National Newswatch
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Conservatives won’t participate in major broadcasters’ debates

May 21 2015 — Laura Stone

It’s official: Prime Minister Stephen Harper will not participate in two leaders’ debates hosted by Canada’s major broadcasters. The broadcast consortium of Global News, CTV, CBC and Radio-Canada announced Thursday it has reached an agreement in principle to host two debates with the NDP, the Liberals, the Green Party and the Bloc Quebecois during the […]

May 21 2015 — Althia Raj

Canada’s New Democrats believe Canadian universities are “not really neutral” enough venues in which to hold the leaders’ debates. The surprising comments were made by NDP national campaign director Anne McGrath during confidential discussions with representatives of the broadcast consortium as well as the Liberal party, Green party and Bloc Québécois, several sources told The […]

May 21 2015 —

Legal and parliamentary experts say there’s nothing to stop the Harper government from retroactively rewriting a law to absolve RCMP wrongdoing and stuffing the changes in an omnibus budget bill — even as police investigate. “There is no restraint on Parliament’s legislative powers other than legislative jurisdiction under the Constitution Act 1867 and the charter,” […]

May 21 2015 — James Cudmore

The general in charge of Royal Military College apologized to an expert on sexual assault prevention for the “unprofessional behaviour” of the school’s cadets, including “several incidents that could constitute harassment,” after she was invited to address the military’s future leaders last fall. Brig.-Gen. Al Meinzinger sent a formal written apology to the Ontario Coalition […]

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Game of chicken continues: opposition parties agree to TV debate nixed by PM

May 21 2015 —

The opposition parties might have agreed to a national English debate broadcast by the major TV networks, but the Conservatives aren’t budging on their decision to skip it. The NDP, Liberals and Green party reached an agreement in principle Thursday with the television consortium that has traditionally organized the election debates, for two national broadcasts […]

May 21 2015 — Sophia Harris

The Canadian Senate plans to announce next week major changes to its travel policy that will put an end to senators taking pricey flights, CBC News has learned. Hours after CBC published information about high-spending senators taking expensive flights, a Senate media spokeswoman contacted a reporter to say changes will be in place by June. […]

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May 21 2015 — Tavia Grant

More Canadians are collecting jobless benefits than a year ago – the first year-over-year increase in five years. The number of people getting employment insurance benefits rose 1.1 per cent in March from a month earlier and is 2,600 higher than a year earlier, Statistics Canada said Thursday. Alberta saw an 8.9-per-cent monthly jump, leading […]

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May 21 2015 —

Prime Minister Stephen Harper made clear Thursday that the Conservative government has no sympathy for people in Canada who decide to join terror groups, stressing that turning to violent jihad while living in this country is “totally unacceptable.” Speaking from Montreal, Harper said while he sympathizes with families who are affected when a loved one […]

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May 21 2015 — Theophilos Argitis

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, whose Conservatives trailed in public-opinion polls for almost two years, is back in the political driver’s seat. A slow decline in support for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals, coupled with rising support for the New Democratic Party, suggest the sort of vote splitting to Harper’s left that opens the door for a […]

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Featured Ink

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Alberta NDP gives Harper government a lesson in cabinet making

May 21 2015 — Don Martin

You couldn’t swing an angry cat around the CTV mini-studio in Ottawa without hitting a wall or a television camera. It’s compact, but functional enough to handle a camera operator and one guest. Earlier this week, federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz squeezed inside the booth with THREE aides anxiously monitoring his victory declaration over Americans […]

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First past the post elections can hardly be called democracy

May 21 2015 — Andrew Coyne

They are still picking up the pieces after the British election. While the Conservatives celebrated their surprise majority win, elsewhere the carnage was horrific: to the country, racked by ethnic and regional divisions; to the main opposition parties, three of whom lost their leaders (though one has since “unresigned”); to the pollsters, their reputations in […]

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End of an era for the Leader’s Tour

May 21 2015 — Robin V. Sears

Lyndon Johnson finagled a helicopter from a rich oil pal in his 1948 Senate campaign in Texas. It transformed politics there and across North America for the next six decades. The ability to cram in as many as a dozen events a day with a few select reporters on board was unheard of. Campaigns were […]

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PKP’s success in Quebec married to Bloc Québécois

May 21 2015 — Chantal Hébert

The Parti Québécois chose media tycoon Pierre-Karl Péladeau as its leader last Friday based on the belief he would breathe new life into the flagging cause of sovereignty and do so quickly. For the baby boomers who make up the backbone of the PQ, time to reach the coveted destination of independence is of the […]

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Carbon tax utterly insignificant

May 21 2015 — Lorrie Goldstein

British Columbia’s carbon tax has been described by admirers as among the best in the world for fighting climate change. Today I’m going to use it, including the most optimistic projections by its supporters, to show you why it is utterly meaningless in the absence of a truly global plan to combat greenhouse gas emissions. […]

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Stephen Harper’s not-so-smooth re-elections

May 20 2015 — Paul Wells

Some governments coast smoothly to re-election. Stephen Harper’s has never been one of those. Before the 2008 and 2011 elections, the Conservatives developed an alarming rattle in their machinery. Bits of ethical and managerial debris fell off as they taxied toward the runway. In 2008 Harper abandoned the spirit of his fixed-election-date legislation and blithely […]

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Will NDP walk into liquefied natural-gas trap set by Clark government?

May 21 2015 — Michael Smyth

The B.C. government has now bent over backwards for the LNG industry to such a spine-twisting extent that it’s amazing Premier Christy Clark hasn’t appointed a new minister of contortionism. The latest back-bender: The government will indemnify energy giant Petronas against future tax increases and lock in a sliding-scale royalty rate for 23 years. No […]

Entertainment Plus

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David Letterman says farewell in emotional ‘Late Show’ finale, calling it ‘the most important show of my life’

May 21 2015 — Don Kaplan, Gianluca Cuestas and Bill Hutchinson

It was a “Late Show” that left fans laughing through their tears — and begging for more. David Letterman signed off as the king of late night for the last time Wednesday with heartfelt thanks to everyone who made his dreams come true in a finale that ran some 20 minutes over schedule. “The people […]

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