Government Elections

Establish an independent commission to organize leaders’ debates.

Liberal Platform Page 27 October 5, 2015
Achieved
Oct 2018

Feds tap former GG to be new arms-length leaders’ debates commissioner

CTV News October 30, 2018

The federal government is appointing former Governor General David Johnston to be Canada’s first-ever independent commissioner of televised leaders’ debates during federal elections, moving to take political arm wrestling out of the equation.

Democratic Institutions Minister Karina Gould made the announcement Tuesday morning, as she unveiled the new non-partisan process for organizing federal leaders’ debates for the 2019 campaign. This new commission, led by Johnston, will also include a seven-member advisory board that he is expected to create by spring 2019.

As part of the new rules, parties looking to put their leader in the debates need to meet two of these three criteria: 1) having at least one MP elected at the time the election is called 2) intend to run candidates in at least 90 per cent of electoral districts 3) obtained four per cent of the vote in the last campaign, or have a "legitimate chance" to win seats in the upcoming election, based on public opinion and polling data

Sep 2018

Trudeau Liberals setting up new body to organize federal leaders’ debates

Global News September 19, 2018

The Trudeau government has been quietly working on a new body to organize leaders’ debates in federal elections, which it plans to have up and running by next year’s vote.

And while a senior official says the Liberals will unveil specific details in the coming weeks, concerns are already being raised about whether the new entity will be truly independent and impartial.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised during the 2015 campaign, when the issue became a political football, to create an arm’s-length body to organize future leaders’ debates.

Jan 2018

Government aims to have independent body organize leaders’ debates by 2019

Winnipeg Free Press January 11, 2018

The Trudeau government intends to create an independent body to organize leaders’ debates during federal elections — and hopes to have it in place in time for the 2019 campaign.

Democratic Institutions Minister Karina Gould is inviting people to provide ideas for how an arm’s-length, election debate commissioner or commission should work.

Gould says the goal is to have an independent commissioner or commission in place before the next federal election in 2019. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised during the 2015 campaign, when the issue became a political football, to create an independent body to organize future leaders’ debates.