National Newswatch

The noise and the stakes

Oct 15 2019 — Paul Wells — Much of what’s happened in this miserable campaign has been healthy. If the seat projections from our friend Philippe J. Fournier are accurate, the two largest parties have both lost support since the campaign began. And the worst part of the campaign was the nine days that began with the TVA French debate on Oct. […]

Jagmeet Singh’s secret weapon: The way he talks.

Oct 15 2019 — — When it comes to likability, Jagmeet Singh has gained ground against the other leaders in the election campaign, after impressing Canadians in two English debates. There are reasons for that, and they might not all relate to policy. Singh’s relatable manner of speech and his ability to switch between multiple speaking styles could be major […]

This week’s 338Canada projection: ‘Prime Minister Andrew Scheer’?

Oct 15 2019 — — The next time someone tells you leaders debates do not matter in a campaign, you’ll be able to point towards this 2019 federal election. While voting intentions had remained mostly stable for the first half of the campaign, it appears Canadians have payed close attention to the leaders’ debates. In the past two weeks, pollsters […]

The best days of Andrew Scheer’s campaign

Oct 14 2019 — Shannon Proudfoot — Andrew Scheer’s rally in Langley, B.C. was supposed to start at 6 pm, but still there is no telltale ripple of something happening. A woman of about 70 approaches a man adjusting the sound equipment and demands, “Are you with Scheer?” Clearly just a contractor hired for the event, he hedges, unsure what she wants. […]

Le French debate: saving the best for last

Oct 11 2019 — Paul Wells — Forgive me for talking shop at first. Thursday’s commission-certified French-language debate was the best-run of the four-ish debates this campaign has seen, and I suspect you’ll read the same conclusion from just about everyone who writes about it. There are reasons for this. Everyone is praising Patrice Roy, a Radio-Canada anchor and veteran broadcast professional […]

A 338Canada projection: Have the Tories blown it in Quebec?

Oct 8 2019 — — At the outset of the campaign, no serious data showed that the Bloc québécois could be a major player in this election. It appeared the Bloc would remain a fringe party fighting to reach the official party status threshold of 12 seats in the House of Commons. Yves-François Blanchet, the charismatic new Bloc leader, sought […]

Well, that was helpful

Oct 8 2019 — Paul Wells — “We’re definitely going to have a lively debate tonight,” CTV National News chief anchor Lisa LaFlamme said a few minutes into Monday’s properly certified commission-designed English-language national leaders’ debate. Several minutes later, Toronto Star Ottawa bureau chief Susan Delacourt promised lots of further debate on the issue at hand, which was the economy. Or Indigenous […]

Andrew Scheer: Canada’s first American prime minister?

Oct 5 2019 — Jason Markusoff — Boris Johnson was bidding to shed his United States citizenship back in 2015, when he was mayor of London and long before he ascended to the prime ministership of Britain. The New York-born moptop said then that he planned talk to the American ambassador, but wasn’t confident of finding any fast lane. “It is a […]

How the Trudeau government’s Syrian consul fiasco went down

Oct 5 2019 — Terry Glavin — When Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland furiously ordered her officials to revoke the diplomatic credentials obtained by a Montreal businessman who was notorious for his public, over-the-top enthusiasms for the bloody Baathist regime in Damascus, there was one important question she wanted answered, straightaway. How could it have happened that the Office of the Chief […]

The Tory climate plan unplugged

Oct 4 2019 — Stephen Maher — In TVA’s French language debate Wednesday night, moderator Pierre Bruneau asked Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer if he would cut a federal subsidy for electric vehicles as Doug Ford cut a provincial program when he took power in Ontario. “We have assured Canadians that we will continue this program until the end of the schedule,” Scheer […]

The missing ingredient in this federal election

Oct 2 2019 — Paul Wells — Surely they’re having us on. At some point, don’t the leaders of the major federal parties have to show up together in one place, announce they’ve been playing an elaborate practical joke on us and cancel the election? “We’ll have the real election after New Year’s,” Justin Trudeau will tell the Canadian people. “We sure […]

What Canada’s pro-oil boosters fail to grasp about climate change

Sep 27 2019 — Stephen Maher — The Liberals announced Tuesday that, if re-elected, they would commit to reducing Canada’s carbon output to zero by 2050, which would put us in the first rank of countries in the fight against climate change, if we find a way to hit our targets. Environment Minister Catherine McKenna acknowledged that the party doesn’t know how […]

Justin Trudeau performs a very fine balance

Sep 23 2019 — — Rainclouds began drizzling overhead as Justin Trudeau re-emerged from the Portage Bakery, an 85-year-old Italian-Canadian institution in Niagara Falls, Ont. But the weather didn’t turn away the crowd of a hundred-odd supporters, most of whom gleefully returned to the Trudeaumania of 2015. The man himself didn’t say much—no speech, no rally—but maybe that’s for the […]