National Newswatch

It’s Scheer’s party now. Can he hold it together?

May 27 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Andrew Scheer’s job used to be about forcing bickering politicians to behave themselves in the Commons. Maybe that’s why a slim majority of Conservatives ultimately decided the former Commons Speaker was the best man for the job of leading of the official opposition party — because this weekend’s vote has exposed some deep fissures in […]

Conservatives need to learn from Liberal “interim”

May 27 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Many Conservatives will walk out of the Toronto Congress Centre on Saturday with dreams of 2019 victory dancing through their heads. That’s not an unreasonable hope. But the next leader of the Conservative Party of Canada might also want to think carefully about the wise counsel that Rona Ambrose received from past leaders when she […]

Why don’t we know who will replace Peter Mansbridge yet?

May 26 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Comedian Mark Critch announced on Twitter this week that he would be the new anchor of CBC TV’s flagship newscast, The National. His announcement featured a shot of the 22 Minutes star standing in the spot soon to be vacated by Peter Mansbridge. “In your face, @petermansbridge,” the tweet said. Mansbridge, nearing the end of […]

The Liberals are hinting at new rules limiting ‘foreign interference’ in elections

May 23 2017 — Susan Delacourt — It isn’t exactly an American-style brawl over “rigged campaigns” — not nearly as sexy as Russian dabbling in a U.S. presidential election — but Canada’s Conservatives increasingly seem to be spoiling for a fight over foreign interference in this country’s elections. Here’s the thing, though: They may not get the argument they’re anticipating from Justin […]

When political parties get a little out of hand

May 19 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Socializing with the prime minister has somehow become a form of extreme sport in Canadian politics — play at your own peril. Sen. Stephen Greene became the latest to learn this lesson when he agreed to be part of a group dining with Justin Trudeau on Tuesday night — and suddenly found himself ejected from […]

Rona Ambrose — and what might have been

May 16 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Rona Ambrose is leaving federal politics as a great example of just how far an intelligent, progressive, feminist woman can climb in the current Conservative Party of Canada. Funny — that was her reputation before the Conservatives took power in 2006, too. It’s that interlude in between — Ambrose’s experience in power — that is […]

A Canadian post-racial moment. Or was it?

May 12 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Cornell Belcher, a former pollster for the U.S. Democrats, said this week that he was seriously thinking about relocating to Toronto. He was on a swing through Canada, promoting his book A Black Man in the White House, and from what he was seeing, this country looked a lot more sane than his own. Belcher […]

Where is the next great Canadian political book coming from?

May 9 2017 — Susan Delacourt — The Clinton family may soon become a whole new literary genre. At the rate they’re going, the clan may soon rate its own section in public libraries. Even as books about Hillary Clinton’s failed presidential bid are being written and released, her husband, former president Bill Clinton, announced he was co-writing a novel with famed […]

Drugs and Trudeau government a combustible mix

May 5 2017 — Susan Delacourt — No one plans to acquire a drug problem over the course of a lifetime — and neither do governments. Yet Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government is nearing its midpoint in power surrounded by drug problems: serious issues to confront about legal, illegal and almost-legal substances. Two years ago, as they campaigned for office, most of […]

The Liberals are losing the money war. Should they panic?

May 2 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent out a lot of emails last week, each one sounding more needy than the last. Now we know why: The latest Elections Canada fundraising reports reveal that the first three months of this year were grim for the governing Liberals — especially in comparison to their Conservative rivals. Even without […]

Trudeau and the problems of populism

Apr 25 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Future historians may have a hard time explaining why citizens in a populist mood are putting powerful families in high office these days. Anti-elite Americans opted to be governed by Donald Trump, a billionaire who has installed his family members as deputies in the White House. It’s been a while since I looked at my […]

The politics of social media trip up Trump

Apr 14 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Donald Trump might have been surprised to learn this week that he is not the world’s most popular leader on social media. A newly released study of world leaders on Instagram revealed that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is more popular than Trump on the picture-sharing social network. Modi has 6.8 million followers on Instagram; […]

Trudeau’s enjoying a weird truce on trade with the Conservatives

Apr 11 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Two versions of Rona Ambrose have been on display this week. On Parliament Hill, the Opposition leader has been throwing darts at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for everything from his vacation costs to sanctions against Iran and Russia. In Washington on Monday, the same Rona Ambrose presented herself as the PM’s staunch ally. “Park partisanship […]

Trudeau’s Liberals keeping their enemies close

Apr 7 2017 — Susan Delacourt — In politics, as in life, you don’t often get to choose your enemies. That hasn’t stopped politicians from trying, though. Former prime minister Stephen Harper worked doggedly to permanently crush the Liberals, clearly preferring that his Conservatives have only New Democrats to fight in future elections. He almost succeeded. Jean Chrétien was happy to keep […]

Liz May’s got a bold plan to clean up the Commons

Apr 4 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Justin Trudeau recently stopped answering questions in the Commons from Green Party Leader Elizabeth May. It’s a small but significant break from the unwritten protocol of the House which says party leaders always get replies from the prime minister if he’s in the Commons. Prime Minister Stephen Harper always answered May’s questions, for instance. But […]