National Newswatch
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Liberals take wait-and-see approach with federal budget

Mar 22 2017 — Campbell Clark — The unprecedented ratio of words to numbers in Bill Morneau’s second budget speech was a good hint about what was in this year’s blueprint. The Finance Minister’s whole 3,300-word speech had only two numbers that came with dollar signs. Mr. Morneau mustered the verbiage to reassure and to conjure nifty ideas about the economic future, […]

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Trudeau front and centre in Privy Council’s running poll

Mar 15 2017 — Campbell Clark — For the first time, the federal government is commissioning a running poll of Canadians to be fed to the central department that advises Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The Privy Council Office issued the $312,603 polling contract last month for Forum Research to conduct a telephone poll that samples 500 Canadians every week, a total of […]

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U.S. allies shaken by Donald Trump’s wiretap tweets about Obama

Mar 6 2017 — Campbell Clark — Just when U.S. allies around the world from Canada to Europe to Asia were starting to be reassured about Donald Trump’s approach to the world, there’s a whole new gust of chaos coming from Washington. This weekend’s startling political drama of Twitter accusations of wiretaps, then denials, all following on swirling questions about the contacts […]

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B.C. NDP race lays the groundwork for federal pipeline battle

Feb 26 2017 — Campbell Clark — The NDP finally has a leadership race, and now the candidates must decide how they’ll handle a divisive issue inside their party: pipelines. The only New Democrat in power anywhere in Canada, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, backs the construction of two major pipelines, Trans Mountain and Keystone XL, to help her province’s ailing oil industry. […]

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Michael Chong’s pro-carbon-tax stance could make for a rocky Tory leadership bid

Feb 19 2017 — Campbell Clark — Michael Chong sometimes seems like he’s running for the Conservative Party leadership in the hardest possible way. Last week, while most Conservative MPs were struggling with Liberal motion M-103 on condemning Islamophobia, Mr. Chong supported it, saying that after January’s shooting at a Quebec City mosque, it’s time to study anti-Islamic prejudice. And the centrepiece […]

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Conservatives can’t win without support from Quebec

Jan 8 2017 — Campbell Clark — There was a time when Conservatives could win without Quebec, but now it would be folly to try. Yet it seems some Tory leadership candidates and putative contenders are trying to convince the party to do just that. Kevin O’Leary, the TV personality who keeps hinting he’ll run, has come up with bizarre excuses for […]

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Can Trudeau find a self-interest angle in fundraising reform?

Dec 19 2016 — Campbell Clark — If you’re wondering how Prime Minister Justin Trudeau might revamp federal fundraising rules to get out of the cash-for-access controversy, it’s worth looking at the lessons of history: The great leaps in federal fundraising ethics have gone hand in hand with screwing over the other guy. Jean Chrétien did it, adopting new rules that made […]

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Trudeau promised electoral reform, but failed to say what kind

Dec 2 2016 — Campbell Clark — It’s hard to list all the reasons why Liberal MPs on the Commons electoral-reform committee decided that their leader’s election promise was a lousy idea. There just isn’t enough time. Few people are paying attention. It’s complicated. People might have had very different ideas of what the promise meant. And it’s hard to know if […]