National Newswatch

MPs scramble to pass priority bills before summer but they could stall in Senate

Jun 23 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — The House of Commons rose Wednesday for the summer — and possibly for an election — after giving eleventh-hour approval to what the minority Liberal government considers its priority legislation. But it's far from certain the Senate will be as accommodating. Three priority bills landed in the Senate in the past couple of […]

PHAC head maintains he’s bound by law not to release docs on fired scientists

Jun 18 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — The head of the Public Health Agency of Canada is showing no sign he's willing to release unredacted documents about the firing of two scientists at the country's highest security laboratory — despite the prospect of being publicly shamed in the House of Commons for his refusal to produce the information. PHAC president […]

‘Unacceptable’ that Inuk MP felt unsafe in House of Commons, Miller says

Jun 16 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — It's a "sad reflection" on Canada that an Inuk MP feels she's been racially profiled by security officials on Parliament Hill, Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller said Wednesday. Mumilaaq Qaqqaq, a rookie New Democrat MP from Nunavut, told the House of Commons on Tuesday night that she does not feel safe on the […]

Canada excoriated as racist failure during farewell speeches by departing MPs

Jun 15 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Canada was excoriated as a racist, hypocritical failure Tuesday as MPs who don't intend to seek re-election said their official farewells to Parliament. Mumilaaq Qaqqaq, the New Democrat MP for Nunavut, used the opportunity to blast Canada as a country built on the oppression of Indigenous People and whose history is "stained with […]

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin files court challenge of his firing from vaccine rollout

Jun 14 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin is asking for a judicial review of the decision to remove him as head of Canada's vaccine logistics, alleging political interference by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and two of his cabinet ministers. Lawyers for Fortin filed an application Monday with the Federal Court, seeking an expedited judicial review of last […]

Lobbying commissioner clears Rob Silver, who is husband of PM’s chief of staff

Jun 10 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Rob Silver, the husband of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's chief of staff, has been cleared of any wrongdoing by the federal lobbying commissioner. Nancy Belanger says Silver spent about 70 minutes cumulatively talking to public office holders about two different emergency aid programs on behalf of mortgage finance company MCAP. She says MCAP […]

Medically assisted deaths rising as Canadians grow more comfortable with the idea

Jun 7 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Almost 7,600 Canadians received medical assistance to end their lives last year, continuing a trend of steady annual increases in cases since the procedure was legalized in 2016. Health Canada official Abby Hoffman provided the lastest statistics Monday at a meeting of the newly launched joint parliamentary committee that is reviewing Canada's assisted […]

Tories foil bid to cut short debate on bill to regulate online streaming services

Jun 4 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — An attempt by the Trudeau government to speed up controversial legislation to regulate online streaming services brought the House of Commons to a virtual standstill Friday. The minority Liberal government, with the support of the Bloc Québécois, had hoped to pass a motion to impose time allocation on a Commons committee that has […]

Liberals tap text messaging platform to directly connect with Canadians

Jun 4 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — The Liberal Party of Canada has adopted a new digital tool to more directly reach supporters and potential voters — the same one increasingly used by celebrities to interact more intimately with their fans through text messages. The party boasts that it is the first political party in the world to use Community, […]

Royal assent given to bill creating national day for truth and reconciliation

Jun 3 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — A bill creating a statutory holiday to commemorate the tragic legacy of residential schools in Canada received royal assent Thursday after passing unanimously in the Senate. The swift passage of Bill C-5 means Sept. 30 will become the first of what is to be an annual national day for truth and reconciliation. Both […]