National Newswatch

As summer approaches, Parliament is still at a crossroads

Jun 20 2021 — Aaron Wherry — When the second session of the 43rd Parliament began last September, Canada was said to be at a crossroads. Nine months later, it’s fair to say the country is still facing a fork in the road. That’s not because nothing has happened since then, but rather because so much remains unsettled. With a possible (and […]

The Liberals’ net-zero ‘accountability’ legislation is on thin ice

Jun 9 2021 — Aaron Wherry — Bill C-12, the Liberal government’s net-zero emissions accountability act, could be a landmark law in the history of Canada’s efforts to combat climate change. But first it has to actually become a law — and it’s suddenly not obvious that the bill will get through both the House of Commons and Senate before both chambers […]

Without meaning to, Mike Duffy may have changed the Senate forever

May 27 2021 — Aaron Wherry — Stephen Harper once signed a photograph for Mike Duffy with a caption telling the senator for Prince Edward Island that he was one of his “best, hardest-working appointments ever.” Harper himself probably would dispute that description now. But it’s possible that Duffy, who retired from the Senate this week, will go down as Harper’s most […]

Canada is winning the vaccine lottery. Other countries aren’t so lucky.

May 22 2021 — Aaron Wherry — Canadians are very lucky. Just a few months after the vaccination campaign was assailed by politicians and pundits as a disaster, this country of 38 million people had received 23 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine as of Thursday morning. Millions more doses are expected in the coming weeks. Canada caught up to the United […]

Steven Guilbeault is trying to take on Big Tech. It’s not going well.

May 15 2021 — Aaron Wherry — In an interview last fall, Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault compared the Internet giants of today — platforms such as Facebook and Google — to the big polluters he fought for many years as an environmental activist. The comparison is intriguing, perhaps even apt — and it might explain how Guilbeault is going about the task […]

With one budget, Freeland overturned 3 decades of political orthodoxy

Apr 20 2021 — Aaron Wherry — Nearly seven years ago, a rookie politician surveyed the political landscape across the democratic world and saw the outlines of a new era. “What we are seeing, in both Western Europe and North America, is the end of the Reagan/Thatcher era and of the political ideas that created it,” Chrystia Freeland wrote at the time.

Is Canada finally inching toward a political consensus on climate change?

Apr 16 2021 — Aaron Wherry — On the day Erin O’Toole tacitly gave up his party’s opposition to carbon pricing (“We recognize,” he said, “that the most efficient way to reduce our emissions is to use pricing mechanisms”) he still struggled to explain why his proposal for a lower price on carbon was more altruistic than the policies Conservatives have spent […]

Trudeau, O’Toole and Singh aren’t all talking about the same problems

Apr 12 2021 — Aaron Wherry — Speaking to the Liberal convention on Saturday afternoon, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau argued that politics should be about finding “real solutions” for the “real problems” and “real challenges” that people face. “My friends, what it all comes down to is this,” he said. “Which party has a real plan for the real problems in the […]