National Newswatch
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Trudeau wise to hold fire over Trump’s trade tirade

Apr 21 2017 — Chantal Hébert — In the big picture, the world is probably having a decent week when Donald Trump turns his rhetorical guns on Canada rather than on North Korea or Russia. On the scale of a nuclear showdown, the stakes involved in a Canada/U.S. milk war are — to put it mildly — in a different league. But […]

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Trudeau’s pot promise is about to be put to the test

Apr 10 2017 — Chantal Hébert — If he wants to avoid spending the 2019 campaign walking on the shards of yet another broken signature promise, Justin Trudeau has little choice but to make good on his promise to legalize marijuana in time for the next election. Of the many commitments the prime minister made on the way to his majority victory […]

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Trudeau takes path of least resistance in backing Trump

Apr 7 2017 — Chantal Hébert — It took Justin Trudeau more than 12 hours to issue a definitive statement on U.S. President Donald Trump’s surprise missile strikes on the Syrian regime, but in the end he made a black-and-white choice. Just a few hours before the U.S. strikes, the prime minister was still insisting that the international community had to do […]

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The shine is off Bombardier’s special status

Apr 5 2017 — Chantal Hébert — It has long been taken for granted that no prime minister, no Quebec premier would ever let Bombardier go under on his or her watch. The aerospace giant’s leading contribution to Canada’s R&D sector, the thousands of jobs it provides kept it on the short list of Canadian corporations that no government would allow to […]

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In byelection results, Trudeau should not wear loss in support alone

Apr 4 2017 — Chantal Hébert — Gender parity was the hands-down winner of Monday’s five federal byelections. The Conservative brand was a close second, but not necessarily for reasons related to the continuing federal leadership campaign. Where there were five male MPs on election night 2015, there are now four women and one man. Mona Fortier, Mary Ng and Emmanuella Lambropoulos […]

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Trudeau, Liberals tone-deaf to House of Commons

Mar 31 2017 — Chantal Hébert — Justin Trudeau does not much like the House of Commons and the feeling is mutual. This is not a statement on the people who sit alongside or across from the prime minister, or the latter’s feelings toward them. A majority of MPs owe their seats to Trudeau’s campaign skills and they are grateful to him […]

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Five things to watch in the Conservative leadership race

Mar 29 2017 — Chantal Hébert — Now that the deadline has passed for Conservative rivals to sign up new members for the May leadership vote, here are a handful of observations on the fluid state of play in the battle for Stephen Harper’s succession: 1. There are still 14 names on the Conservative ballot, but a consensus is emerging that the […]

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Winter weather kicks up a political storm in Quebec

Mar 18 2017 — Chantal Hébert — Had Quebec been in the midst of an election campaign this week, Philippe Couillard’s days as premier would have been numbered. His Liberal government would not have survived the bungle that saw hundreds of motorists left stranded on one of Montreal’s major highways in the worst snowstorm of the season. It all started when two […]

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Federal front for Conservatives may be secondary to Alberta

Mar 15 2017 — Chantal Hébert — For more than 20 years, a politician from Alberta has held the leading position on one side or the other in the House of Commons. That unbroken spell will come to a halt when the federal Conservatives pick a permanent successor to Stephen Harper next May. The conspicuous absence of an Alberta candidate in the […]