National Newswatch

Jody Wilson-Raybould on her exit as justice minister

Jan 14 2019 — Shannon Proudfoot — Right after an unexpectedly eventful cabinet shuffle on Monday morning, the newly sworn-in Minister of Veterans Affairs, Jody Wilson-Raybould—who was replaced as justice minister and attorney general by David Lametti—spoke to reporters about her new post. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and members of his newly tweaked cabinet took questions outside Rideau Hall on a January […]

This is what’s wrong with Canada’s Right

Jan 11 2019 — Shannon Proudfoot — During Ontario’s Progressive Conservative leadership race last winter, Bill Fox donated to Caroline Mulroney’s campaign. The party immediately began carpet-bombing him with fundraising messages denouncing the “downtown elites” they were going to take down. “When you live in a condominium in Leslieville at the corner of Dundas and Carlaw, it’s pretty hard not to take […]

Andrew Scheer’s choose-your-own-adventure for 2019

Dec 17 2018 — Shannon Proudfoot — Remember the Choose Your Own Adventure books, where you’d read a chunk of narration starring you, then decide on a course of action and turn to the corresponding page to find out what happened next? Here is one for the Andrew Scheer of 2019: You are a Canadian politician who is plenty experienced but still […]

Nathan Cullen: The 2018 Parliamentarian of the Year

Nov 6 2018 — Shannon Proudfoot — Once in a while, in the home stretch of a speech in the House of Commons, Nathan Cullen will start to feel the themes from the beginning of his remarks effortlessly circle back to him. It feels less like he’s making that happen than simply witnessing it. “You’re sort of becoming an observer, watching the […]

Justin Trudeau on populism, the trouble with grand gestures and fear

Sep 18 2018 — Shannon Proudfoot — In a world roiled by Trumps and Fords, polarized electorates and often-toxic public discourse, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau meditated on the nature of democracy and the reasons for its seeming fragility at the moment, in an interview on Monday. Trudeau sat down for an hour-long interview with senior writer Paul Wells for the Maclean’s Live […]

Justin Trudeau’s sunny ways won in 2015. Can his brand survive?

Jul 31 2018 — Shannon Proudfoot — President Donald Trump had already vamoosed early from the G7 summit in early June when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stepped in front of a “Charlevoix” backdrop emblazoned with the silhouettes of an unmistakably Canadian Shield forest. It would be “with regret, but it would be with absolute certainty and firmness” that Canada would soon enact […]

Kathleen Wynne can feel your pain

May 24 2018 — Shannon Proudfoot — Kathleen Wynne has an interesting theory about the job of a politician. A few hours after dissolving the 41st Parliament of Ontario to launch her re-election campaign, she was discussing how she processes the public animosity toward her. She’s talked to thousands of people in her career, she says, and there are very few who […]

Why won’t anyone quit the Tory leadership race?

Mar 10 2017 — Shannon Proudfoot — There’s a low-grade peevishness in the air, as though everyone is sweating through their shirts at an overcrowded cocktail party where they’re positive everyone else has overstayed their welcome. At this point, the most relevant question hovering over the Conservative leadership race may not be about policy, future direction or winnability—none of which anyone can […]

Calm in the storm: The rise and rise of Ahmed Hussen

Feb 16 2017 — Shannon Proudfoot — It was the second week of the Trump administration, and the second consecutive Sunday the Prime Minister’s staff spent grinding it out in the office. President Donald Trump’s travel ban on seven Muslim-majority countries had just taken effect, stranding hundreds at airports, held back by customs officials who barely understood their marching orders. Furious protesters […]

Rona Ambrose, the Conservative ringmaster

Feb 9 2017 — Shannon Proudfoot — A couple of Rona Ambrose’s staff members emerge from the inner office of the Leader of the Opposition’s suite in Centre Block, fanning themselves and complaining it’s “like a sauna.” A few minutes later, a window has been propped open—with a scrap of wood, because the century-old panel won’t stay up on its own—to admit […]

Canada’s opposition parties seek leaders—and meaning

Dec 12 2016 — Shannon Proudfoot — The Conservative and NDP leadership races, through to the end of 2016, were looking a bit like a bad art-house film: muddied plotlines, no recognizable names and an interminable running time. But in 2017, these races are all but guaranteed to heat up because the two parties find themselves in quite similar and somewhat dire […]

Honouring Rona Ambrose, the House’s tireless worker

Nov 16 2016 — Shannon Proudfoot — Rona Ambrose has heard all the stories her mother tells about how when her small daughter had only just mastered solid ground, she would scale door frames, scramble up walls and even find her way to the roof. “She just went crazy, because I would get up on top of things and just had no […]

Ottawa drops the hammer on carbon pricing. Now what?

Oct 17 2016 — Shannon Proudfoot — One of Stephen Harper’s most consistent messages on climate change was that it made no sense for Canada to act alone. This country would be happy to be part of the solution when and if other nations did something, the former prime minister argued, but he would not put Canada’s oil and gas industry at […]

Jason Kenney on Kellie Leitch’s values test

Sep 29 2016 — Shannon Proudfoot — ‘I don’t think she’s ever thought deeply about these questions,’ Kenney says of former cabinet colleague Leitch. Q: You’ve made a few pointed comments about Kellie Leitch’s immigrant values test proposal. With your cabinet experience, what’s your take on the screening people have to go through? Is there a problem she’s perceiving that needs to […]