National Newswatch
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How Preston Manning convinced Wildrose MLAs to join mass defection

Dec 19 2014 — Jen Gerson

A whirlwind three weeks of negotiations to set the terms for one of the most dramatic mass defections in Canadian political history ended in the Edmonton apartment of a Wildrose MLA on Tuesday night. Pizza, pretzels and “beverages” were served as the “Wildrose Nine” — the collection of MLAs who crossed the floor on Wednesday […]

Dec 19 2014 — Kady O'Malley

The federal ethics watchdog has launched a preliminary investigation into whether Conservative MPs Rob Clarke and Rod Bruinooge may have breached House conflict of interest rules by voting to drop a longstanding ban on the use of smartphones, tablets and other communications devices at polling stations.

Dec 19 2014 — Andrew Peplowski

A poll published in La Presse this morning indicates that Quebecers are increasingly throwing their support behind the federal Liberal Party, for an election that is still months away. Conducted by CROP, the survey also contains encouraging numbers for the Conservitives. If an election was held today, 37% of Quebecers would vote Liberal, 30% would […]

Dec 19 2014 —

Defence Minister Rob Nicholson has formally announced that the air force will get a fifth C-17 Globemaster heavy-lift transport plane. The federal cabinet recently signed off on the proposal, which the military has been pushing for, calling it a uniquely time-sensitive opportunity because Boeing aircraft, the U.S. manufacturer, has closed the assembly line. Nicholson made […]

Dec 19 2014 —

Canada is once again imposing new sanctions against Russia in response to its incursions into Ukraine. The latest sanctions target 20 Russian and Ukrainian individuals and include new export restrictions on technologies used in Russia’s oil sector. The sanctions against individuals involve freezing of assets and travel bans. But it’s the oilpatch sanctions that will […]

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The Battle of London: Trudeau, Thatcher, and the Fight for Canada’s Constitution

Dec 19 2014 — James Anderson

If you have any book lovers on your shopping list, here’s an idea: political junkies, history buffs and the tortured souls who have followed (or participated in) Canada’s constitutional travails will almost certainly enjoy The Battle of London: Trudeau, Thatcher, and the Fight for Canada’s Constitution. Frédéric Bastien, a journalist, historian, and professor of history […]

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Feds Pay $1.25M For ‘News’ Handouts To Media Editors

Dec 19 2014 — Tom Korski

Public Works Canada is awarding a $1.25 million contract to a publicist to distribute government-vetted “news” to publishers and radio and TV stations. The budget for handout “news” increased 25 percent from a previous contract. The department said it wanted to “inform and educate Canadians on public issues”. The publicist, News Canada Ltd., said it […]

Dec 19 2014 —

A crowdfunding website is raising money for some Alberta Wildrose caucus staff who have lost their jobs since their leader and eight others crossed over to the Progressive Conservatives. The gofundme page, called “Wildrose for Wildrose,” has raised more than $8,000 since it was set up Thursday night. Organizer Lisa Hansen-Zacharuk (ZACK’-rack) isn’t aware of […]

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Dec 19 2014 —

The accused in Quebec’s 2012 election shooting has been denied bail. Richard Henry Bain had been seeking bail in advance of his murder trial, which is set to begin early in 2015. Quebec Superior Court Justice Guy Cournoyer ruled today that Bain failed to satisfy the court he would not pose a risk to safety. […]

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Dec 19 2014 — Carol Mulligan

Federal New Democratic Party Leader Thomas Mulcair had no idea when he spoke Sunday with Glenn Thibeault that, in two days, the Sudbury New Democrat MP would be the appointed candidate for the Liberals in a Sudbury provincial byelection. Thibeault had resigned as chair of Mulcair’s caucus three weeks earlier, and he and the party […]

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Dec 19 2014 — Tim Naumetz

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has given his normal sprinkling of year-end Parliamentary Press Gallery interviews, but he has had only one news conference in the National Press Theatre since first winning power in 2006 and a comparison of G8 ranks shows Mr. Harper is least likely of the major leaders to open up to journalists […]

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Featured Ink

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Five signs of political civility in ’14: Delacourt

Dec 19 2014 — Susan Delacourt

It is sadly true that much of Canadian politics resembled an extended celebration of Festivus in 2014. For non-fans of the old Seinfeld TV show, Festivus was the fictional alternative to Christmas celebrations, in which the Costanza family marked the season with “feats of strength” and “airing of grievances.” That sounds a lot like another […]

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Backlash against Quebec premier is no sovereigntist revival

Dec 19 2014 — Chantal Hébert

Looking in the end-of-year rearview mirror it is a road not taken that catches the eye. In the big picture of Canadian politics Quebec’s spring election was the watershed episode of an eventful 2014. By banishing the Parti Québécois to opposition after less than two years in power, Quebecers postponed a possible appointment with a […]

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Sanctions bite, but Baird and allies worry about Putin’s reaction

Dec 19 2014 — Tim Harper

One year ago, John Baird marched with anti-government protesters in Kyiv’s Maidan Square, a scarf bearing the colours of Ukraine’s national football team draped over his shoulders. Providing security for Canada’s foreign affairs minister were agents of the government the demonstrators sought to overthrow. The symbolic — and risky — show of solidarity marked the […]

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Out of the darkness, into the light

Dec 19 2014 — Warren Kinsella

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. And this year, the worst moments inadvertently resulted in some of the best moments, too. As 2015 beckons, and 2014 recedes, Sun News Network asked some of us to assemble some thoughts about the year’s best and worst political moments. As we did […]

Michael Harris

Steve and CC, cozy together

Dec 19 2014 — Michael Harris

Last night, Canada’s most overrated journalist and underrated politician, Peter Mansbridge, performed his Yuletide foot massage on Prime Minister Stephen Harper. You came away knowing not much more than the fact that both men love their jobs. Good for them. As usual, Harper had his way with a host referred to inside the grandiose and […]

Senator Colin Kenny

Ten Signs that someone is Becoming Radicalized to Violence

Dec 19 2014 — Colin Kenny

If there were any doubts remaining in the minds of Canadians that this country has a serious problem with domestic radicalization to violence, the events of this past year most surely brought them to a decisive end. The two terrorist attacks in October and the participation of over 130 Canadian citizens in the Islamic State’s […]

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Economic Risks and Climate Change

Dec 19 2014 — Grant Mitchell

There is clear economic risk to Canada in ignoring climate change. There is also great economic opportunity in dealing with it. The resistance to Northern Gateway, Energy East and Keystone XL pipelines is evidence that the Canadian and US publics want greater assurance of environmental responsibility in developing energy projects. Well into the ninth year […]

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Goodbye, 2014. We never liked you.

Dec 19 2014 — Tasha Kheiriddin

All through the House, nothing is stirring. The politicians are tucked in their ridings with care, and voters can turn their attention to more important matters — like whether to serve tinned or home-made cranberry sauce at Christmas dinner. Time to put up your feet, toss back a box of chocolates and reflect on the […]

Dec 19 2014 — Michael de Adder

Can there be anyone as superbly fantastic as Alberta Premier Jim Prentice, except perhaps for, on a good day, Chris Hadfield? Prentice is the multi-talented global space-walking superstar of Canadian politics. It’s a matter of time until he too starts warbling David Bowie, better than the original. And unlike Prime Minister Stephen Harper, whose arias […]

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Dec 19 2014 — Lorrie Goldstein

Why would the Liberal Caucus at Queen’s Park pay $10,000 to the husband of then premier Dalton McGuinty’s deputy chief of staff to wipe 20 computer hard drives in the premier’s office? The taxpayer-funded caucus office represents MPPs. Why would it pay Peter Faist, husband of senior McGuinty adviser Laura Miller, for work done in […]

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Entertainment Plus

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Colbert signs off ‘Report’ with cameo-filled finale

Dec 19 2014 —

When Stephen Colbert announced the Grim Reaper as his final “Colbert Report” guest, there was speculation he would symbolically kill off the conservative blowhard character he has inhabited since the show’s premiere in 2005. But in the final episode of the Comedy Central late night show Thursday, it was Colbert who achieved immortality when he […]

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