National Newswatch

Trudeau’s ‘deliverology’ on the verge of becoming a punchline

Nov 18 2017 — Adam Radwanski — Before this week, questions about “deliverology” were liable to be met with a shrug by many in and around the federal government. Few could explain what the results-oriented management approach Justin Trudeau promised – complete with the knighted British guru who pioneered it in Tony Blair’s government meeting extensively with the Liberal cabinet – had […]

From Harper to Trudeau, has Ottawa’s culture swung too far from one extreme to another?

Nov 4 2017 — Adam Radwanski — Amid the Liberal government’s mid-term struggles, Conservatives who served under Stephen Harper have looked on with bemusement. Their government never would have let bureaucrats foist ill-considered tax reforms on them, former staffers will say – and boy, did the Finance Ministry try. They wouldn’t have been caught off guard by how the minister steering those […]

Trudeau could use a few more experienced cabinet hands

Aug 25 2017 — Adam Radwanski — For a time before the past federal election, it appeared that Justin Trudeau’s candidate ranks in Ontario would be overrun with high-profile provincial Liberals. But despite ample interest from former members of ex-premier Dalton McGuinty’s cabinet in making a move to Ottawa, all but a single one – Peter Fonseca, a minor player provincially who […]

Butts, Bannon and an unexpectedly effective courtship

Aug 17 2017 — Adam Radwanski — The words had scarcely been published on Tuesday evening when Canada’s chattering classes lit up Twitter with titters. That Justin Trudeau’s Liberals had spent much of their time since last November making nice with the Trump administration was well documented. But the Prime Minister making showy public appearances with Ivanka Trump or his chief of […]

In Andrew Scheer’s early days, it’s still Stephen Harper’s party

Jul 8 2017 — Adam Radwanski — When Andrew Scheer won the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada in the spring, the implicit promise was continuity. He might be younger, more affable, a better retail politician than Stephen Harper. But, unlike leadership rivals who had promised hard-core libertarianism or something closer to Red Toryism, he would essentially maintain Mr. Harper’s version […]

How Kathleen Wynne’s fundraising rules hit the Grits

Jul 4 2017 — Adam Radwanski — Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals are nearly broke. That they are not completely broke owes to a new annual per-vote subsidy, introduced last year alongside new provincial fundraising rules, that puts about $5-million into their coffers in 2017. Otherwise, those new rules – which include a ban on corporate and union donations, a lower limit for personal […]

Why the NDP leadership presents a daunting choice

Jun 24 2017 — Adam Radwanski — Under the radar of most Canadians, New Democrats are in the midst of a fascinating decision about the face they put forward. The leadership contest to replace Tom Mulcair won’t result in a dramatic ideological shift for the federal third party. There is no Jeremy Corbyn-like figure offering a lurch toward hard-core old-school socialism; nor […]

For Trudeau’s Liberals, universal daycare is a distant dream

Jun 17 2017 — Adam Radwanski — Hot off announcing the first deal with an individual province under a new national framework signed earlier in the week, Jean-Yves Duclos gamely tried to paint it as the start of a process that will lead to affordable child care for all. “Eventually, we’ll get to universality,” the federal Minister of Families, Children and Social […]

Why shifting left (again) gives Wynne her last best chance

Jun 3 2017 — Adam Radwanski — For nearly the first time since she won a majority government three years ago, Kathleen Wynne is in her comfort zone. The Ontario Premier’s re-embrace of her left-of-centre activist roots, culminating in this week’s announcement of new labour provisions highlighted by a $15 minimum wage, may not be enough to keep her in office past […]

Team Trudeau’s precarious friendship with Jared Kushner

May 20 2017 — Adam Radwanski — It was laugh-out-loud funny, Donald Trump’s apparent credulousness at the way NAFTA renegotiations unofficially began a few weeks ago. But the straight-out-of-Veep sequence of events – the U.S. President threatening to tear up the agreement altogether, his own administration helping orchestrate calls from his Canadian and Mexican counterparts to persuade him otherwise, the President then […]