Legislation is an important process of any democratic nation. This essay will demonstrate the legislative differences between two democratic nations –Canada and the United States.Although many people consider Canada and the United States to be very similar nations, they have very different legislative process, each with its own pros and cons. In order to illustrate these differences we will be following a money bill through both the Canadian and American systems of government.
When a bill is passed through the entire legislative system, all three constituents of the government are involved: The House of Commons, the Senate, and The Governor General. If a bill has passed through all of these bodies it then becomes law.
A bill starts in the House of Commons where a Minister or Member of Parliamentfirst introduces it. Once it is in the House of Commons it begins thefirst phase of legislation.
The First reading acts as an introduction to the bill. During this stage the title of the bill is announced, followed by a brief description of the contents in the bill. At this stage the bill is tabled, printed and made public. All bills are automatically passed through this stage without debate, or questioning.
The second reading is the most important stage in the legislative process. During the second reading the bill is debated by the Members of Parliament. All debates are limited to the principle of the bill. This means that Members can only debate whether or not they agree on the bill's overall intent. At this time, the Opposition argues their positions. The Opposition members’ comments usually reflect the consensus of their party caucus. Opposition parties often suggest an alternative to the bill rather than speak in favour of it. Whether the opposition supports the bill or not, its members will want to speak in order to put their position on the public record.
At the end of the second reading debate, the S…