How the Senate Works
All bills must pass through the Senate in order to become law. Most bills originate in the House of Commons, but Senators also initiate legislation from time to time. In addition, Senators regularly undertake in-depth committee studies on topics of importance to Canada and Canadians.
Senate proceedings are presided over by the Speaker of the Senate who is appointed by the Prime Minister. The Leader of the Government in the Senate is also appointed by the Prime Minister, while the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate is appointed by the Opposition Leader in the House of Commons. Read more
Almost all Senators sit as a member of either the government or the opposition caucus. Three currently sit as independent Senators. Voting patterns generally follow along party lines, although there is a tradition of more independence in the Senate.