National Newswatch

Child advocate is a cruel target for Tory cuts

Nov 19 2018 — Chris Selley — Amidst the flurry of announcements accompanying Thursday’s Ontario fiscal update, by far the most surprising and least explicable was the elimination of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth, which advocates (hence the name) for children in care, wards of the youth justice system, First Nations children and other vulnerable groups. Irwin Elman, the province’s […]

Can Justin Trudeau sell skeptical Canadians on a carbon tax?

Oct 23 2018 — Chris Selley — On Tuesday, at 10:15 a.m., Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was scheduled to unveil a carbon tax for provinces that hadn’t implemented sufficiently ambitious ones of their own. It was to occur in Room L-125 at Humber College, a polytechnic colossus in the northwest corner of Toronto, and that made sense. Room L-125 is all about […]

Ontario PCs’ ‘hidden deficit’ routine is the weakest yet

Sep 22 2018 — Chris Selley — You’ll never guess what: There’s a new Ontario government, and it claims to have found glaring incongruities between the previous government’s financial reporting and reality, and we might all have to make sacrifices as a result. It’s like The Mousetrap of political theatre: it’s more than a bit hammy, and everyone knows how it ends, […]

A Doug Ford government could look like almost anything

Jun 7 2018 — Chris Selley — Ontario voters rang down the curtain on 15 years of Liberal government on Thursday night by making, in many ways, the traditional choice. Over the past century, with only one not-very-fondly-remembered exception, Ontarians have installed either Tory or Liberal governments. An unusual number of voters preferred the other change on offer: the NDP finished strong, […]

Ford lawsuit is a harbinger of chaos

Jun 5 2018 — Chris Selley — After three months of interminable comparisons between Doug Ford and Donald Trump, Monday brought us an unpleasant but useful reminder: The unusual politician seemingly poised to become Ontario’s next premier needs no foreign analogue. He is first, foremost and forever a Ford. He honed his political persona long before Trump honed his, and his family […]

Ontario PCs searching for weak spot in surging New Democrats

May 22 2018 — Chris Selley — Let us peer back through the mists of history to a time called A Few Months Ago. Ontarians were telling pollsters they were sick of Kathleen Wynne and her Liberal government, but they nevertheless seemed tolerant of some of their policies: polls found solid support for the $15 minimum wage, expanding rent control and cutting […]

Liberals still don’t get why people are so upset by abortion clause in Summer Jobs program

Apr 27 2018 — Chris Selley — Wednesday’s parliamentary outrage du jour was an online summer job posting from Dogwood, a B.C. environmental group. The successful applicant will “help (Dogwood’s) organizing network stop the Kinder Morgan pipeline and tanker project,” and she will make $15 an hour thanks to the generosity of the Canadian taxpayer. The Canada Summer Jobs Program distributes funds […]

With Doug Ford, Ontario’s Tories take a big risk

Mar 11 2018 — Chris Selley — In the end, maybe caucus had it right. If more than anything else Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives wanted to win on June 7 then maybe they should have stuck with interim leader Vic Fedeli. If the ultra-folksy MPP for Nipissing wasn’t the most compelling imaginable premier-in-waiting, he would certainly have cut a less divisive figure than […]

Who is Caroline Mulroney? Ontario PC leadership candidate needs more than name recognition to win over party

Feb 5 2018 — Chris Selley — Caroline Mulroney has name recognition. But recognizing her last name won’t tell most Ontarians much that’s useful about the latest candidate for leader of the provincial Progressive Conservatives — official announcement is to come Monday — and, if all goes to plan, the province’s next premier. On Sunday, in the pub attached to the north […]

Everyone take a breath — Ontario’s PCs have chosen a reasonable path to picking their new leader

Feb 1 2018 — Chris Selley — And … exhale. Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives took a step back from the brink late Wednesday night when the party executive approved rules for a leadership contest that for some time seemed in danger of not happening. Almost exactly a week after former leader Patrick Brown’s stunning middle-of-the-night departure amidst allegations of sexual assault and coercion […]