National Newswatch

Quebec’s Bill 62 declares war on sunglasses

Oct 21 2017 — Chantal Hébert — Somewhere in the Quebec government’s legal department, a team of lawyers is bracing to argue in court in what may be the not-too-distant future that the wearing of dark sunglasses puts the safety of the province’s public transit system at risk. Ditto presumably in the case of local libraries and city parks. For a province […]

Inside the government’s $200,000 budget artwork

Oct 20 2017 — Alex Ballingall — Between Feb. 1 and March 13 of this year, functionaries in some of the most powerful corners of the federal government, including the finance department and Prime Minister’s Office, were seized with a series of pressing questions. Should the teenage boy on the cover of the upcoming budget, for instance, be really happy with a […]

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 […]

Retired Senator Michael Pitfield, influential Trudeau confidant, has died

Oct 19 2017 — — Retired senator Michael Pitfield, a longtime confidant of former prime minister Pierre Trudeau and a man who wielded enormous political influence, died Thursday after a decades-long struggle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 80. Pitfield was the elder Trudeau’s clerk of the Privy Council and secretary to cabinet. Senator Pitfield played an especially prominent role in […]

Bill Morneau does the right thing two years too late

Oct 19 2017 — Tim Harper — “I don’t think I’ve been down here before,” Bill Morneau said as he strode to the podium Thursday afternoon, He was talking about a subterranean news conference room on Parliament Hill, but he might as well have been talking about his political fortunes. Morneau had been everywhere this week — Stouffville, Erinsville, and Markham, Ont., […]

Just For Laughs founder Gilbert Rozon resigns over abuse allegations

Oct 18 2017 — Allan Woods — Gilbert Rozon, the impresario behind Montreal’s world-famous Just for Laughs Festival, has quit the entertainment company over unspecified allegations of abuse. He made the announcement on his Facebook page Wednesday evening. It was confirmed as authentic by a spokesperson for the festival as well as the organizing committee of Montreal’s 375th anniversary celebrations, where Rozon […]

Two years in, Trudeau’s rookie ministers have accounted for much of the government’s grief

Oct 18 2017 — Chantal Hébert — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau celebrates the second anniversary of his election victory this week with his finance minister in a self-imposed exile from the House of Commons that the opposition parties would gladly make permanent. Three parliamentary sitting days in the ethical storm that has engulfed Bill Morneau over his decision to keep control, albeit […]

Quebec television personality Eric Salvail taking ‘pause’ after reports of sexual misconduct

Oct 18 2017 — Allan Woods — One of Quebec’s most popular and powerful television personalities is taking a “professional pause” after the publication of a report alleging he has a lengthy history of subjecting those in his employ to harassment and engaging in inappropriate sexual behaviour. Eric Salvail has won numerous awards for his zany late-night talk show and just last […]

Bombardier jet giveaway hands Donald Trump another victory

Oct 18 2017 — Tom Walkom — Score another win for Donald Trump’s high-handed version of protectionism. Monday’s decision by Montreal-based Bombardier to give away control over its much-vaunted C Series jet virtually guarantees that the U.S. will get the lion’s share of any new jobs created. It also threatens to saddle taxpayers in Quebec and the rest of Canada with a […]

Liberals won’t act on proposals to aid news industry

Oct 18 2017 — Alex Boutilier — The Liberal government appears to be taking a pass on several proposals put forward by a parliamentary committee to assist Canada’s struggling news industry. In a letter to Heritage Committee chair Hedy Fry, Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly said Monday the government recognizes the “important role” news media plays in Canadian society.

Morneau walks himself into a political crisis

Oct 17 2017 — Tim Harper — There is nothing quite like the sight of opposition politicians circling when they smell political blood in the water. Particularly when the fish is as big as the federal finance minister. Tuesday, Bill Morneau swam away. It did nothing to slow the Commons feeding frenzy. This is not the way the Liberals envisioned celebrating Small […]