Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014
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THE FULL NELSON
Policing as an anomaly in federal-provincial relations

  
Canada’s got phony fixed election date laws and that may be a good thing: Nelson Wiseman

A virtue of the Canadian system is its fixed electoral cycle.


  
Elections overhaul bill will barely affect conduct of elections, results

When the wind of electoral change blows, the bill’s changes to the Elections Act and to what Elections Canada does will prove to be of little significance to the outcome.


  
To vouch or not to vouch: that is the question

To mollify both the critics and supporters of vouching there is a solution: maintain the practice but place the vouched ballots in a sealed envelope at each polling station.


  
NDP fortunes shrinking

Charisma only goes so far. Trudeau senior had it and triumphed very soon after becoming the Liberal leader in 1968. The Tories are unpopular and the Trudeau effect could wear off as it did for his father, whose popularity really only revived after his death. Meanwhile, Mulcair is biding his time.


  
Nelson Wiseman: the low voter turnout a problem?

  
The road to Senate reform is a cul-de-sac

The Supreme Court, like the Quebec Court of Appeal, will almost certainly tell the government that its Senate reform proposals do not pass constitutional muster and, since an accord with the provinces is a non-starter, the Senate status quo will prevail. Get used to it.


  
Politics shouldn’t always be a team sport

In Canada, MPs, and MLAs are compelled to be team players under their coach’s thumb.


  
Designating Canada’s monarch

Parliament’s new act opens a potential assortment of problems. A better tack might have been for the Prime Minister to tell the British that their BNA Act of 1867 offers a sufficient basis for Canada’s compliance with whatever new act the British adopt with respect to the office of the Queen.


  
Comparing Harper and Diefenbaker

Both John Diefenbaker and Stephen Harper were born in Ontario. Both moved to the Prairies and became prime ministers.


  
The PM and the challenge of Senate reform

  
The mystique and the promise of Trudeau

The danger to the Liberals is that if they fail to break through in the next election and at least form the official opposition, the consequences may be fatal. It could be game over.


  
Ontario: Region-state? Dependant-State? Kingmaker

Ontario will gain 15 seats in the next federal election; together, Alberta and British Columbia will gain 12. The key to 24 Sussex Drive in 2011 was in Ontario. It will continue to be so for a while.


  
How prorogation may be leading to coalition governments

The new practice of political prorogation, therefore, may lead to increased receptivity to coalition governments. Much of the democratic world has them, but Canada has been a laggard on this score. Catch-up may be coming.


  
To my Godfather Preston

What has happened to our promised free votes in Parliament, the loosening of party discipline, the plans for citizen-initiated referenda, and the ability to recall MPs?


  
Undoing the Prime Minister

The greatest danger to the PM is therefore from within, not without. Paradoxically, it is from those MPs who have the least enviable jobs in Parliament: muzzled government backbenchers, those who must shut up and cannot publicly rail or criticize as opposition MPs are free to do.


  
Democratizing Senate not in Harper’s interest

The federal government’s Senate reform bill will likely be buried because the Conservatives are behaving like their Liberal predecessors—touting reform but doing very little.


  
Canada’s bilingual regime

The two solitudes have grown further apart as more French Canadians outside of Quebec have intermarried, assimilated, and lost their facility in French.


  
Atlantic Canada could be a leading political indicator

As the welfare state has embedded itself ever more firmly in Atlantic Canadians’ lives, the NDP has implanted itself in Atlantic Canada’s traditional conservative political culture. The NDP can no longer be easily dismissed as outsiders ‘from away’ who preach alien doctrines and pursue utopian sorties.


  
Left, right, and centre in Canadian politics

Few politicians call themselves leftist or rightist, although NDP leader Thomas Mulcair has come close by denying he is a centrist: ‘We want to move the centre to us, not move to centre.’


  

Parliamentary Calendar
Wednesday, December 31, 1969
HILL LIFE & PEOPLE SLIDESHOWS
Chantal Hébert's Morning After book launch at Métropolitain Brasserie in Ottawa: Sept. 24 Sept. 30, 2014

The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Official Languages Commissioner Graham Fraser, a former Toronto Star Hill journalist, and Jim Armour, vice-president at Summa Strategies, a former Conservative and Reform Party staffer.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Chantal Hébert, national affairs columnist for The Toronto Star and author of The Morning After: The 1995 Quebec Referendum and The Day That Almost Was. Ms. Hébert launched her book on Sept. 24 in Ottawa at the Métropolitain Brasserie where plenty of political players turned up from the Hill.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Jean-Pierre Kingsley, Canada's former chief electoral officer, and Quebec Liberal Senator Dennis Dawson.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Bruce Anderson, a partner at i2 Ideas & Issues Advertising, who hosted the book launch. Mr. Anderson is a panellist on CBC's At Issue along with Ms. Hébert and Andrew Coyne.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Kate Purchase, communications director for Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Quebec Liberal Sen. Dennis Dawson, Jim Patrick of Shaw Communications, and Global TV's Tom Clark.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Official Languages Commissioner Graham Fraser and Bruce Anderson of i2 Ideas & Issues Advertising.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Patrick Kennedy, director of government relations for CF Industries, flips through a copy of Chantal Hébert's book, The Morning After: The 1995 Quebec Referendum and The Day That Almost Was.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Jim Armour, vice-president at Summa Strategies, is the happy new owner of The Morning After.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Chantal Hébert and former Conservative MP Ted Menzies.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Journalist Daniel L'Heureux, Mylène Dupere, communications director for Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, and Jean Lapierre, who helped Ms. Hébert write the book. Mr. Lapierre is also a former Bloc Québécois MP who later joined Paul Martin's Liberals and was a federal Cabinet minister. Today, he's a pundit.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Leslie Swartman, director of public affairs at MDA Information Systems, and former Liberal Cabinet minister Jean Lapierre. Ms. Swartman used to work for Mr. Lapierre when he was in the Paul Martin Cabinet.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Anne Marie Creskey, publisher of The Hill Times, and Hill Times reporter Rachel Aiello.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Former Conservative MP Ted Menzies and Global TV's Tom Clark.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Bruce Anderson and Chantal Hébert.
The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright
Michel Liboiron, director of government relations at CIBC, and Postmedia News reporter and columnist Stephen Maher.

MICHAEL DE ADDER'S TAKE