National Newswatch

When politicians get that faraway look in their eyes

Nov 17 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Every November starting in 2015, it’s been easier to find Canada’s prime minister on the road, far away from Ottawa. Trudeau has now made 29 international trips since he came to power two years ago, according to his office’s own tally this week. That’s more than once a month, basically — and about half of […]

Politically, Wynne’s in a hole. But she’s changing Ontario.

Nov 14 2017 — Susan Delacourt — A year from now, Kathleen Wynne may no longer be the premier of Ontario. But many of the measures she’s been putting in place — from pharmacare to a guaranteed income — may well have taken root in Canada’s most populous province. That’s what’s fascinating about Ontario right now. All these policy pronouncements coming from […]

In praise of outliers in a hyperpartisan world

Nov 10 2017 — Susan Delacourt — On some days in Canadian political news, especially in Ontario, “the Liberals” sound like the busiest politicians on the planet. When they’re not trying to legalize marijuana or experiment with pharmacare and guaranteed income, they’re raising immigration levels and the minimum wage. All those measures actually come from two governments, of course — one headed […]

Eat the rich: When wealth became a wedge issue

Nov 7 2017 — Susan Delacourt — It sounds like a conversation about tax policy, but don’t be fooled by the current political debate over taxes in Canada. What we’re actually hearing is a morality tale — a struggle between the unworthy haves and the ripped-off have-nots. It may not be long before calling someone ‘wealthy’ joins the list of unparliamentary insults […]

Robert Young had politics down to a science

Nov 3 2017 — Susan Delacourt — A wise professor once warned me to be skeptical when reading quotes from political scientists in the media. “We don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes,” he said. “A lot of the time, we only know what we’re reading in the newspapers.” That professor was Robert Young from Western University, who died a few […]

Jason Kenney is ready to be Justin Trudeau’s biggest problem

Oct 31 2017 — Susan Delacourt — When Justin Trudeau went out looking for Conservative boxing partners several years back, Jason Kenney was probably not high on the list of potential opponents. So we can only imagine how that fight would have turned out. But now that the former immigration minister has become the new leader of the United Conservative Party in […]

Jean Yip to vie for late husband Arnold Chan’s seat

Oct 28 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Jean Yip was a political spouse for a little over three years, right up until last month, when her husband, Liberal MP Arnold Chan, died far too young of cancer at age 50. Now Yip has decided to take the full plunge into political life, moving from the sidelines to centre stage. After talking it […]

New envoys to Canada break another glass ceiling

Oct 20 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Firsts for women happen less often in Canada’s capital these days — and that’s probably good news. Julie Payette is the new Governor General, but she’s the fourth woman to occupy that post in this country’s 150-year history. Women have served at the top of the Supreme Court of Canada and even, briefly, in the […]

Liberals are knifing Liberals in public. Ah, nostalgia.

Oct 17 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Justin Trudeau has never been very fond of the “old” Liberal party — “old” generally being defined as people who were Liberals before Trudeau became leader. Is he paying a price now for that bias against the party’s history? Trudeau, who spent his childhood at 24 Sussex Dr., is probably one of the few people […]

As Sears goes dark, middle-class votes may be elusive

Oct 13 2017 — Susan Delacourt — “Retail politics” doesn’t sound all that smart or easy these days in Canada. It’s been a bruising week for the retail business, with the imminent collapse of the Sears department store empire and accompanying job losses all over Canada. There was also the news that the Canada Revenue Agency had some plan to treat employee […]

Please pass the politics: The collapse of the Liberals’ comms game

Oct 10 2017 — Susan Delacourt — In what’s becoming an annual holiday tradition, Liberals all over the country were called to the Thanksgiving feast this past weekend armed with talking points. Yes, I said ‘talking points’. Called ‘Turkey Talk Tools’, they were emailed to any Liberal who needed snappy answers ready for when grumpy uncles or sarcastic cousins started piping up […]

Why Justin Trudeau prefers Ivanka to Donald Trump

Oct 6 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Justin Trudeau is off to Washington next week for what might well be called adventures with the rich and powerful. Or, as his critics might say, another day at the office for this prime minister. Wisecracks aside, Trudeau really is paying a call on Tuesday at a Fortune magazine gathering billed as the summit of […]

Obama, Clinton and the war for reality

Oct 2 2017 — Susan Delacourt — Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton didn’t always agree during their political careers, but they’re sounding very similar warnings these days about the descent of democracy. Both former residents of the White House were in Toronto late last week, doing what former presidents (or would-be presidents) do when they leave elected politics: speaking to large crowds […]