National Newswatch

Speculation abounds over Bill Morneau’s future as finance minister

Aug 12 2020 — Aaron Wherry — Monday was a tough day for Bill Morneau and a good day for those who want to speculate about whether Bill Morneau will continue to be the finance minister for much longer. First came word that Mark Carney, the highly regarded and dapper former governor of the Bank of Canada, has been advising Justin Trudeau […]

Julie Payette’s controversies could be a big problem for Rideau Hall

Aug 8 2020 — Aaron Wherry — “Prime minister,” the clerk of the privy council is reported to have advised, “your biggest problem is in Rideau Hall.” That was in 2006, when Stephen Harper was prime minister and Michaëlle Jean was Governor General. Fourteen years later, amid a run of unflattering stories, Justin Trudeau and Julie Payette might try to find some […]

Trudeau explains how he missed another chance to avoid trouble

Jul 31 2020 — Aaron Wherry — Justin Trudeau says he was concerned about how it might look for him and his government to partner with the WE charity to deliver a student volunteer grant. But he was apparently not concerned enough. The prime minister’s extraordinary appearance before the House of Commons standing committee on finance on Thursday was a chance for […]

The Kielburgers struggle to salvage their brand

Jul 28 2020 — Aaron Wherry — In March, at their last WE Day event before the pandemic made such gatherings inadvisable, Mark and Craig Kielburger shared a stage at Wembley Arena in London, England with the actor Idris Elba, F1 race car driver Lewis Hamilton, celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and singer Leona Lewis. Less than four months later, the brothers found […]

Justin Trudeau drops into another pitfall of his own making

Jul 11 2020 — Aaron Wherry — Justin Trudeau and his government have shown a remarkable ability to find trouble in novel places — a Christmas vacation, the Shawcross doctrine and the possibility of a deferred prosecution agreement for SNC-Lavalin, the prime minister’s choice of attire during a trip to India. And now, a national program for student volunteers. News that a […]

Reopening the Canada-U.S. border will be a long, piecemeal process

Jul 1 2020 — Aaron Wherry — The Donald Trump era began in 2015 with a promise to build a wall between the United States and Mexico. Five years later, the Trump era may end with citizens in much of the rest of the world — Canadians, in particular — insisting on a virtual wall between themselves and the United States. With […]

Conservative front-runners talk vision and ideas, but leadership contest more a clash of styles

Jun 19 2020 — Aaron Wherry — In the wake of last fall’s federal election and Andrew Scheer’s resignation as Conservative leader, most pundits would have been hard-pressed to predict that the sharpest clash of ideas at the English-language debate in the leadership race that followed would involve whether or not a future Conservative government should prioritize a push to reform the […]

Why Canada might need a climate law — and how it might work

Jun 16 2020 — Aaron Wherry — Beginning with Brian Mulroney in 1988, four different prime ministers have committed this country to nine different climate targets over the last 32 years. So far, five of those carbon emissions targets — for the years 2000, 2005, 2010 and 2012 — have been missed by wide margins. Stephen Harper set two different targets for […]

One country, two pandemics: what COVID-19 reveals about inequality in Canada

Jun 13 2020 — Aaron Wherry — We are still all in this together. But after three months, it’s getting easier to draw differences and point fingers. A new analysis conducted by CBC News of cases in Montreal, for instance, found strong correlations linking higher rates of COVID-19 infections with low-income neighbourhoods and neighbourhoods with higher percentages of Black residents. Limitations on […]