KING-BYNG AFFAIR PDF

Last Edited March 4, The King-Byng Affair was a Canadian constitutional crisis pitting the powers of a prime minister against the powers of a governor general. The King-Byng Affair was a Canadian constitutional crisis pitting the powers of a prime minister against the powers of a governor general. Byng refused. It ended with King winning an eventual election, and no governor general ever again publicly refusing the advice of a prime minister. King , the Liberal leader and prime minister of the previous Parliament, declined to turn power over to the Conservatives but instead met with the House of Commons to let Parliament decide who should govern, as was his right.

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Last Edited March 4, The King-Byng Affair was a Canadian constitutional crisis pitting the powers of a prime minister against the powers of a governor general.

The King-Byng Affair was a Canadian constitutional crisis pitting the powers of a prime minister against the powers of a governor general. Byng refused. It ended with King winning an eventual election, and no governor general ever again publicly refusing the advice of a prime minister. King , the Liberal leader and prime minister of the previous Parliament, declined to turn power over to the Conservatives but instead met with the House of Commons to let Parliament decide who should govern, as was his right.

The new House, largely due to the support of the Progressives, backed the minority Liberal government. Their support lasted until 25 June , when Parliament defeated a motion to remove censure from a no confidence motion against the King government.

Before that happened, however, King asked the governor general to dissolve Parliament and call fresh elections. A request for dissolution while a motion of censure was under debate was unprecedented. Byng instead asked the opposition Conservatives—the largest single party in the House—to form a government under Arthur Meighen. Meighen Becomes Prime Minister King resigned and informed Parliament he was no longer prime minister. Arthur Meighen and his Conservatives formed a minority government.

At the time, if a Member of Parliament was appointed to a cabinet post he had to resign his seat and seek re-election in a by-election. But Meighen did not take this approach. He gave up his own seat, but named fellow Conservatives as acting ministers, or ministers without portfolio, meaning, in his view, that they did not need to resign. King and the Liberals argued he was wrong: if the new ministers were to legally run their departments, they must first resign; if they did not hold office legally, then they had no right to govern.

The Conservatives held onto the government through four successful parliamentary votes, including one to censure the previous King government, but they lost a fifth vote.

Meighen asked Byng for a dissolution and an election. Byng granted his request. King Wins Election The election was called for 14 September Meighen campaigned by accusing the Liberals of corruption and maladministration. King ran largely on the constitutional issue; what he framed as the interference by a British governor general with the rights of Canadians to govern themselves. The Progressives and others had 26 seats. The Liberals would govern until the election. Constitutional Reform The King-Byng Affair played a role in the Imperial Conference of , which began to put legal substance behind the Balfour Report declaration that Britain and the Dominions were constitutionally "equal in status.

It clarified the powers of Dominion parliaments and granted the Dominions full legal freedom except in those areas where they chose to remain subordinate. Canadian governors general would hereafter always follow the advice of the Canadian prime minister.

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Affaire King-Byng

Strictly speaking, this was not a coalition government , as the Progressives were not given any Cabinet seats and were thus not a part of the government. Rather, it was to a considerable extent a continuation of the arrangement that had existed since the general election. King, whose government nominally oscillated between being a bare majority and a minority in the 14th Parliament , had come to rely on the relative lack of unity in the Progressive ranks to keep his premiership secure. The Liberals were therefore confident this arrangement could continue even though they were no longer the largest party. Furthermore, Progressive MPs themselves were not in a position to accept cabinet appointments - at the time, new ministers were required by law to resign their seats and seek re-election in a by-election.

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King-Byng Affair

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