National Newswatch

No rollcall votes in Commons if new electronic voting app adopted

Jan 21 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — The COVID-19 pandemic is about to force another big break from tradition in the House of Commons: MPs using an app on their smartphones or laptops to cast votes remotely. Party whips are still discussing some unresolved details, the most important of which is ensuring Canadians will be able to see how their […]

Poll finds strong support for COVID-19 curfews despite doubts about effectiveness

Jan 19 2021 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Almost two-thirds of Canadians would support a nightly curfew if necessary to curb the spread of COVID-19 — even though they're not convinced it would be effective, a new poll suggests.Sixty-five per cent of respondents to a poll by Léger and the Association for Canadian Studies said they would support temporary curfews in […]

Government Senate rep says constitutional challenges to MAID bill inevitable

Dec 15 2020 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — The government's representative in the Senate concedes it's possible that a bill to expand access to medically assisted dying may be struck down as unconstitutional by the courts. But while parliamentarians must be guided by court rulings, Sen. Marc Gold argued Tuesday they also have a duty to try to balance competing rights […]

Senators likely to propose major amendments to assisted dying bill

Dec 14 2020 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — It was out of the political frying pan and into the fire Monday  for the Trudeau government's bill to expand access to medically assisted dying. Opening debate on Bill C-7 began in the Senate, where the government has no control over independent-minded, less-partisan senators who appear determined to amend the legislation. Senators offered […]

Commons passes assisted-dying bill after Conservatives end filibuster

Dec 10 2020 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — A bill to expand access to medical assistance in dying was approved Thursday by the House of Commons after the Conservatives ended a days-long filibuster. Bill C-7 passed by a vote of 212-107, with the support of all but four Liberals — two of whom voted against and two of whom abstained — […]

Lametti questions Conservatives’ sincerity in wanting to protect vulnerable

Dec 9 2020 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Justice Minister David Lametti is questioning the sincerity of Conservatives who contend they're holding up a bill on assisted dying because it doesn't do enough to protect vulnerable people with disabilities. Despite a looming, court-imposed deadline of Dec. 18, the Conservatives have been talking out the clock on Bill C-7, which would expand […]

Battle lines drawn for first ministers’ meeting on health care

Dec 9 2020 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — Premiers aren't expecting Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to agree immediately to their demand for at least $28 billion more each year for health care. First ministers are scheduled to meet via conference call Thursday — a long-awaited session that was supposed to be devoted to the premiers' unanimous call for a big increase […]

Speakers’ Spotlight threatened after being caught up in WE affair: co-founder

Dec 7 2020 — Joan Bryden — OTTAWA — A small business that used to book speaking engagements for Justin Trudeau and his family has been caught in the partisan crossfire of the WE Charity affair. Martin Perelmuter, who co-founded Speakers' Spotlight 25 years ago with his wife, Farah, says his company has been harassed and its employees intimidated and threatened since […]