National Newswatch

Auditor general’s complaint leads to cabinet order for release of Finance documents

May 18 2017 — Chris Hall — Michael Ferguson is entering his sixth year as Canada’s auditor general and, not surprisingly, his reports during that time have found numerous examples of government waste, excess and neglect. But his most recent batch of audits released this week exposed a significant hurdle to ensuring government programs provide good value for taxpayers’ money. In two […]

Taxpayers won’t be on the hook for infrastructure bank risks, Sohi says

May 13 2017 — Chris Hall — Federal Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi says taxpayers won’t be on the hook if projects financed through the proposed infrastructure bank don’t produce the kinds of revenues private-sector investors expect. The Liberals want to create the $35-billion Canada Infrastructure Bank to attract outside investors such as pension plans and international financial institutions for major projects that […]

Universities say they accept new rules to boost diversity of research chair candidates

May 9 2017 — Chris Hall — Universities say they welcome the challenge from Ottawa to improve diversity among the ranks of the Canada Research Chairs, under threat of funding cuts. The federal government issued new rules last week for the prestigious research program in an attempt to improve representation for women, visible minorities, people with disabilities and Indigenous scholars. Universities are […]

Common interest will ensure Canada-U.S. trade conflicts get solved

Apr 29 2017 — Chris Hall — Canada remains confident a deal can be reached with the United States on softwood lumber without repeating the drawn-out trade litigation of the past. Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr says reaching a new long-term deal is the best option, even as he repeats his warning that jobs will be lost in Canada as a result […]

A smile and arrest welcome asylum seekers to Canada

Mar 31 2017 — Chris Hall — Roxham Road is about as nondescript as any corner of the United States could be. Yet the country lane lined with trailer homes that dead-ends at the Quebec-New York border is an easily recognized thoroughfare for asylum seekers leaving the uncertainty of Donald Trump’s America for the welcoming unknown of Canada. It’s at the end […]

Bill Morneau’s budget caught between Trump and a hard place

Mar 22 2017 — Chris Hall — It’s safe to say that the budget Finance Minister Bill Morneau unveils today won’t be the one he originally intended as a second instalment of the Liberals’ plan to help the middle class — and all those seeking to join it. Part of the reason is that his first budget — with the billions dedicated […]

Border the big issue as a Trump official finally set to visit Ottawa

Mar 9 2017 — Chris Hall — Finally. A return visit. U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly is coming to Ottawa on Friday, the first member of President Donald Trump’s inner circle to accept an invitation to head north for meetings with his Canadian counterparts. That might not sound like a big deal, but it is. For weeks now, Canadian politicians have […]

Trudeau’s imminent meeting with Trump carries substantial political risk

Jan 31 2017 — Chris Hall — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is preparing to meet as early as this week with U.S. President Donald Trump, a visit intended to underscore the deep economic and security ties between the two countries. But it also carries substantial political risk. While the date and location have yet to be confirmed, Canadian sources say the prime […]

Trump’s 1st week reshapes U.S. relationship with Canada

Jan 27 2017 — Chris Hall — Donald Trump’s been president for a week, but in those seven days he’s already signed a dozen or so executive orders and memorandums that will fundamentally change relations with his nearest neighbours for years to come. With a single stroke of his pen Wednesday Trump began reshaping U.S. immigration policy, kick-starting his plans to build […]