Member of Parliament

Yet, notwithstanding its appeal to democratic purists, many authorities argue that the delegate conception of the MP’s representative function is inadequate for a number of reasons, and particularly because it denies the “plural” nature of Canadian society. Most constituencies are socially, politically and economically mixed, so that MPs are frequently elected with less than an absolute majority of the electors’ votes. Given the many concerns with which MPs must deal — often urgently — it is impossible for them to return to their constituents for instructions or to hold a plebiscite on every issue. The delegate approach assumes that Parliament is nothing more than the sum of its parts — a forum for warring local factions — and the national good, by extension, a mere amalgamation of factional interests.