We had some meetings during our trip to Ottawa that gave our brains a bit of a work out. They forced us to think about our political institutions, what they were designed to do, and how well they fulfill that role today.
One of these meetings was with Senate Clerk Charles Robert. Given the recent media attention the Upper House has been receiving, and the debates about Senate reform, our meeting came at a particularly salient time.
Mr.Robert provided us with an overview of the history and evolution of the Senate chamber in Canada. We then engaged in an interesting and very animated discussion about the functions the Senate performs today, as well as the potential positive and negative impacts different reforms to the Senate could have. We were lucky to have an extremely knowledgable Senate expert at our disposal for an hour, and he really did inspire some sober second thoughts!