The Governor General and the Prime Minister

An anonymous government official explains why the Governor General wasn’t in the room for yesterday’s meeting between the Prime Minister and First Nations leaders.

Harper’s team did finally instruct the Governor General to hold a ceremonial meeting Friday evening at Rideau Hall. But there was no question of involving Johnston directly in the meetings themselves.

“Our real bottom line was that it couldn’t be the same meeting because that line can’t get blurred,” said the official. “We’re the ones responsible here, we’re the ones that can act and have to act. Not the Governor General. There’s nothing he can do constitutionally, so we didn’t want to give that impression.”

Here again is Emmett Macfarlane’s analysis of the demand that the Governor General be present.