The Soap Box Blog

Till Elections Do Us Part: What makes a government coalition work? A Canadian-European dialogue

In the aftermath of the ill-fated attempt to force the minority Conservatives from power and form a coalition government in Canada in December, 2008, the media spin has been amazing, and it has worked. The number of Canadians we meet who believe that a government needs a majority to be able to get anything done astounds us.

The majority of nations around the world function very well with coalitions, with a constant culture of compromise and consensus-making. This, to us, seems like a far more ethical and broader-based manner of government, one in which minority views have a place.

In an effort to help Canadians understand how beneficial coalitions can be (remember Medicare in the 1960s?), the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives hosted a conference on the topic in March, 2009. Video footage is online, broken up into segments of the various panel discussions. Very helpful indeed!

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