Friday, Sept. 19, 2014
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Mulcair’s policy gambit risky, but right

While Justin Trudeau is strong when it comes to personality, he’s weak when it comes to policy. And this weakness explains why Tom Mulcair is releasing his policy planks now.

Harper faces frustratingly fuzzy future

What’s frustrating Stephen Harper isn’t the Conservative Party’s consistently poor showing in public polls, or the scandals which have plagued his government or his increasingly toxic relationship with the media. What would irk him is the fuzzy nature of Canada’s political future.

Has Trudeau become boring?

Social media provides forum for partisan loopiness, but don’t ban it

Trudeau: Photo op superstar

Photo ops matter because we are a visual species; strong images move us.

Union leader should temper his rhetoric

During the next federal election Sid Ryan and his union allies won’t be able to play the same political role as they did in Ontario; certainly they won’t be able to spend the same sort of money on media ads to defeat Harper as they did to defeat Hudak.

How to embrace a problem: Conservatives can use bad polls to fundraise

If a problem can’t be avoided, sometimes it should be embraced. To see what I mean just consider the Conservative Party of Canada and its ‘poll problem,’ which can be defined thusly: ‘Almost every public domain poll that’s come out over the past year or so, has the Conservatives trailing the Justin Trudeau-led Liberals.’

Harper’s stance on Israel is good politics: Gerry Nicholls

Prime Minister Stephen Harper still owns the ‘Israel is our best friend’ position and that could ultimately pay political dividends.

Activist Centrism: Canada’s new ideology

Too bad it has one major drawback. It makes for good politics, but it doesn’t necessarily make for good economic policy.

A fundraising experiment the NDP should avoid: Gerry Nicholls

Harper’s not your typical federal leader: Nicholls

Despite his current bad poll numbers, Prime Minister Stephen Harper is still the party’s most able campaigner, he’s still its most brilliant political tactician and, most importantly, he’s still one of the few politicians who can unite the normally fractious conservative movement.

How to win an election in two easy steps

Voters chose the devil they knew rather than take a chance on the devil that appeared to be charting an unknown and perhaps painful and frightening course.

Gerry Nicholls on his hazy, lazy, political predictions

My predictions on the electoral strategies of PM Stephen Harper, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and the NDP’s Thomas Mulcair.

Forced dues blues, unions risk triggering public backlash against political activities: Nicholls

It would be better for everybody concerned if union leaders stopped using forced dues to finance political campaigns. It would protect the rights of unionized employees and shield unions from criticisms about the nature of their political funding.

Why I can’t write a Harper ‘tell all’ book

I never had a problem working with Stephen Harper. And yes, I got to know him extremely well, seeing both his good and bad sides.

Political grudge match: ideologues vs. professionals

Maybe Canadian ideologues are too docile, maybe they are giving in to political pragmatism, or maybe they just find it’s easier to just send their party leader a nasty letter.

Trudeau’s drive for ideological purity

Perhaps Justin Trudeau would rethink his rigid ideological sterilization policy if he realized that the social conservative colossus he fears is more mirage than reality.

Harper’s a political warrior, and that’s okay: Gerry Nicholls

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s instinct to always go on the offensive has, politically-speaking, much more of an upside than a downside.

Trudeau and Wynne, two Liberals boldly going in different directions

Sometimes campaigning like a Klingon can work and sometimes it makes more sense to emulate the goody two-shoes of the Federation.

Why Harper doesn’t care if the media like him

Prime Minister Stephen Harper runs tough, ‘take-no-prisoners’ style election campaigns, exactly the kind the media detests; he shuns in-depth interviews and he imposes savage message discipline on his caucus.


Parliamentary Calendar
Friday, September 19, 2014
Lobbyists, MPs get in on the ice bucket challenge for ALS Sept. 3, 2014

Photo courtesy Summa Strategies
The team at Summa Strategies took the ice bucket challenge last week at the Parliament Pub. Summa challenged board members from the Government Relations Institute of Canada (GRIC) to take it next. From left: intern John McHughan, vice-chairman Tim Powers, senior adviser Louis-Alexandre Lanthier, consultant Kate Harrison, vice-president Jim Armour, vice-president Robin MacLachlan, president Tracey Hubley, senior adviser Michele Austin, and consultant Angela Christiano.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
The Government Relations Institute of Canada board members take the ice bucket challenge.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
GRIC directors feel the chill.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
From left: GRIC president Andre Albinati, secretary Joanne Dobson, board members Kevin Desjardins and Alayne Crawford, treasurer Phil Cartwright, and board members Alex Maheu and Jason Kerr.
Photograph provided Hill and Knowlton Strategies
Health Minister Rona Ambrose gets in on the ice bucket challenge.
Photograph courtesy Hill and Knowlton Strategies
NDP Leader Tom Mulcair.
Photograph courtesy Hill and Knowlton Strategies
Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau.