Download The Limits of Participation: Members And Leaders in Canada's by Faron Ellis PDF

By Faron Ellis

This is often the single book-length research of Reform occasion activists and early individuals. Outlining key levels in get together evolution, reminiscent of the recruitment of activists into the celebration and the hunt for a countrywide profile, this can be the 1st complete background of Reform get together improvement. it's a specified examine of the grassroots phenomenon that was once the Reform occasion and is the single systematic research of its evolving constitutional and organizational efforts. The publication is an engaging glimpse of a political occasion trying to bridge the participatory calls for of its contributors and the strategic plans of its leaders in a bid to safe nationwide political energy.

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2 • Financial Contributions to Reform Party, 1989–1999 (thousands of dollars) 32 • T HE L IMITS P ARTICIPATION The Founding – 1987 to 1989 • 33 The original Reform constitution allowed members to initiate referenda of the general membership by submitting a petition signed by 15 per cent of the members. 35 That this provision was never used suggests that the party never faced a membership revolt severe enough to necessitate the initiation of the referendum clause. This is not to imply that the party was free of conflict or significant skirmishes between the members and the leadership.

Under these conditions, none of the parties could legitimately claim to be a truly national party, at least not in the sense of geographical competitiveness. As the major parties increasingly focused their attention on the large number of votes in Central Canada, when Ontario-Quebec interests conflicted with those of the West, as they frequently did during the 1970s and 1980s, the Liberals made a series of strategic choices that were viewed by many westerners as deliberate attempts to not only exclude western concerns from within the governing coalition, but to blatantly exploit western concerns as a wedge to shore up Liberal support in Central Canada.

19 Social Credit championed Albertans’ Introduction • 11 discontent with the National Policy and its agents, the central-Canadiandominated federal parties. With control of the government in Alberta, Social Credit premier William Aberhart could go further than the Progressives in challenging Ottawa on the fundamentals of the federal political order. 20 Aberhart echoed and then accelerated the Progressives’ alienationdriven demands for reform. Although the transfer of natural resource rights to the prairie provinces in 1930 marked the formal end of colonial status for these provinces, many Social Credit supporters still believed that political and economic imperialism continued.

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