be l i t t l e hope that the deep philosophical chasm between the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l position of Ottawa and that of most of the provinces could be narrowed enough to a t t a i n s i g n i f i c a n t progress at the bargaining table, e s p e c i a l l y on such seemingly intractable issues as an amending formula and Trudeau's plan for an entrenched charter of r i g h t s . Finding a solution to the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l imbroglio that 62 s a t i s f i e d Quebec's needs was an undeniable challenge for the Trudeau government; but equally d i f f i c u l t was the question of s a t i s f y i n g the needs of the Western provinces, which was p a r t i c u l a r l y perplexing given B r i t i s h Columbia's insistence on broad i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform. C o l l e c t i v e l y , Quebec and the West were c a l l i n g for a much more provincially-based federalism, and yet both regions strove to achieve t h i s new federal v i s i o n through quite separate means; while Quebec's n a t i o n a l i s t s t r a d i t i o n a l l y asked for greater decentralization and an end to Ottawa's encroachment on p r o v i n c i a l powers, BC was determined to see region a l / p r o v i n c i a l governments provided with greater power and influence at the centre. Both concepts together represented a federalism i n which the federal government was i n a c l e a r l y subordinate p o s i t i o n to those of the provinces. Even to consider the p l a u s i b i l i t y of each concept i n i s o l a t i o n , or to assume that one would be accomplished and one would f a i l i n the upcoming negotiations, would be tantamount to accepting the view that Trudeau was w i l l i n g to abandon his v i s i o n of a national community i n order to reach a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l agreement. That both lev e l s of government had d i f f e r e n t agendas and d i f f e r e n t c o n s t i t u t i o n a l visions was fast becoming a cornerstone of modern federalism i n Canada. Undoubtedly, both sides saw the unfolding c o n s t i t u t i o n a l drama as a c o n f l i c t between divergent vis i o n s — and divergent i n t e r e s t s . To the v i c t o r went the s p o i l s , who gained not only j u r i s d i c t i o n a l predominance within the realm of c e r t a i n laws and regulations but also a symbolic r i g h t to act as 63 the true representative of a regional or national community. Neither side, therefore, could r e a l i s t i c a l l y fathom a renewal of the federation that was purportedly i n the best interests of the nation unless i t served to weaken or destroy the opposing v i s i o n . As Alan Cairns points out, t h i s highly-competitive power struggle between the federal government and the provinces has long been a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the federation; the on-going c o n s t i t u t i o n a l c r i s i s has amplified such divisiveness. Cairns, i n an evaluation of Trudeau's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals, concedes that Canadians are quite plausibly "a united people divided by our governments." He writes: In pursuing his objectives and responding to the s e l f - interested cues emanating from the pyramid of p o l i t i c a l and bureaucratic power over which he presides i n Ottawa, Mr. Trudeau i s driven to exaggerate the Canadian component of our i d e n t i t i e s . . . I t i s equally l o g i c a l and natural for our p r o v i n c i a l leaders to exaggerate the p r o v i n c i a l components of our i d e n t i t y . They have no r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for our national i d e n t i t y although they cannot completely disregard i t , as even Mr. Levesque recently discovered. Certainly the post-referendum Trudeau government, freshly returned to power with a parliamentary majority a f t e r less than a year i n opposition, was prepared to undertake substantial c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change. As for the provinces, the past decade of t a l k s , p o l i c y papers and c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals had e s s e n t i a l l y o b l i t e r a t e d the l a s t gasps of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conservatism. B r i t i s h Columbia and Alberta, for instance, had comprehensive proposals on Disruptions, p. 64 64 the table. And the BC premier had already stated that a major overhaul, not minor tinkering, was the answer to Canada's p o l i t i c a l woes. Both lev e l s of government were prepared for what they now perceived as a necessary and inevitable stage of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform. B r i t i s h Columbia had a detailed set of proposals that i t was peddling as a solution to the country's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l woes. However, organizations such as the Canada West Foundation, which normally sympathized with the concerns of p r o v i n c i a l governments i n the West, issued a document that l i s t e d a number of concerns with the c e n t r i f u g a l federalism apparent i n BC's proposals. 5 3 The Canada West Foundation saw t h i s proposed outward s h i f t as disadvantageous to Canadian federalism, which perhaps underscored one deficiency i n B r i t i s h Columbia's argument that the answer to the country's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l troubles i s a realigned structure which provides the provinces with power and influence at within the central government. A problematic, long-term r e s u l t of such a reformed Senate could be the unfortunate intermingling of national parties and forces with p r o v i n c i a l e l e c t i o n campaigns, posits the Foundation's discussion paper. And i t asserts that another poten t i a l disadvantage could be more disharmonious c o n f l i c t and disagreement, not l e s s : The populous centre would control the Commons, the hinterland would control the Council of Provinces, and 5 3David Elton and Peter McCormick, Alternatives 1980: The Basic Issues i n Constitutional Reform(Banff: Canada West Foundation, Alternatives 1980 Conference, November 1980), p.14 65 the c o n f l i c t symbolized by the confrontation between the two chambers could weaken both the national government and the country. 5 4 In other words, what B r i t i s h Columbia could be proposing i n i t s pragmatic yet self-serving demand for a new provincially-appointed Upper Chamber was not a solution to, but an entrenchment of, national disunity. The question raised by papers from organizations l i k e the Canada West Foundation was c e r t a i n l y unsettling: were the Western premiers of f e r i n g proposals that had the best interests of Westerners i n mind, or were the demands based on l i n g e r i n g desires to trim the s a i l s of an expansionist federal government by re-shaping federalism into a more p r o v i n c i a l i s t image? Regionhood i n Decline: The Signing of the 1981 Accord The 1981 Constitutional Accord, which led to the proclamation of the Constitution Act, 1982, gave Canada an entrenched Charter of Rights and Freedoms, a patriated constitution, and an amending formula that would play a contributing role i n subsequent f a i l e d attempts at c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform. The accord was the culmination of an elongated and often b i t t e r debate between Ottawa and the provinces. At i t s zenith, the confrontational nature of Trudeau's last-chance bid to give Canadians a renewed federation saw the two l e v e l s of government ignominiously face each other i n the courtroom over Ottawa's plan to act u n i l a t e r a l l y and bring the c o n s t i t u t i o n 5 4 I b i d . , p.14 66 across the A t l a n t i c . And the fact that the accord would not be signed by Quebec's premier played into the hands of Quebec n a t i o n a l i s t s a few years down the road, who subjectively interpreted t h i s as an attempt by the prime minister and the other premiers to i s o l a t e Quebec — turning i t into an orphan without a home i n the Canadian c o n s t i t u t i o n a l family (a c y n i c a l representative from the rest of Canada would l i k e l y embrace a d i f f e r e n t metaphorical twist -- Quebec as a province i n self-imposed e x i l e , for example.) Like the accord's aftermath, the bargaining process i t s e l f was, i n the words of authors Stephen Clarkson and C h r i s t i n a McCall, "chaotic and open-ended." They write: It was conducted by a few men at the summit of the country's p o l i t i c a l c l a s s , who became i n the process larg e l y disconnected from the economic forces and s o c i a l interests that normally dictated t h e i r actions as they schemed and bargained to secure t h e i r own, often diametrically opposed, p o l i t i c a l g o a l s . 5 5 The new constitution, formally signed into law by the Queen i n A p r i l 1982, marked the end of an era i n Canada, emerging as i t did f i f t y years aft e r the Statute of Westminster. I t was a Declaration of Independence, of sorts, from the Mother Country — although a muted and much-belated one as B r i t a i n had been more than w i l l i n g to disentangle i t s e l f from the Canadian c o n s t i t u t i o n for many decades. Yet, the new constitution, achieved aft e r twenty desperate 5 5Stephen Clarkson and Chr i s t i n a McCall, Trudeau and our Times: Volume One: The Magnificent Obsession(Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1990), p.274 67 years of sharp i n t e l l e c t u a l discourse and mounting p o l i t i c a l r h etoric about the necessity of re-shaping the Canadian state, was e a s i l y and quickly disparaged. The 1981 accord was signed, for example, by B i l l Bennett, and yet the accord was hardly r e f l e c t i v e of his province's 1978 proposals f o r a renewed federation — proposals i n which the premier had rei t e r a t e d his province's view that nothing short of major i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform would resolve federalism's problems. As McCall and Clarkson point out, the process was indeed chaotic. And the aftermath would only i n s p i r e further chaos. Donald Smiley wrote prophetically about the accord as a "dangerous deed" that almost guaranteed the country a series of future c o n s t i t u t i o n a l c r i s e s . Smiley viewed the signing of the 1981 accord as an affront to Quebec, whose populace had been promised a renewed federation: a promise which, despite the celebratory poses of the other f i r s t ministers, had not been f u l f i l l e d . "The pledges of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l reform made to the Quebec electorate by the federal L i b e r a l leaders have not been honoured," Smiley writes, "and i t i s not too much to say that t h i s electorate has been betrayed." 5 6 Smiley r i g h t f u l l y acknowledges the situation's irony — the process undertaken to address the concerns of Quebec had only 5 6Donald Smiley, "A Dangerous Deed: the Constitution Act, 1982," i n And No One Cheered: Federalism, Democracy and the Constitution Act, Keith Banting and Richard Simeon, eds.(Toronto: Methuen, 1983), p. 76 68 served to undermine i t s t i e s to the rest of Canada. B r i t i s h Columbia, too, could (at least academically) proclaim i t s e l f a loser at the negotiating table. Although i t s premier was a w i l l i n g participant i n the discussions and signed the accord as e n t h u s i a s t i c a l l y as the other nine premiers, his i d e a l i s t i c sentiments about reform, espoused just a few years e a r l i e r and c l e a r l y defined as "demands," seemingly disappeared once the hard bargaining got underway. The province had demanded a greater, more i n f l u e n t i a l role i n the federation, and yet there was no change i n the p o l i t i c a l structure of the system. I t c a l l e d for a reformed Senate, one i n which representatives from the regions were d i r e c t l y linked to p r o v i n c i a l governments and were afforded increased powers to impede federal l e g i s l a t i o n p o t e n t i a l l y detrimental to the a f f a i r s of the provinces. Instead, the new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l amending formula would now require unanimous consent among the eleven governments before future reform of federalism's i n s t i t u t i o n s could take place — a horrendously d i f f i c u l t task to achieve (as the Meech Lake debacle would soon prove). The fact that such reforms were not negotiated i n 1980-81 was, from a Western perspective, a g l a r i n g l y obvious error of omission that l e f t the accord a flawed document. Roger Gibbins, i n an 1983 essay, interpreted the accord as a "tragic l o s t opportunity" that would do nothing to weaken the perception of Western a l i e n a t i o n or stem the incessantly acrimonious nature of fe d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l 69 r e l a t i o n s . 5 7 "While western p r o v i n c i a l governments successfully protected t h e i r own status and j u r i s d i c t i o n a l i n t e r e s t s , " Gibbins writes, "they f a i l e d to advance the national interests of t h e i r c o n s t i t u e n t s . " 5 8 Gibbins contends that, while p a t r i a t i o n of the co n s t i t u t i o n and the entrenchment of the Charter of Rights would have l i t t l e impact on regional p o l i t i c s , the amending formula helped to reinforce the claim among p r o v i n c i a l premiers "that they alone speak for t h e i r p r o v i n c i a l electorates...Ottawa cannot appeal d i r e c t l y to the people of the West over, under or around t h e i r p r o v i n c i a l governments." 5 9 While t h i s concern was disproved somewhat by the Charlottetown referendum i n 1992 ( a l b e i t i t was not done "over the heads" of the premiers but, rather, with t h e i r consent), the more s i g n i f i c a n t issue of the premiers guarding t h e i r monopoly as chief regional spokespersons requires further elaboration. The amending formula accepted i n 1981 was considered a v i c t o r y by Western premiers because i t did not categorize them as "second-class" i n r e l a t i o n to Ontario and Quebec, both of which would have achieved veto powers had previously-favoured formulae (such as the highly-touted V i c t o r i a formula) been adopted. What the entrenched formula did not achieve was an easy road to future i n s t i t u t i o n a l reform of the federation. What had happened to d e r a i l BC's once implacable insistence s'Roger Gibbins, "Constitutional P o l i t i c s and the West," i n And No One Cheered, pp. 129-132 5 8 I b i d . , p. 122 5 9 I b i d . , p.127 70 that major reform, including a reshaped and re-engineered Upper House, was essential i f Canada's leaders were to t r u l y achieve a workable federal system? David Milne, i n his book on the making of the 1982 Constitution, provides some plausible answers. Milne notes that one formidable obstacle i n the Western premiers' drive f o r a more ce n t r i f u g a l system was Trudeau's obstinate r e f u s a l to entertain such a p o s s i b i l i t y . Indeed, the prime minister, devoted to the assertion that a stronger federal government would make for a stronger Canada, perceived such a system as akin to Quebec separatism and regarded i t as a spurious attempt to further denigrate the federal government's role i n the federation. Trudeau was almost v i s c e r a l l y opposed to t h i s concept of provincialism; he di d not wish to see Canada transformed into a "free association" or a "community of communities." Thus, he was as unwilling to concede to regionalism as he was to separatism or, for that matter, Quebec nationalism. 6 0 I t can be argued that Trudeau's obstinence i n the face of p r o v i n c i a l c a l l s for greater influence within the federal system, and his marked, even h o s t i l e , reaction to such demands, made i t impossible for reforms l i k e those put forth by BC i n 1978 to reach the negotiating table i n 1980 and 1981. Indeed, i t had become overwhelmingly apparent that the Trudeau of the 1980s was much d i f f e r e n t — and f e e l i n g much more i n control — from the Trudeau of the 1970s. Trudeau's dramatic return to power i n February 1980 6 0See David Milne, The Canadian Constitution (Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 1991) pp. 95-96 71 had re-energized a g i f t e d p o l i t i c a l leader who had, less than a year e a r l i e r , r e a l i z e d i n sombre retrospect that his main goal — to make Quebeckers f e e l more cl o s e l y connected to the rest of Canada — had not been adequately f u l f i l l e d . His restoration would not be deemed a success unless he could extricate Ottawa from the hidebound confines of federal-provincial r e l a t i o n s . As Stephen Clarkson and Christina McCall point out, Trudeau was convinced by the lack of success on the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l front during the short- l i v e d stewardship of Joe Clark, a Progressive Conservative whose f e d e r a l i s t v i s i o n was more compatible with the premiers' view of Canada than Trudeau's, that the long p o l i t i c a l impasse was not the r e s u l t of partisan differences but was instead the product of the system i t s e l f . The unwritten understanding that a l l decisions of f i r s t ministers had to be made unanimously had encouraged each premier to withhold consent from a proposed agreement i n order to extract ever-greater concessions for his province. Trudeau had l o s t control of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations i n the 1970s when he had allowed the premiers to put t h e i r own long l i s t s of issues on the table. An ever-extending agenda with no fixed deadlines for decisions had removed any d i s c i p l i n e from f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l meetings. 6 1 Thus, the dynamic which had helped produce B r i t i s h Columbia's wide- ranging c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals i n 1978 was now altered. In essence, the provinces were no longer i n control of the agenda because the federal government manipulated the events of 1980 to usurp that r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . Trudeau was no longer interested i n Clarkson and McCall, pp. 278-279 72 seeking unanimity at the F i r s t Ministers' table and t h i s e f f e c t i v e l y undermined each premier's once-formidable power to add pet concerns to the agenda. This new, hard-line strategy was manifested i n the Trudeau government's brazen gamble to pursue a u n i l a t e r a l solution to the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l issue a f t e r the collapse of talks i n 1980. It was an approach to federal-provincial relations that would p r e v a i l during the Trudeau government's fourth and f i n a l term. Aside from c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i t i c s , i t could be seen as well i n other post- 1980 federal e f f o r t s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the National Energy Program - - the economic centrepiece of the new Trudeau government that was so unabashedly n a t i o n a l i s t i c and in t e r v e n t i o n i s t i t almost immediately antagonized the multinational o i l companies that dominated the West's energy sector; t h i s p o l i c y further aggravated the already incendiary relationship between the Alberta government and the federal government (and perhaps pushed Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed into the forefront as the major Western spokesman i n the ensuing c o n s t i t u t i o n a l t a l k s ) . S t i l l , the NEP and the new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i n i t i a t i v e were devices which Ottawa planned to use to re-assert the relevance of the national government i n the minds of Canadians; i t was part of Trudeau's grand strategy to paint the premiers as s e l f - i n t e r e s t e d and parochial, showing the process that the government i n Ottawa was the only government w i l l i n g to speak up for the needs of Canadians as a c o l l e c t i v i t y . 6 2 6 2See David Milne,Tug of War; Ottawa and the Provinces Under Trudeau and Mulroney(Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 1986), pp. 39-41 73 By 1981, the federal government was determined to f i g h t the increasing strength of provincialism that had been made possible p a r t l y by the growing economic might of the West, p a r t l y by generous federal transfer payments, and partly by the advent of F i r s t Ministers conferences (which provided the premiers with a platform to challenge the federal government). 6 3 In November 1981, Trudeau revealed how h i g h l y - c r i t i c a l he was of "summit federalism": [He explained] that there had been almost as many f i r s t ministers' conferences i n the 14 years of his tenure as Prime Minister as there had been from Confederation to 1968. He linked t h i s evidence of executive federalism to the notion, which he saw the premiers as holding, that 'Canada's national government would be a council of f i r s t ministers...that federalism demanded that the federal government give i n whenever the provinces reach a unanimous p o s i t i o n . ' 6 4 The Trudeau government was also buoyed i n 1980 by the r e s u l t s of the Quebec referendum, probably believing with utmost confidence ( l i k e many Canadians) that the separatist dragon had been f i n a l l y s l a i n . The referendum win, where Ottawa believed i t had stepped i n and rescued the sit u a t i o n from the foundering p r o v i n c i a l L i b e r a l s , produced an enormous sense of s e l f - confidence i n the Trudeau government at the outset of i t s mandate. Whenever small groups of ministers or aides met, they patted themselves on the back for a job well done and planned even more aggressive strategies for the future. They were almost drunk with a new sense of power 6 3Sheilagh M. Dunn, ed.,The Year i n Review 1981: Intergovernmental Relations i n Canada (Kingston: Queen's University, 1982), p. 2 6 4 I b i d , p. 3 74 and accomplishment. 6 5 The r e s u l t s l i k e l y had a similar a f f e c t on the premiers (in the rest of Canada) as well; the immediate post-referendum period was a time for c o n c i l i a t i o n , and t h i s was not l o s t on B i l l Bennett, who was considered one of the "doves" among the f i r s t ministers, one of two or three premiers among the so-called "Gang of Eight" who was looking for c o n c i l i a t i o n and compromise at the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l t a b l e . 6 6 Sidetracked by an upcoming p r o v i n c i a l e l e c t i o n and a growing recession i n the West, i t i s plausible to assume that Bennett's c o n c i l i a t o r y e f f o r t s were a subtle acceptance that his province's r e g i o n a l i s t aspirations and i t s concomitant proposals for a massive overhaul of the federal system were off the table before the c r u c i a l 1981 discussions were even underway. The Gang of Eight, a c o a l i t i o n of eight premiers (the leaders of Ontario and New Brunswick had sided with the national government) formed to stop Trudeau's u n i l a t e r a l attempt to patriate the c o n s t i t u t i o n succeeded, thanks to several timely court decisions, i n i t s attempt to block the move. A number of scholars have noted that the plan for unilateralism showed an utter disregard, even contempt, for the role of the provinces i n the federation. In essence, they concur with the Supreme Court of Canada which, i n i t s 1981 r u l i n g , found that a strong. 6 5Robert Sheppard and Michael Valpy, The National Deal; The Fight for a Canadian Constitution (Toronto: Fleet Books, 1982), p. 40 6 6Year-End Review of Intergovernmental Relations, p.22 75 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l convention existed which forbade the national government from amending the constitution without substantial p r o v i n c i a l consent. Despite t h i s v i c t o r y , the ensuing negotiations proved to be a d i f f e r e n t world for the premiers, who had c o n t r o l l e d the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l agenda for much of the previous decade. The BC government's plans for greater influence within the federation and i t s accompanying proposal for a provincially-appointed Upper Chamber, could no longer claim much attention. The premiers had been e f f e c t i v e l y placed on the defensive by a series of c e n t r a l i z i n g federal proposals, which included an entrenched Charter of Rights, and by the fact that the prime minister was i n the enviable p o s i t i o n of being lauded pervasively f o r playing a primary r o l e i n defeating the forces of Quebec separatism just eighteen months e a r l i e r . B r i t i s h Columbia was further r e s t r i c t e d i n the types of demands i t could make for several other reasons. F i r s t , i t was now part of a c o a l i t i o n of eight premiers and, therefore, i t s concerns about BC's stature i n Confederation had to be shelved i n favour of a more broad-based strategy i n which the eight premiers could promote a united front against the federal government. And second, the BC premier happened to be chairman of the premiers' conference for the 1981-82 term, and t h i s placed him i n a p o s i t i o n where diplomacy was required, not hyperbole. In the period between the Supreme Court decision and the 1981 F i r s t Ministers' c o n s t i t u t i o n a l conference, B i l l Bennett was c h i e f l y concerned about 76 maintaining an aura of c o n c i l i a t i o n between the two l e v e l s of government, and worked to ensure that t h i s c r i t i c a l negotiating session would not be scuttled by the c o n f l i c t i n g p e r s o n a l i t i e s of the prime minister and some of the premiers. In his often caustic portrayal of the BC premier, Stan Persky writes t h i s of Bennett's performance i n the weeks p r i o r to the November 1981 conference: Premiers such as Lougheed, Levesque and Newfoundland's Peckford were far too prominent i n t h e i r antagonism to Trudeau to engineer a compromise. Davis and H a t f i e l d , committed to the federal position, could hardly represent the eight dissenting provinces...Bennett on the other hand, was committed to the dissident provinces (sometimes known as the "gang of eight"), yet not irrevocably bound to them...If anyone could prepare the ground for compromise, Bennett, with his rather boy scout-like sense of propriety, stood the best chance with the testy Trudeau. 6 7 Moreover, at the f i r s t public session i n the week-long negotiating process that culminated i n the November 1981 deal between Ottawa and nine of the ten provinces, the premier of B r i t i s h Columbia disposed of any l i n g e r i n g doubt about whether the 1978 proposals were off the table when — unlike the hardline premiers of Newfoundland, Alberta and Quebec -- the BC premier urged compromise. It was the " f i r s t small sign of a break i n the group of eight," write Sheppard and Valpy of the premier's c o n c i l i a t o r y remarks. 6 8 If the BC premier's demands for a restructured Confederation appeared to diminish i n resonance a f t e r "'Stan Persky,Bennett I I : The Decline & Stumbling of S o c i a l Credit Government i n B r i t i s h Columbia 1979-83(Vancouver: New Star Books, 1983), p. 177 6 8Sheppard and Valpy, p. 268 77 1980, they did so at a time when the federal government was attempting to recreate the c e n t r a l i s t v i s i o n of the federal system that had existed long before the notions of provincialism or Quebec separatism had become commonplace. David Milne argues that the federal c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals of 1980 were flavoured with a nineteenth-century view of the Canadian p o l i t i c a l system. Ottawa's attempt at u n i l a t e r a l action was a cl e a r example of how f a r the federal Liberals were w i l l i n g to embrace the "quasi-imperial t r a d i t i o n rooted i n the Macdonald legacy." 6 9 While u n i l a t e r a l action was ultimately derailed, a number of other measures on the federal agenda were consistent with Ottawa's no-holds-barred determination to achieve a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l breakthrough. Of p a r t i c u l a r significance were the federal government's proposals for tightening i t s control over the economic d i r e c t i o n of Canada. Milne argues that the federal government seized upon i t s archaic controls over p r o v i n c i a l laws — those of reservation and disallowance — and i t s powers to intrude into s t r i c t l y p r o v i n c i a l matters through i t s spending, declaratory and emergency powers, as bargaining chips i n order to obtain the acquiesence of the provinces as far as a Charter of Rights was concerned. Of course, the federal proposals of 1980 indicated that Ottawa wanted more from the provinces than simple acquiesence. I t had also unveiled, plans by which i t sought "more e f f e c t i v e means for c o n t r o l l i n g economic provincialism...the net e f f e c t of which would expand d i r e c t federal j u r i s d i c t i o n and subject p r o v i n c i a l actions that 6 9David Milne,Tug of War, p.41 78 in t e r f e r e d with the economic union to j u d i c i a l review." 7 0 Again, t h i s "powers over the economy" package ultimately f a i l e d (in most respects) to win approval, but i t could s t i l l be plausibly seen as successful i n terms of Ottawa's secondary intention — that the package serve as a bargaining chip allowing the federal government to concede defeat i n return for further concessions from the provinces. As for i t s r h e t o r i c a l significance, the "powers over the economy" package revealed an Ottawa no longer w i l l i n g to be bowled over by p r o v i n c i a l demands; the federal L i b e r a l government of post-1980 was aggressive i n i t s approach, s e l f - s e r v i n g i n i t s r h e t o r i c , and brimming with confidence i n i t s s t y l e ; i t seemed determined to do to provincialism what i t had done (with the not inconsequential help of the Quebec L i b e r a l Party) to the cause of Quebec independence i n May of 1980. Milne points out, i n his analysis of t h i s turbulent time i n fe d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s , that the federal government was determined to achieve a predominant role i n the economic management of the country under the guise of the "national i n t e r e s t . " This was undeniably a cause for concern among most of the provinces, but p a r t i c u l a r l y those outside the i n d u s t r i a l heartland of c e n t r a l Canada. Generally speaking, there were three parts of the 1980-81 federal c o n s t i t u t i o n a l package that were of c r i t i c a l concern to B r i t i s h Columbia: (1) the Charter of Rights and Freedoms; (2) the proposals dealing with the economic issues discussed above; and (3) the proposed amending formula. The Charter of Rights was a subject 7 0 I b i d . , p. 44 79 the premiers approached with a ce r t a i n degree of trepidation, given i t s power to transfer p o l i t i c a l issues from the domain of government to the domain of the ju d i c i a r y . With t h i s i n mind, the provinces were r i g h t l y concerned about the Charter's impact on future p r o v i n c i a l l e g i s l a t i o n and i t s obvious usurpation of the p r i n c i p l e of parliamentary supremacy. Robert Sheppard and Michael Valpy, i n a study of the 1980-81 co n s t i t u t i o n a l negotiations, astutely address the premiers' antipathy toward the Charter when they state: ...[T]he p r o v i n c i a l d i s l i k e of Trudeau's proposed charter went beyond who was the best provider of basic r i g h t s , the federal or p r o v i n c i a l government...The l i s t of what the provinces didn't l i k e about an entrenched charter was quite long: the sweeping new powers being given to the courts; the hint of American jurisprudence i n f e c t i n g the language of the leg a l rights section; the prospect of expensive and time-consuming redr a f t i n g of pr o v i n c i a l l e g i s l a t i o n to comply with the new code; and the d i r e c t recourse to the courts by wronged i n d i v i d u a l s , bypassing [provincial] human rights commissions. 7 1 While an entrenched Charter would unquestionably l i m i t the power of Canada's l e g i s l a t u r e s , what made the "whole question dangerous was that i t was impossible to judge just how far the charter might l i m i t p r o v i n c i a l powers." 7 2 Although the Charter of Rights was a s i g n i f i c a n t and contentious issue, the other two issues were primarily of concern to provinces i n the West and i n the A t l a n t i c region. The proposed amending formula was based on the formula worked out i n V i c t o r i a , iSheppard and Valpy, p. 148. 2David Milne,The Canadian Constitution, p. 75 80 B.C. i n 1971 (and hence i t s name). The formula provided the two most populous provinces of Ontario and Quebec with a veto over a l l future c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change. In t h i s respect — had i t been accepted — i t would have been a severe setback to provinces such as BC, which had been s p e c i f i c a l l y advocating reforms allowing i t a more equal status with the central Canadian provinces. The formula e f f e c t i v e l y re-stated the age-old regional inequality that prevailed i n the federal system. This amendment formula e s s e n t i a l l y c a r r i e d forward the older regional l o g i c of Canadian Confederation, enshrined, for example, i n Senate representation. There the whole of the East and West of the country — each region consisting of four separate provinces — was put on a par with the single dominant provinces of Ontario and Quebec. This arrangement had not helped the second chamber r e f l e c t and defend regional concerns against "Empire Canada," but i t did demonstrate rather graphically the lopsided nature of the Canadian federal union. 7 3 Of course, the V i c t o r i a formula was probably also popular with the federal government because i t had achieved unanimous, although temporary, acceptance among F i r s t Ministers i n 1971. (Somewhat sur p r i s i n g l y , i t was Quebec, not the West or the A t l a n t i c provinces, which eventually scotched the deal.) Why the formula was acceptable i n 1971 to premiers such as W.A.C. Bennett, who was the f i r s t premier to put forth the idea of B r i t i s h Columbia as a d i s t i n c t i v e region within Canada, remains something of a mystery. It i s also important to note that i t was the Alberta premier, Peter Lougheed, and not his counterpart from BC, who led the attack 3Milne,Tuq of War, p. 47 81 against what he termed second-class p r o v i n c i a l status and pushed for a more equitable amending formula (which would, i n turn, make future c o n s t i t u t i o n a l changes extremely d i f f i c u l t ) . In the end, only the Charter of Rights prevailed i n t h i s regard. The V i c t o r i a formula and many of Ottawa's proposed economic powers were not incorporated into the f i n a l c o n s t i t u t i o n a l agreement i n the f a l l of 1981. Milne concludes that, except for the major v i c t o r y of the Charter of Rights, Trudeau had f a i l e d i n his e f f o r t to return Canada to a nineteenth-century concept of federalism. S t i l l , the prime minister e f f e c t i v e l y c u r t a i l e d the p o s s i b i l i t y of federalism going the other way — i n the d i r e c t i o n , for example, best exemplified by BC's 1978 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l proposals. In retrospect, t h i s should not be surprising. The federal position, as noted e a r l i e r , had changed dramatically within a period of a few years; the federal government's c o n s t i t u t i o n a l f l e x i b i l i t y — apparent i n the 1978 document A Time f o r Action — was no longer v i s i b l e i n the 1980 and '81 t a l k s . In 1978, on the heels of A Time for Action and the accompanying B i l l C-60, the Trudeau government seemed f i n a l l y w i l l i n g to discuss the devolution of some federal powers; however, the p r o v i n c i a l governments balked, f e e l i n g that they could achieve even more concessions from Ottawa. After the 1980 federal e l e c t i o n , the L i b e r a l government no longer believed i t had to negotiate from a position of weakness. The pendulum had swung sharply i n the other d i r e c t i o n , and the revived Trudeau Liberals "embarked on a new age of confrontational 82 p o l i t i c s . . . [ i n which the con s t i t u t i o n was to be] the symbol, the spearhead, of a more assertive federal presence." 7 4 In A Time for Action, the national government's tur g i d prose suggested a re-ordered federalism with at least some accommodation for regional i n t e r e s t s , including a House of the Federation to replace the e x i s t i n g i n s t i t u t i o n (similar i n philosophy to the BC proposal). And i n the 1968 federal paper Federalism for the Future, there was, again, an acceptance of the need to accommodate, to some extent, the burgeoning provinces and t h e i r v i s i o n of a workable and successful federal system: "We must be prepared to consider new methods for bringing p r o v i n c i a l influence to bear on developing federal p o l i c i e s , and federal influence on developing p r o v i n c i a l p o l i c i e s , before decisions have f i n a l l y been taken." 7 5 Both of these federal papers were prepared while Trudeau was playing a central role i n orchestrating the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l strategy of the national government. It could be surmised, therefore, that the perceived accommodation to provincialism evident i n these papers was l i t t l e more than a strategic or r h e t o r i c a l exercise. At the time they were prepared, of course, nationalism i n Quebec was s t i l l a force to be reckoned with, and a referendum (which was supposedly fated to answer the question of Quebec's destiny once and for a l l ) was either not yet imagined or s t i l l on the horizon. Arguably, the federal government had to appear amenable to p r o v i n c i a l needs while the future of the country remained i n doubt. 7 4Sheppard and Valpy, pp. 20-23 7 5Federalism for the Future, p. 44 83 After the 1980 federal e l e c t i o n and the Quebec referendum, the scenario had been altered, and the provinces had l o s t t h e i r golden opportunity to exert change within the federation. Trudeau could again state bluntly what was already c l e a r l y d i s c e r n i b l e among p o l i t i c a l observers — that he was "diametrically opposed" to the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l visions espoused i n proposals such as the BC government's. The unalterable Trudeauist strategy had always been to strengthen and enhance the central government; the need to cloak t h i s i n the language of accommodation and c o n c i l i a t i o n vanished a f t e r the 1980 referendum. If necessary, Trudeau was w i l l i n g to make Ottawa more sensitive to regionalism, but not to the corresponding p r o v i n c i a l governments. 7 6 Conversely, i t can be argued that BC's assertion of regionhood was, i n part, a strategic attempt to undermine the federal L i b e r a l government's view that the p r o v i n c i a l governments do not, and should not, necessarily represent true regional i n t e r e s t s ; a strategic argument stating, i n essence, that p r o v i n c i a l governments a r t i c u l a t e regional concerns, using the rhetoric of a l i e n a t i o n i n order to serve t h e i r own (province-building) i n t e r e s t s . For t h i s reason, one must agree with academics such as Roger Gibbins who have argued that the 1981 accord w i l l be remembered for what i t f a i l e d to do; i t missed the opportunity to remedy the regional inequality inherent with the Canadian system. "From the perspective of regional p o l i t i c s , the Constitution Act can best be 7 6 C a i r n s , "Recent Federalist Constitutional Proposals: A Review Essay," p. 356 84 seen as a t r a g i c l o s t opportunity to organize regional c o n f l i c t out of the p o l i t i c a l system, or at least to re-order our i n s t i t u t i o n a l l i f e so that regional c o n f l i c t would be moderated and contained." 7 7 In t h i s regard, BC's proposal for Senate reform — the most s i g n i f i c a n t component i n i t s 1978 l i s t of key demands — f a l t e r e d p r e c i p i t o u s l y during the d i f f i c u l t i n t e r - p r o v i n c i a l discussions throughout the summer of 1980. With the central government c l e a r l y enunciating an antagonism toward p r o v i n c i a l i s t c o n s t i t u t i o n a l aspirations, and with the complexity of the task involved i n restructuring the upper chamber, negotiations to reform the Senate were soon shelved due to a lack of progress; obviously, Senate reform, regardless of any p l a u s i b i l i t y to the argument that substantial changes to the i n s t i t u t i o n would dampen regional cleavages, was probably considered part of a second-tier of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l propositions that were beyond the scope of discussions geared toward resolving the age-old and t o p - p r i o r i t y issues of p a t r i a t i o n and an appropriate amending formula. But even among the prime proposals on the 1980-81 agenda, B r i t i s h Columbia's quest for regional status within the federation was being given short s h r i f t . The proposed amending formula favoured by the federal government was the V i c t o r i a formula, which won, b r i e f l y , unanimous support of the provinces and the federal government i n 1971. Over the ensuing decade, however, the formula Gibbins, And No One Cheered, pp. 131-132 85 — unquestionably anachronistic today, given i t s central-Canadian chauvinism (Ontario and Quebec each would be afforded vetoes over c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change) — was quick to lose support amongst western provinces such as Alberta and BC. Gaining acceptance i n i t s place was an Alberta-inspired formula (later known as the Vancouver consensus) which, i n i t s provisions, allowed i n l i e u of unanimity, any province to opt out of future amendments. Although t h i s formula was more favourable to a l l the provinces, i t would a l l but k i l l BC's regional aspirations i f i t were accepted. BC, i n 1978, had put f o r t h a revamped V i c t o r i a formula that would provide the westernmost province with i t s f i f t h - r e g i o n status through an accompanying veto over future amendments along with four other "regional" e n t i t i e s (Ontario, Quebec, the p r a i r i e provinces, and A t l a n t i c Canada). BC's regional aspirations ultimately put i t at odds with i t s western (and At l a n t i c ) counterparts and probably contributed to the concept's quick demise during the negotiations of 1980 and 1981. In the end, however, the Vancouver consensus also f a i l e d , giving way to a more in c l u s i v e formula that requires unanimous p r o v i n c i a l consent on such matters as Senate reform and the composition of the Supreme Court of Canada. Other amendments require the approval of the federal government and seven of ten provinces with at least f i f t y percent of the population. 86 CONCLUSION REGIONALISM IN THE NEW CONSTITUTIONAL ERA Constitutional P o l i t i c s a f t e r 1982: A Brief Overview After 1982, the hapless, a n g s t - f i l l e d spectre known as Canadian Unity vanished for a half decade before returning to haunt the Canadian public during further rounds of negotiations i n 1987, 1990 and 1992. When i t reappeared, the phantom learned that the p o l i t i c a l landscape had changed. The Charter of Rights, for example, had entrenched within the p o l i t i c a l culture a new and broader c o n s t i t u t i o n a l process requiring the t r a d i t i o n a l p o l i t i c a l c l ass to bring on board newly-constitutionalized groups (minorities, women, aboriginals) that had either been ignored or spurned throughout pre-1982 discussions. This new sense of equality rights extended to the provinces, which had established t h e i r own, competing versions of equality, making i t exceedingly d i f f i c u l t to reach a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l agreement that allowed for the p a r a l l e l visions of the federation as fostered by Quebec and the Rest of Canada to intersect long enough to produce p o l i t i c a l peace; the f a i l u r e s of the Meech Lake and Charlottetown accords are i n some ways a testament to t h i s . The success of Alberta i n arguing against the notion of "second-class" provinces had become a cornerstone of co n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i t i c s i n the West, causing i n the process the marginalizing of BC's revamped 87 regional formula for Senate reform and i t s concomitant c a l l for regional status within the federation. In short, B r i t i s h Columbia's regional aspirations, generated from the p o l i t i c a l c l a s s rather than from any grass-roots movement, became anathema to BC's Western counterparts and t h e i r c o l l e c t i v e view of a country comprised of ten equal provinces. Also gone was the Western provinces' chief nemesis — the Trudeau government and i t s aggressive, c e n t r a l i z i n g pursuits. With a more consensus-oriented and Western-based Progressive Conservative government i n power, there were strong indications that provinces such as B r i t i s h Columbia would not be required to engage i n h o s t i l e t u r f wars with the national government. As the 1980s progressed, concerns about Western ali e n a t i o n were supplanted by a short period of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l remission. The fact that the search for a renewed federation had become subdued i n the West i n the post-Trudeau era was evident when, i n 1986, the F i r s t Ministers agreed to return to the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l table not to address the unanswered questions regarding regional influence at the centre, but to bring Quebec into the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l f o l d with a "Quebec round" of negotiations. Pandora's Box was reopened, and Canada's future as a country remains an open question. The BC Government. Regional Status, and Senate Reform Before concluding my analysis of B r i t i s h Columbia's quest for regional status, i t seems necessary to b r i e f l y examine the issue's most recent incarnation. Late i n 1995, following a t e r r i f y i n g l y 88 close c a l l for f e d e r a l i s t s i n the second Quebec referendum on sovereignty, the L i b e r a l government i n Ottawa — appearing hobbled by a number of hasty promises i t made to Quebeckers i n the l a s t days of the campaign — introduced l e g i s l a t i o n designed to provide Quebec with what was purportedly a veto over a l l future c o n s t i t u t i o n a l changes. The question of r e g i o n a l / p r o v i n c i a l equality was therefore brought to the forefront of the national- unity debate. The federal government had proved once again that, i n the world of Canadian p o l i t i c s , a noble act of c o n t r i t i o n can be quickly transformed into a harrowing minefield of acrimony and c o n s t i t u t i o n a l brinkmanship. 7 8 The Myth-Making Power of Government Having chronicled B r i t i s h Columbia's f a i l e d attempt to obtain regional status within the constitution, I w i l l now return to the significance of myths and myth-making i n Canadian c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p o l i t i c s : Was BC's position on c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change affected by i t s lack of credible myths, and did the p r o v i n c i a l government's pragmatic approach i n h i b i t the promotion of such myths? I mentioned / B I t was during t h i s national debate that the issue of BC's regional status rose to prominence. BC was dismayed to f i n d that the Chretien government had — r e p r i s i n g the 1971 V i c t o r i a formula — grouped i t with the P r a i r i e provinces as part of a regional veto, while Quebec and Ontario each had i t s own veto. A f t e r protests from the BC government and the federal Reform party, the national government acquiesced by granting BC i t s own veto. Of course, i t was only a 'de facto' veto i n the sense that Ottawa was pledging to use i t s constitutionally-entrenched veto to block any changes that were disagreeable to regions not i n a p o s i t i o n to block such changes with t h e i r own c o n s t i t u t i o n a l veto. 89 i n Chapter One that BC's p r o v i n c i a l p o l i t i c i a n s have gained a w e l l - founded reputation for pragmatism on a l l issues, while paying p a r t i c u l a r attention to economic growth and development. The issue of BC's role and place within Confederation had been considered by i t s p o l i t i c i a n s as something unchangeable — at least u n t i l the onset of paradigm-shifting provincialism beginning i n the mid- seventies. That transformation brought with i t demands from BC for regional status. These demands, however, were seriously hurt by the d i s t i n c t lack of h i s t o r i c , grass-roots support among the province's c i t i z e n r y for such a concept. Had the people of BC been the impetus behind the creation of such a concept, i t s fate at the hands of Canada's f i r s t ministers might have been much d i f f e r e n t . The BC government's r e g i o n a l i s t aims rested on the argument that the province's economic strength, geographical uniqueness, and burgeoning population constituted a separate and d i s t i n c t region i n Canada and necessitated increased p o l i t i c a l power and influence. B r i t i s h Columbia's problem was one of c r e d i b i l i t y ; the fact that i t had to point out and explain i t s regional self-image to the other p o l i t i c a l players indicated the weakness of i t s attempt at myth making. Myths, as I mentioned i n the introduction, become commonly accepted only a f t e r a lengthy period of gestation. A gap i n c r e d i b i l i t y , i f I may put i t that way, i s p r e c i s e l y what was wrong with BC's quest for regional status i n the 1970s and early '80s. The BC government's c a l l for regionhood rang hollow because one cannot create myths out of a i r ; they must have 90 a chance to i n f i l t r a t e the psychological makeup of a people or society. Had e a r l i e r generations of p r o v i n c i a l p o l i t i c i a n s not been so pragmatic, had they not been so i s o l a t i o n i s t i n the arena of f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l r e l a t i o n s , they might have served t h e i r c i t i z e n r y much better. For the bottom-line issues that t h i s regional quest was t r y i n g to redress d i d hold a considerable degree of merit. B r i t i s h Columbia has been under-represented i n Ottawa, i n both houses of parliament. Its status as a 'have' province have meant that the province's economic strength has benefitted less fortunate parts of the federation without any adjoining increase i n p o l i t i c a l influence outside of i t s won p r o v i n c i a l border. One must concur with Roger Gibbins's declaration that the 1981 c o n s t i t u t i o n a l accord represented a "tragic l o s t opportunity" to mend regional cleavages. The pragmatic thrust of policy-making prominent throughout BC's history, with i t s modern emphasis on economic development, has provided the province with many tangible benefits, but l i t t l e i n the manner of a coherent c o n s t i t u t i o n a l platform that would have paved the way to regional status at most, or, at l e a s t , enhanced influence at the national centre. Of course, the nature of f e d e r a l - p r o v i n c i a l relations also played a role i n t h i s . P r i o r to the 1960s BC had l i t t l e to get anxious about i n Ottawa — the province controlled i t s economic destiny, and t h i s fact strongly influenced to the isolationism of B r i t i s h Columbia's premiers. I t was the advent of economic nationalism and government intervention — as personified by Pierre Trudeau and his federal L i b e r a l s — 91 that f i r s t caused BC's p r o v i n c i a l p o l i t i c i a n s to look outward at Canada's p o l i t i c a l structure and c a l l for reform; i t was Quebec separatism that provided the opportunity. The regional aspirations espoused i n d e t a i l i n the BC government's 1978 proposals most c l e a r l y enunciate the end of the province's isolationism. But the contrived language apparent i n parts of the document betrays i t s province-building bottom l i n e . When these wide-ranging proposals were unleashed on an unsuspecting public i n the la t e seventies, i t seemed that no one — from the other provinces to BC's own electorate — quite knew what to make of BC' s argument that i t deserved a formalized regional status within the federation. It i s testimony to the myth-making power of governments that i n 1996, nearly three decades a f t e r W.A.C. Bennett f i r s t raised the notion of a Region of B r i t i s h Columbia, the federal government took the f i r s t concrete steps toward recognizing the propriety of such a concept. Although Ottawa's veto package must be taken with a grain of s a l t and accepted as an exercise i n p o l i t i c a l expediency, there i s l i t t l e doubt that i t w i l l add to the strength of BC's desire for regional status over the long term. Thus, the myth of regionhood has perhaps turned a f a t e f u l corner. If i t has, i t has been aided by more than the p r o v i n c i a l government's myth-making a b i l i t y . Its 'gap i n c r e d i b i l i t y ' has c e r t a i n l y been diminished by the on-going and seemingly unending Quebec question which has frustrated B r i t i s h Columbians. And t h i s f r u s t r a t i o n has been made more palpable by the fact that, over the past few decades, the province's population and economic clout have 92 grown while i t s p o l i t i c a l influence within the country's national i n s t i t u t i o n s has not. S t i l l , one question remains. Do BC's aspirations for regionhood hold v a l i d i t y ? On the whole, the answer i s no. The 1978 proposal for regional status would have provided the province with an influence i n Ottawa that does not b e f i t i t s population. It may be the t h i r d most populous province i n Canada, but i t s population s t i l l f a l l s far short of Ontario's and Quebec's. BC does not yet deserve the degree of representation and influence at the centre that i t would have been accorded by i t s 1978 proposals. Certainly, provinces such as Alberta would not stand to be subordinated regi o n a l l y i n such a reformed Senate. And yet, the issue of regional influence (or lack of) i n Ottawa must s t i l l be addressed. It seems reasonable to assume that, given the potential for the myth of regionhood to assimilate into the p o l i t i c a l mainstream over the next number of years, and given the prospect of future population growth, BC's regional aspirations may well become r e a l i t y within the next half-century or so. 93 BIBLIOGRAPHY Bennett, William R., "Canada: A B r i t i s h Columbia Perspective," i n Waris Shere, ed., Miracles of Survival: Canada and French Canada(Smithtown, NY: Exposition Press, 1981) Blake, Donald E., "Managing the Periphery: B r i t i s h Columbia and the National P o l i t i c a l Community," i n P a t r i c i a E. Roy, ed., A History of B r i t i s h Columbia: Selected Readings(Toronto: Copp Clark Pitman Ltd., 1989) B r i t i s h Columbia, Government of, B r i t i s h Columbia's Constitutional Proposals: Presented to the F i r s t Ministers' Conference on the Constitution(October, 1978) B r i t i s h Columbia, Government of, presentation by the Hon. William R. Bennett, Premier of B r i t i s h Columbia ( V i c t o r i a : November 1976) Cairns, Alan C , "Constitutional Minoritarianism i n Canada," i n Canada: The State of the Federation. 1990, Ronald Watts and Douglas Brown, eds. (Kingston: Institute of Intergovernmental Relations, Queen's University, 1990) Cairns, Alan C , Disruptions: Constitutional Struggles, from the Charter to Meech Lake(Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1991) Cairns, Alan C , "Recent Federalist Constitutional Proposals: A Review Essay," i n Canadian Public Policy no. 5 (Summer 1979), pp. 348-365. Canada, Government of, A Time for Action: Toward the Renewal of the Canadian Federation(Ottawa: 1978) Canada, Government of, The 1987 Constitutional Accord: The Report of the Special Joint Committee of the Senate and the House of Commons(Ottawa: 1987) Canada, Government of, Federalism for the Future: A Statement of Poli c y by the Government of Canada(Ottawa: 1968) Canada, Government of, The Special Joint Committee of the Senate and the House of Commons on the Constitution of Canada (Ottawa: 1972) Canada, Task Force on Canadian Unity, A Future Together: Observations and Recommendations (Ottawa: 1979) 94 BIBLIOGRAPHY ( c o n ' t ) Canadian Bar Association, Towards a New Canada (Montreal: 1978) Clarkson, Stephen and Chr i s t i n a McCall, Trudeau and our Times: Volume One: The Magnificent Obsession (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1990) Dunn, Sheilagh M., ed., The Year i n Review 1981: Intergovernmental Relations i n Canada (Kingston: Queen's University, 1982) Dupre, J . Stefan, and Paul C. Weiler, "A Sense of Proportion and a Sense of P r i o r i t i e s : Reflections on the Report of the Task Force on Canadian Unity," i n Canadian Bar Review v o l . LV11 (1979), pp. 446- 471 Elton, David and Peter McCormick, Alternatives 1980: The Basic Issues i n Constitutional Reform (Banff: Canada West Foundation, November 1980) Gibbins, Roger, "Constitutional P o l i t i c s and the West," i n And No One Cheered: Federalism, Democracy and the Constitution Act, Keith Banting and Richard Simeon, eds. (Toronto: Methuen, 1983) Gibbins, Roger, Regionalism: T e r r i t o r i a l P o l i t i c s i n Canada and the United States (Toronto: Butterworths, 1982) Milne, David, The Canadian Constitution (Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 1991) Milne, David, Tug of War: Ottawa and the Provinces Under Trudeau and Mulroney (Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 1986) M i t c h e l l , David J., WAC Bennett and the Rise of B r i t i s h Columbia (Vancouver/Toronto: Douglas & Mclntyre, 1983) Ormsby, Margaret, B r i t i s h Columbia: A History (Toronto: MacMillan, 1958) Page, Tim, "Perceptions from the West: B r i t i s h Columbia i n the Evolving Patterns of Canadian Federalism," i n J . Clarke and S.F. Wise, eds., Occasional Papers (Ottawa: Inst i t u t e of Canadian Studies, Carleton University, F a l l 1982) Persky, Stan, Bennett I I : The Decline & Stumbling of S o c i a l Credit Government i n B r i t i s h Columbia 1979-83 (Vancouver: New Star Books, 1983) 95 BIBLIOGRAPHY f c o n ' t ) Resnick, P h i l i p , "B.C. Capitalism and the Empire of the P a c i f i c , " i n B.C. Studies no. 67 (Autumn 1985), pp. 29-46. Russell, Peter H., Constitutional Odyssey: Can Canadians Become a Sovereign People (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1992) Sheppard, Robert and Michael Valpy, The National Deal: The Fight for a Canadian Constitution (Toronto: Fleet Books, 1982) Sherman, Paddy, Bennett (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart Limited, 1966) Smiley, Donald V., "A Dangerous Deed: The Constitution Act, 1982," i n And No One Cheered: Federalism, Democracy and the Constitution Act, Keith Banting and Richard Simeon, eds. (Toronto: Methuen, 1983) Smiley, Donald V., Canada i n Question: Federalism i n the Eighties 3rd E d i t i o n (Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson Ltd., 1980) Smiley, Donald V. and Ronald L. Watts, Intrastate Federalism i n Canada (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1985) Young, Robert, ed., Constitution i n C r i s i s (Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 1991) wp

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