National Newswatch
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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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Inauguration to usher in a ‘ringmaster president’ and much uncertainty

Jan 19 2017 — Chris Hall — Donald Trump is a day removed from becoming the 45th president of the United States, swept to power on a wave of voter disenchantment with politics as usual in Washington and a staunch belief that Trump’s boast of making America great again is something real. The candidate who campaigned as the political outsider, the candidate […]

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‘Not a target … not an ally’: What Trump presidency could mean for Canadian economy

Jan 14 2017 — Chris Hall — There wasn’t much surprise when the United Steelworkers officially endorsed Hillary Clinton in last year’s U.S. presidential race. The Democrats had always been the party of organized labour, the party that authored protectionist policies that supported jobs and companies in the American heartland. But the Canadian who leads the United Steelworkers, one of the largest […]

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Trudeau tries to craft sturdier cabinet to withstand Trump

Jan 10 2017 — Chris Hall — The prime minister has renovated the cabinet he put together barely more than a year ago with an eye, it seems, to fashioning a sturdier version of the original to withstand the attention of a new, more bellicose neighbour. Tuesday’s shuffle was an almost solemn affair at Rideau Hall, with voices never rising above a […]

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Joe Biden drops in for a visit without any gifts

Dec 8 2016 — Chris Hall — He’s just a few weeks away from becoming just another ordinary Joe. But that’s not stopping U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden from making an official visit to Ottawa, where the Canadian government will roll out the red carpet. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will play host to Biden at a dinner on Thursday night that’s being billed […]

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Justin Trudeau boxed himself in on more than just pipelines

Dec 1 2016 — Chris Hall — Justin Trudeau had no choice. The prime minister had to approve the proposed expansion of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline because of the many statements he’d made over the past year that boil down to this: protecting the environment can go hand in hand with finding foreign markets for Canadian oil. “One of the fundamental […]

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Is Trump’s tough talk on trade all bluster? Business leaders shouldn’t wait to find out

Nov 18 2016 — Chris Hall — Donald Trump’s language during his successful presidential bid always bordered on incendiary, whether it was calling his opponent “Crooked Hillary” or dismissing climate change as a Chinese “hoax.” So it should be no surprise that the president-elect’s choice of words when describing American trade deals resorted to the same excess, overkill and hyperbole. “When was […]