National Newswatch

Parliamentarians will be hearing about the importance of the CPTPP bill this summer

Jun 22 2018 — Alex Binkley — Farm groups want passage of the bill to be a priority when Parliament resumes in September. OTTAWA—MPs and Senators can expect to hear plenty from farmers all summer about the importance of quickly passing the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) bill when they return to Parliament in the fall, farm group representatives vow. They […]

War Under the Peace Tower

Jun 20 2018 — Glen Pearson — In the parliamentary calendar, it is inevitable that the subject of Question Period’s dysfunction will emerge, often with a twinge of anger. It’s happening again in these last few days, led by the Toronto Star researching into the veracity and truthfulness of that one time in the House where the government must account for its […]

Are issues getting too complex for real debate?

Jun 20 2018 — Don Lenihan — Yesterday in this space, I called for an election on how Canada should respond to Trump. In a note, public affairs expert Andrew Beattie neatly laid out what I believe is a widely shared fear about such a debate: the issues are too complex, and it would quickly degenerate into bombast and sloganeering. I see […]

Reforming Parliament: Time to hear from all the players

Jun 20 2018 — John Milloy — Is representative democracy in Canada in trouble? The Samara Centre for Democracy, a Canadian charity working to improve politics thinks so.  Their recently released report, Flip the Script, paints a grim picture of Canada’s system of elected representation.  Based on interviews with 54 Members of Parliament exiting after the 2105 federal election, it portrays a hyper-partisan House […]

Alberta-based pork producer says mid-sized processors need financial assistance

Jun 19 2018 — Alex Binkley — Labour shortage for rural employers is a major headache. An Alberta-based pork producer says farming operations in Canada face more obstacles and less support than in the United States and are losing ground competitively compared to international competitors. Ray Price, President of Sunterra Farms Ltd., which also has operations in Ontario, South Dakota and Iowa, […]

Would an Election on ‘Managing Trump’ Solve Anything?

Jun 19 2018 — Don Lenihan — Yesterday’s byelection in Chicoutimi-Le Fjord was bad news for the Liberals. That’s aluminum country and Liberals were surely hoping the tariffs would translate into a Trump-bump. They didn’t. Does that kill any chance of a national election? No. There is a serious argument to be made for an election, but it turns on Canadians’ national interest, […]

Wounded Warrior

Jun 19 2018 — Glen Pearson — I caught his stare as I was brought into the House of Commons for the first time and just couldn’t read it.  It was late-2006, shortly after I had won a by-election as a Liberal in London, Ontario.  Paul Dewar had entered the House as a newcomer for the NDP only a few months before.  […]

Consumer tastes changing rapidly in food sector

Jun 18 2018 — Alex Binkley — Canada has to become better at adding value to food products. The food business is undergoing tremendous change as consumer tastes change and Canada needs to take advantage of that trend, says Don Buckingham, President and CEO of the Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute. “Consumer preferences and retail food markets are changing extremely fast and food […]

Ontario Liberal Legacy Still Solid

Jun 18 2018 — Andrew Steele — In the recent election, voters crushed the Ontario Liberals to just seven seats and elected Doug Ford as Premier. As a result, some may be tempted to call the defeat a repudiation of the broad Liberal policy. But the reality is the election served to enshrine the core Liberal transformations of the last fifteen years. […]

Food safety is top ingredient in boosting Canadian food exports

Jun 15 2018 — Alex Binkley — OTTAWA—Any way you slice it, food safety is the key issue for consumers at home and abroad when they’re buying groceries, says Jean-Charles Le Vallee, Associate Director of Food Horizons Canada (FHC), “Food safety is the first question a foreign buyer will ask,” Lavelle told the Senate agriculture committee. “If they want to import to […]

CFIA regulatory reform finally reaches the finish line

Jun 14 2018 — Alex Binkley — Changes will be phased in during the next three years. OTTAWA–Converting 14 sets of federal food safety regulations into one overall package took the better part of five years but the Canadian Food Inspection Agency finally released its rules to implement the Safe Food for Canadians Act June 13. The first changes will come into […]