Canadian Senators Group
Groupe des sénateurs canadiens
LeaderScott Tannas
Deputy LeaderDennis Patterson
FoundedNovember 4, 2019
Split fromIndependent Senators Group, Conservative Party of Canada
Technical group
13 / 105
Party flag
Logo of the Canadian Senators Group.png

The Canadian Senators Group (French: Groupe des sénateurs canadiens) is a parliamentary group of senators in the Senate of Canada founded on November 4, 2019, by eight senators from the Independent Senators Group, two from the Conservative Party of Canada's Senate caucus, and one non-affiliated senator.[1] The group named Scott Tannas as its interim leader and Josée Verner as interim deputy leader, though the actual caucus leadership roles and role titles have yet to be announced.[2]


The caucus was formed on November 4, 2019.

In an interview with CTV News' Don Martin, Tannas said that the motivation for him and at least several other senators to depart the ISG was a perceived lack of independence in the contentious spring 2019 legislation related to west coast oil tanker moratoriums and other oil and gas-related legislation.[2] Additionally, Tannas cited the concern that the Independent Senators Group, then numbering 58 Senators, had become too large, and that a "wider range of views and approaches" was needed.[2] In addition, in an effort to avoid "groupthink", CSG interim leader Senator Scott Tannas announced that the initial founding members of the group had agreed to cap membership in the group to no more than 25 members.[3][4] Also included among the reasons for the founding of a second, non-partisan, and independent Senate caucus was a perennially renewed effort to focus on regional issues, despite this notionally being the constitutionally-enshrined purpose of the Senate as a whole.[4][3]

Included among those decamping to the Canadian Senators Group was Elaine McCoy, who previously served as the ISG's founding facilitator from 2016 to 2017.[5]

On November 18, 2019, two more senators joined the CSG: Percy Downe, formerly of the Progressive Senate Group and Senate Liberal Caucus; and Jean-Guy Dagenais, a Conservative. Downe said he still supported the Liberal Party but liked the "diversity of views" in the CSG; while Dagenais cited disagreements with the leadership of Andrew Scheer, particularly Scheer's social views and the "low importance" he placed on Quebec, as the reasons for his defection.[6][7][8]

On February 4, 2022, Dennis Patterson joined the CSG, departing the Conservative caucus. The "last straw" was disappointment that members of the party weren't condemning the Freedom Convoy.[9][10]

On August 4, 2022, Larry Smith left the Conservative caucus to join the CSG. Smith clarified that he would remain a member of the Conservative Party.[11]


Deputy Leader


Name[1] Province (Division)[12] Former political affiliation Mandatory retirement date[5]
Robert Black Ontario Independent Senators Group 27 March 2037
Larry Campbell British Columbia Independent Senators Group 28 February 2023
Jean-Guy Dagenais Quebec (Victoria) Conservative 2 February 2025
Percy Downe Prince Edward Island Progressive Senate Group 8 July 2029
Stephen Greene Nova Scotia (Halifax - The Citadel) Independent Senators Group 8 December 2024
Dennis Patterson Nunavut Conservative 30 December 2023
Jim Quinn New Brunswick Non-affiliated 25 January 2032
David Richards New Brunswick Non-affiliated 17 October 2025
Larry Smith Quebec (Saurel) Conservative 28 April 2026
Scott Tannas Alberta Conservative 25 February 2037
Josée Verner Quebec (Montarville) Independent Senators Group 30 December 2034
Pamela Wallin Saskatchewan Independent Senators Group 10 April 2028
Vernon White Ontario Conservative 21 February 2034

Former members

Name Province (Division) Former political affiliation Left caucus Reason
Elaine McCoy Alberta Independent Senators Group 29 December 2020 Died in office
Doug Black Alberta Independent Senators Group 31 October 2021 Resigned from Senate
Diane Griffin Prince Edward Island Independent Senators Group 18 March 2022 Mandatory retirement from the Senate

See also


  1. ^ a b Flanagan, Ryan (4 November 2019). "11 senators break away to form new Canadian Senators Group". CTV News. Retrieved 5 November 2019.
  2. ^ a b c Martin, Don (4 November 2019). "Tannas on Wexit and Western Alienation". Power Play with Don Martin. CTV News. Retrieved 5 November 2019.
  3. ^ a b "New Senate group forms to push regional interests in a fractured Parliament". Red Deer Advocate. The Canadian Press. 4 November 2019. Retrieved 5 November 2019.
  4. ^ a b Jesse Snyder; Brian Platt (4 November 2019). "New Senate bloc looking to protect 'regional interests' could hamper Trudeau's efforts to pass legislation". National Post. Retrieved 5 November 2019.
  5. ^ a b "Senators List". Senate of Canada. August 25, 2019. Archived from the original on August 1, 2019. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  6. ^ Tasker, John Paul (18 November 2019). "Two more senators defect to upstart group, one citing Scheer's leadership". CBC News. Retrieved 18 November 2019.
  7. ^ Gilmore, Rachel (November 18, 2019). "Senator leaves Conservative caucus citing Scheer's socially conservative views". CTVNews.
  8. ^ "Tory Senator Ditches Caucus Over Scheer's Views On Abortion, Gay Marriage". HuffPost. November 18, 2019. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  9. ^ Al-Hakim, Aya (4 February 2022). "Nunavut senator Dennis Patterson quits Conservative caucus: 'This country is divided'". Global News. Toronto ON. Retrieved 21 February 2022.
  10. ^ Pelletier, Jeff (4 February 2022). "Patterson quits Conservatives over Freedom Convoy ties". Nunatsiaq News. Iqaluit NU: Nortext Publishing Corporation (Iqaluit). Retrieved 22 February 2022.
  11. ^ Major, Darren (2022-08-04). "Quebec senator leaving Conservative caucus but says he will remain a member of party". CBC News.
  12. ^ Juric, Sam (4 November 2019). "P.E.I.'s Diane Griffin named to Canadian Senators Group". CBC News. Retrieved 4 November 2019.