National Newswatch

Where are the truly bilingual federal Conservative leadership candidates?

Jan 25 2017 — Steve Paikin — One of the most exciting leadership conventions I ever covered took place more than 30 years ago, in Ottawa. The Progressive Conservative chief, Joe Clark, had put his leadership on the line, having failed to secure what he considered a satisfactory level of support from party delegates at the preceding leadership review. So there we […]

Can civility return to politics?

Nov 5 2016 — Steve Paikin — Michael Ignatieff once told me a story that, sadly, was a sign of the times in Ottawa, during his tenure as the federal Liberal Party leader. It was very early in the morning and Ignatieff found himself checking in at the ticket counter at Ottawa’s international airport. He saw a Conservative backbench MP at the […]

Is this the beginning of the end for the federal NDP?

Oct 17 2016 — Steve Paikin — On the face of it, the federal New Democratic Party is in rather familiar territory: a solid third place standing in the House of Commons, with an experienced politician leading the charge. But, this time, it really does feel different, and the NDP may be at an existential moment in its history. It wasn’t that […]

Everyone wants to run for Patrick Brown’s PCs, but not everyone should

Oct 4 2016 — Steve Paikin — Ontario’s opposition leader finds himself, in some ways, in an enviable situation these days. Despite the fact Ontarians barely know him, he’s got a huge lead over the governing Liberals in the most recent public opinion polls. And despite fumbling the sex education issue badly, his Progressive Conservatives won a recent byelection in Scarborough-Rouge River […]

You don’t have to wait till 2018 to see provincial election campaigns

Sep 20 2016 — Steve Paikin — Media are often accused of filtering every announcement by the Ontario Liberals through the prism of: how does this help them win the next election? Liberals are constantly telling us in the media that the next election is still a year and a half away, and can’t you people just consider how our policies will […]

Should Patrick Brown be forgiven for his sex-ed snafu?

Aug 31 2016 — Steve Paikin — Let’s get this clear right off the top: no Canadian kid grows up dreaming of being Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition. You grow up dreaming of being prime minister or premier. But the fact is, as often as not, the road to the top job often goes through the worst job in politics. Look […]

What I wish I could have asked Stephen Harper

Aug 30 2016 — Steve Paikin — In January, 2013, I found myself at an event at which then-prime minister Stephen Harper was the guest speaker. At one moment in the evening, he was holding court with a small number of people I knew. So I sashayed over and joined the crowd. I began by asking the PM when he was going […]

A perfect cabinet? Some Italian Liberals disagree

Nov 6 2015 — Steve Paikin — The initial reaction to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s cabinet has been overwhelmingly positive. The PM kept his promise to have his cabinet “look like Canada” by having half of his ministers be men, and half be women — unprecedented in Canadian history (although Bob Rae got close when he unveiled his cabinet in 1990 at […]

A Brewing Controversy in the Conservative Party of Canada

Mar 26 2014 — Steve Paikin — First it was the Liberal Party of Canada that had its problems with so-called “open nominations” for candidates seeking to run in the pending Trinity-Spadina byelection. Now the Conservative Party of Canada is having its problems around the same kinds of issues, with an added layer of complication because of a personal relationship between the party’s executive […]

Timing wasn’t on Bob Rae’s side

Jun 22 2013 — Steve Paikin — Robert Keith Rae has had one of the most unusual and distinctive careers of any politician in Canadian history. And if not for some bad timing a few times along the way, he might even have done more.