National Newswatch

Justin Trudeau might be a TV star, but he’s not quite living up to the West Wing

Nov 20 2017 — Aaron Wherry — A few weeks before the Liberal government launched its mandate-tracking website — last week’s much-derided attempt to tell the government’s story — Michael Healey, a Toronto playwright who has scripted several portrayals of prime ministers, tweeted a clarion call for Justin Trudeau’s administration to better explain itself. “You have all this room politically. Act as […]

Promises, promises: The Liberals made a lot, maybe too many

Nov 16 2017 — Aaron Wherry — Only the naive person views the politician without skepticism. But a politician’s words are still important, not least because what he or she says they will do is generally in line with what they do. That’s the finding across three studies of campaign promises dating back more than 70 years, though there are differences in […]

Speaker splits up Liberal omnibus budget bill, thanks to new Liberal rule

Nov 8 2017 — Aaron Wherry — Speaker Geoff Regan made a bit of parliamentary history on Wednesday afternoon, ruling that the Liberal government’s current budget bill was an example of omnibus legislation that should be split up for separate votes. Regan’s move was the first use of a new rule for omnibus legislation — a rule the Liberals introduced this spring […]

Debate over drug injection sites might be coming to end

Nov 5 2017 — Aaron Wherry — In the space of two years, the number of supervised consumption sites approved to operate in Canada has gone from one to 22, plus three interim sites. In November 2015, when Justin Trudeau’s new Liberal government was sworn in, there was only Vancouver’s Insite. Health Canada has now granted approval to two dozen new sites […]

Scheer blasts Trudeau for supporting Governor General after ‘divine intervention’ comment

Nov 3 2017 — Aaron Wherry — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is criticizing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for praising Gov. Gen. Julie Payette in the wake of Payette’s suggestion that “divine intervention” did not play a role in the creation of life on Earth. “It is extremely disappointing that the prime minister will not support Indigenous peoples, Muslims, Jews, Sikhs, Christians and […]

Trudeau reluctant to reveal too much on Quebec’s face-covering law

Oct 21 2017 — Aaron Wherry — Over the course of three days this week, the prime minister was poked and prodded for a position on Bill 62. The Quebec law, passed by the provincial legislature on Tuesday, prohibits anyone delivering or receiving public services from covering their face. That again makes an issue of the niqab. On Wednesday, in the House […]

Bill Morneau tries to divest himself of a controversy

Oct 19 2017 — Aaron Wherry — Just before question period, the finance minister summoned reporters to a small media room in Centre Block’s basement to explain that he would be divesting himself of a million shares in his family business. In the House of Commons, the opposition would attempt to divest from Bill Morneau its pound of flesh. “The finance minister […]

Trudeau celebrates his second anniversary on the defensive

Oct 19 2017 — Aaron Wherry — As Justin Trudeau stood on a riser in a Montreal hotel ballroom on the night of Oct. 19, 2015, basking in the glow of victory, there was nothing to be said about the taxation of passive investment income, no questions about Bill Morneau’s stock portfolio or a villa in France. “Sunny ways, my friends,” the […]