National Newswatch

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 […]

The pandemic could be an opening to build a better Parliament

May 30 2020 — Aaron Wherry — The recent spasm of concern over how Parliament is or isn’t functioning during this pandemic at least demonstrates that there is still some feeling for an institution that is otherwise often neglected. Perhaps, in the spirit of these times, that energy can be harnessed to renew the House of Commons — to build it back […]

Leaving out long-term care was medicare’s original sin — and we’re paying for it now

May 28 2020 — Aaron Wherry — In 1983, as the federal and provincial governments were negotiating what would become the Canada Health Act, the Canadian Medical Association created a task force to study “the allocation of health care resources.” Included in the task force’s final report, released in 1984, were comments on the state of Canada’s “nursing homes” — observations that […]

If the deficit makes you nervous, what about our other problems?

May 24 2020 — Aaron Wherry — It’s probably not too early to worry, if only a little, about the federal deficit. It’s also probably not too early to worry that worrying too much about the deficit might unnecessarily crowd out all the other things we’ll have to worry about after the COVID-19 pandemic finally ends. If nothing else, the current crisis […]