The Influence of Liberal Ideas in Lower Canada Constitutional Act 1791 1791: Time for Change… Again British colonists (including the Loyalists) were unhappy with the situation in Quebec. They wanted changes, including a legislative assmembly. This would give power to the people. Many Canadiens wanted this as well. Influenced by LIBERAL IDEAS about government. Liberalism Believes in individual freedom and equality. People should have… Freedom of expression Equality Freedom of belief and religion Participation in government (and vote). Constitutional Act - 1797 Divided Quebec into 2 parts: Upper Canada (west) Lower Canada (east) Differences between Upper and Lower Canada Lower Canada French Canadian maj. Catholic maj. French civil law, British criminal Law. Upper Canada Anglophone maj. Protestant maj. British civil and criminal law. Changes in Government. Created parliamentary system – the people elected representatives to a legislative assembly. To vote, you had to: Legislative assembly could pass laws and bills – though they still had to be approved by the Legislative council and Governor (who were appointed, not voted in). Be a British subject. Be over 21 years old. Own land, or have rented for at least a year.