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Political System

Canada Immigration: Government and Political System

Canada is what is known as a "Democratic Federation" with both Federal and Provincial levels of Government. Responsibilities and powers are divided between the federal branch and its provincial executives. Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is a department of the government of Canada.

The government of Canada and the Canadian political system are quite complex and is based loosely on British Westminster system. The system Canada follows today was initially drafted by the "Fathers of Confederation" in 1864, and became law in 1867 when the constitution act was passed. The Act gave executive authority to the Queen of England (UK), which made Canada a sovereign constitutional monarchy.

The Federal Government has the power to create laws for the peace, order, and responsible government of Canada. This includes federal jurisdictions such as international policies, defense, immigration, criminal caw, customs and border control. The Provincial Governments are responsible for healthcare, education, driver licensing and registrations, among other items.

The Canadian political establishment is centered in Ottawa, Canada's capital, in a building called "The House of Commons". Government officials called "Members of Parliament" (MPs) are elected by the people to represent their interests and deliberate on various national issues affecting Canadians.

The Canadian government is divided into constituencies. The candidate with the most votes in the region they represent (riding) wins the authority to act in the best interests of the riding by taking their "seat" in Parliament.

The provincial political systems are based on the same doctrine as its federal counterpart. The Provincial Governments are referred to as "Legislative Assemblies" and the Queen's representative in the Assembly is the called the "Lieutenant Governor". Generally, every four or five years an election is called by the reigning Premier. Pending the results of the election, the Lieutenant Governor will ask the leader of the party with the most "seats" to become the Premier of the Province and form the Government.

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