National Newswatch

O’Toole campaign insiders say holding Trudeau to a minority would be a win for the Conservatives

Sep 20 2021 — Alex Boutilier — The Erin O’Toole campaign would consider it a win if they can hold the Liberals to a minority government in today’s federal election. Whether the Conservative caucus, party activists — and potential leadership hopefuls — will agree with that is an open question. In the final hours of Canada’s 44th federal election, O’Toole’s campaign chair […]

Conservative plan to cost more than $100 billion over next decade, Star analysis finds

Sep 6 2021 — Alex Boutilier — The Conservatives plan to spend more than $100 billion over the next decade while maintaining they can balance the federal books without cuts, a Star analysis has found. Direct spending promises in the Conservative platform total $103.6 billion over the next 10 years, excluding tax measures and other promises without price tags. The Conservative campaign […]

Some Conservative insiders feared Erin O’Toole was ‘screwed’ on mandatory vaccinations. Others think he knows exactly what Canadians want

Aug 17 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Despite dire predictions by some party insiders, the Conservative campaign believes it has dodged an attempt by the Liberals to use the issue of mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations as a political wedge. If they’re right, Erin O’Toole can take a small breath of relief that his “balanced” stance on vaccination requirements for federal workers and Canadian […]

Liberals expected to tap Kevin Vuong for Spadina—Fort York

Aug 11 2021 — Alex Boutilier — The federal Liberals are expected to tap entrepreneur Kevin Vuong to carry the party’s banner in Spadina—Fort York, the Star has learned. The downtown Toronto riding was left without a Liberal candidate after incumbent Adam Vaughan’s surprise announcement this week that he would not seek re-election after almost seven years in Ottawa. A relative newcomer […]

How will Justin Trudeau fight his next election campaign? The provincial race in Nova Scotia may hold some clues

Jul 30 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Driving along the coast in Cape Breton, you could be forgiven for not realizing there’s a provincial election campaign going on. Few political lawn signs mar the yards along rural roads, bordered by forest on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other. Aside from brief news clips between classic rock playlists or country […]

Erin O’Toole draws fire from party insiders, his own MPs over staff member who works for social conservatives

Jul 24 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole is facing questions from within his own party over allowing his deputy chief of staff to help social conservative candidates secure party nominations. The Star reported Thursday that Steve Outhouse, O’Toole’s deputy chief of staff, has been paid by nine people seeking nominations to assist their campaigns. The majority of those […]

Senior staffer for Erin O’Toole helped social conservative candidates secure party nominations

Jul 23 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Erin O’Toole’s second-most senior staffer is personally involved with helping social conservative candidates secure party nominations, the Star has learned. Four conservative sources told the Star that Steve Outhouse, a longtime Conservative operative and deputy chief of staff in O’Toole’s office, is moonlighting as a consultant on multiple nomination campaigns across the country. The majority […]

Erin O’Toole is well aware he’s pushing for a carbon tax

Apr 18 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Despite his public denials, Erin O’Toole knows he’s proposing a carbon tax. The senior staff around him know he’s proposing a carbon tax. The MPs in his caucus know he’s proposing a carbon tax. And the Conservative base knows he’s proposing a carbon tax. They say this openly, albeit in conversations where they insist they […]

Erin O’Toole’s path to a majority government runs through Ontario. But Conservative insiders are left wondering which ridings he can win

Mar 31 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Erin O’Toole’s path to power still runs through Ontario, but while his Conservative party is seeing promising signs in rural ridings, its fortunes in the GTA are less clear. The Conservatives are being more “realistic” about picking up seats in GTA battleground ridings in the next election after the party’s disappointing 2019 showing in the […]

Erin O’Toole wanted Conservatives to affirm that ‘climate change is real.’ Here’s how his attempt went off the rails

Mar 28 2021 — Alex Boutilier — Erin O’Toole’s team was caught flat-footed last week when a debate over climate change threatened to torpedo the Conservative leader’s own call for change. By then, it was too late. In what was seen as an embarrassing setback for their new leader, delegates at the party’s virtual policy convention voted down a resolution recognizing that […]