OTTAWA, Tuesday, February 6, 2001

The Senate Committee of Selection met this day at 5:40 p.m., pursuant to rule 88 of the Rules of the Senate, for the purpose of choosing a Chairman; and, pursuant to rule 85(1) of the Rules of the Senate, for the nomination of a senator to preside as Speaker pro tempore and for the nomination of senators to serve on several select committees during the present session.


Mr. Blair Armitage, Acting Clerk of the Committee: Honourable senators, I see a quorum. According to my list, there are a couple of members who are not here. Also, there are quite a few of you who are visiting this committee. If there is any confusion as to who is a member and who is not a member, please feel free to consult the table. I have a list of the full membership.

Senator Austin: Perhaps you could read the list of members.

Mr. Armitage: The following senators, in alphabetical order, are members of the committee at this moment: Honourable Senators Austin, Corbin, Fairbairn, Kinsella, Kirby, LeBreton, Lynch-Staunton, Mercier and Murray.

Senator Kirby: Honourable senators, who is sitting in for Senator Murray?

Senator Robertson: I am.

Mr. Armitage: I do not have receipt of that notice.

Senator Robertson: It will be here shortly.

Mr. Armitage: Pursuant to rule 88, it is my responsibility to proceed directly to the election of chairman. Are there any nominations?

Senator Austin: I move that Senator Mercier be Chairman of the Senate Committee of Selection.

Senator Kirby: I see only two voting members opposite. As I understand it, there are some discussions going on at the present moment. I am reluctant to proceed in the absence of either Senator Lynch-Staunton or Senator Kinsella.

Mr. Armitage: I would be happy to stand down for a length of time.

Senator Austin: I have no objection.

The committee was suspended.

Upon resuming at 5:50 p.m.

Mr. Armitage: Honourable senators, I believe the moment that we have been waiting for has arrived. I have just received confirmation that Senator Robertson has been substituted for Senator Murray. The list as amended earlier stands.

I am now ready to receive nomination for chairman.

Senator Austin: I move the election of Senator Mercier as Chairman of the Senate Committee of Selection.

Mr. Armitage: Any other motions? If not, is it agreed, honourable senators, that Senator Mercier take the chair?

Hon. Senators: Agreed.

Mr. Armitage: Carried. Senator Mercier, please take the chair.

Senator Léonce Mercier (Chairman) in the Chair.


The Chairman: Honourable Senators, I am honoured to accept this nomination. Pursuant to Rule 85(1)(a) of the Senator, I am now prepared to receive nominations for a senator to preside as Speaker pro tempore.

Senator Kinsella: Mr. Chairman, I move that Senator Rose-Marie Losier-Cool be appointed Speaker pro tempore.

The Chairman: Agreed?

Hon. Senators: Agreed.

The Chairman: Motion agreed to.

The next item of business is for someone to move that the Chair report the name of the Speaker pro tempore to the Senate.

Senator Kinsella: I so move.

The Chairman: Agreed?

Hon. Senators: Agreed.


Senator Kirby: I move that we adjourn until 12:30 tomorrow.

Senator Robichaud: To the call of the chair.


The Chairman: It is moved that the Committee of Selection meet here again tomorrow at 12:30 p.m.


We are reconvening at 12:30 tomorrow at the same place.

Senator Lynch-Staunton: It is no secret that we have an impasse with respect to the composition of each committee in terms of numbers of members. There have been some informal discussions, and I have reason to believe that we can come to some sort of agreement.

The leadership will meet tomorrow at 11:45. Whether everything can be resolved in 45 minutes, I am not prepared to say. I would prefer that we adjourn to the call of the chair, sometime tomorrow, whether it is 12:30, 1 o'clock or 3:30. We would not be under a short deadline of 45 minutes. If the matter can be resolved tomorrow, that will be the end of it. The committee can take whatever decision it wants before the end of the day.

Senator Kirby: Senator Lynch-Staunton, I have no problem with that. We will adjourn to the call of the chair, then, sometime tomorrow.

The Chairman: Is it agreed, honourable senators?

Hon. Senators: Agreed.

The committee adjourned.

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