National Newswatch

Justin Trudeau joins Burnaby South byelection circus

Feb 12 2019 — Daphne Bramham — Usually a federal party leader running in a riding is enough to spark more than a frisson of interest. It’s certainly attracted the attention of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Ignoring the sometime tradition of not running a candidate against another leader, Trudeau is actively campaigning in Burnaby South this week. Yet, even if NDP Leader […]

Hereditary chiefs demand their court-ordered right to be consulted

Jan 10 2019 — Daphne Bramham — For most of the last 50 years, Indigenous people have tried to negotiate, litigate and protest their way to a new relationship with Canada. In the past 21 years, they have won landmark rulings upholding their title to traditional territories, and their inherent rights including the right to self-government. Repeatedly, the Supreme Court has ruled […]

Reforming the Senate by stealth

Nov 26 2018 — Daphne Bramham — These days, it’s proportional representation that most Canadians, especially British Columbians, think about if they think about democratic reform at all. There’s the provincial referendum and before that the federal Liberals’ briefly toyed with getting rid of first-past-the-post before jettisoning the idea.

Are British Columbians ready for mad Max and his People’s Party?

Nov 12 2018 — Daphne Bramham — People’s Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier was running late for his meeting with the Vancouver Sun and Province editorial board. His aide was the recently elected vice-president of a Vancouver Island constituency association, a voluble, stay-at-home mom who has never been involved in politics before. Wobbling off to try to locate her leader, I […]

Nobody said democracy was easy

Oct 18 2018 — Daphne Bramham — By the time my neighbour, Dave, goes to vote on Saturday, he’ll have spent more than five hours poring over the candidates’ lists for Vancouver mayor, council, school and park boards. He’s read their policies and the parties’ platforms as well as what’s been published in the newspapers. He’s talked to friends both on the […]

Learning from the past is as important as governments saying sorry

Nov 29 2017 — Daphne Bramham — Over the years governments have made a number of apologies for past wrongs inflicted on minority communities. Tuesday’s apology by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to the LGBTQ community is only the latest. Previously, Ottawa has apologized and compensated First Nations children who were forced into residential schools, as well as Japanese-Canadians rounded up and sent […]

Blackmore welcomes being found guilty in B.C. polygamy case

Jul 25 2017 — Daphne Bramham — It took four hours in court listening to the judge read key sections of her 162-page decision before two fundamentalist Mormon leaders finally heard the verdict. Guilty. Winston Blackmore, 60, was found guilty of knowingly having entered into conjugal unions with 24 women in religious ceremonies even though he was already legally married to another […]

Is equity policy linked to NDP’s precarious grip on power?

Jul 19 2017 — Daphne Bramham — It only took a century, but for the first time there are as many women as men in British Columbia’s cabinet. The New Democrats were the first major party in the province’s history to have more female candidates than male. Although the electoral results suggest that voters are gender blind, the B.C. NDP’s two milestones […]

Seattle wants to tax the rich so the poor can afford to live there

Jul 13 2017 — Daphne Bramham — Amid the mansions of tech billionaires and millionaires, the luxury stores and upscale eateries, Seattle is having an existential crisis. There’s a deepening wealth gap and housing costs are soaring beyond the reach of many working people, including software engineers whose salaries average $120,000 a year (and those are U.S. dollars). And the question that’s […]

Christy Clark raises much and donates little

Jun 5 2017 — Daphne Bramham — There’s a glaring irony in the phrase “pay-to-play” when it comes to B.C. politics. While developers, oil companies, banks, unions and lobbyists clearly got the memo, B.C.’s fundraiser in chief apparently didn’t. Christy Clark helped raise $7.6 million for the B.C. Liberals in 2016. But the premier and party leader didn’t contribute a dollar of […]