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Co-operation of French & English in the 1840s

When Canada was in the process of achieving responsible government: a system of government in which the executive (law makers) must have the confidence (support) of a majority in the elected legislative assembly.responsible government, both French and English leaders worked together for that end. In one election French-Canadian reformer, Louis LaFontaine, lost his seat in Lower Canada (also known as Canada East), so the English-Canadian reform leader, Robert Baldwin, offered him a safe seat in Upper Canada (also known as Canada West) which he won.

A couple of years later, Baldwin lost his seat and LaFontaine returned the favour, finding him a safe seat in Lower Canada. So, for awhile, we had a situation in Upper & Lower Canadawhich the attorney general for Lower Canada was representing English-speaking Upper Canadians and the attorney general for Upper Canada was sitting as the member for a French-speaking constituency in Lower Canada.

This co-operation between French and English in Canadian politics has been characteristic of successful governments in Canada since the 1840s.


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