National Newswatch

Liberals have a ‘credibility gap,’ Bronfman, Morneau obscuring Grits’ message to fight for middle class, say pollsters, political observers

Nov 13 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — The federal Liberals are being weighed down by a credibility problem, say pollsters and a former Liberal cabinet minister and their message of fighting for the middle class is getting undermined by a series of controversies tied to taxation and finance. The New Democrats may already be picking up the slack, with the Liberals now […]

Senate swap gives powerful Internal Economy Committee chair to Independents, sets stage for new negotiations next session

Nov 13 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — Negotiations between the Senate’s three largest groups finally ended last week, paving the way for a major rejig of Senate committee seats, and handing committee chair positions to members of the Independent Senators Group for the first time. The deal is only good for the length of this parliamentary session, however, and there are several […]

Singh shuffles former rivals back into the fold

Oct 23 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — New NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has made more changes to his leadership team in the House of Commons, naming Peter Julian the new House leader for the party, and handing critic roles back to his other former rivals for the party leadership. Mr. Julian (New Westminster-Burnaby, B.C.) will replace fellow B.C. MP Murray Rankin (Victoria) […]

Polls show trouble on horizon for Liberals over Morneau’s mess, says Nanos

Oct 23 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — The pile up of controversies tied to Finance Minister Bill Morneau is starting to water down Liberal support, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s move to insert himself into the communications battle is a “risky strategy,” says pollster Nik Nanos, though Liberal MPs publicly say otherwise. The effect of last week’s headlines about Mr. Morneau’s (Toronto […]

‘It’s obviously a farce,’ MPs to grill feds on broken promise to open up PMO, cabinet ministers’ offices to access act

Sep 25 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — Opposition MPs will grill the government over its Access to Information Reform Bill on Monday and Tuesday in the House, after the government pulled the plug on its 2015 election campaign promise to cover the Prime Minister’s Office and all cabinet ministers’ offices under the updated act. “It’s obviously a farce,” said NDP House Leader […]

Huge Health Canada branch could be moved to new ministry, unions blindsided

Sep 13 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — Unions representing most of the employees in Health Canada’s Indigenous services branch have lambasted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government for announcing that the branch would be moved under the jurisdiction of a new minister and likely a new department without consulting them ahead of time. The branch makes up nearly three-quarters of Health Canada’s total […]

Inside the Indigenous Affairs split: ‘nobody is losing their job’ during transition, feds say

Sep 6 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — It will likely be a year before the government makes good on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s pledge to split Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada in two, and “nobody is losing their job” while the details are worked out, says a spokesperson for the department’s two ministers. Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations Carolyn Bennett (Toronto-St. Paul’s, Ont.) […]

House officer, research caucus spending to go public

Aug 9 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — House leaders, whips, the Speaker, and other top players in the House of Commons will have to publicly disclose their spending, with the first report due next summer, thanks to changes made by the Board of Internal Economy in a June meeting. The changes were made as part of the board’s “ongoing commitment to transparency […]

At least five ex-Tory leadership candidates still paying off campaign debt

Aug 2 2017 — Peter Mazereeuw — At least five of 16 former Conservative leadership candidates still have outstanding campaign debts, two months after the contest wrapped with a dramatic victory for Andrew Scheer. Mr. Scheer (Regina-Qu’Appelle, Sask.) came away without any campaign debt, according to his former campaign manager, but his closest rivals in the contest were among those saddled with […]