Friday, April 18, 2014
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Potential Grit leadership candidates should 'stay home' if they can't raise half a million dollars: Sgro

Veteran Liberal MP Judy Sgro says that the party should focus on 'serious candidates' and that 'there is no space' for people who can't raise the $75,000 entry fee.

Grits Hall Findlay, Bertschi question Liberal leadership rules; say they could favour front-runners and sitting MPs

Liberal Party officials are meeting privately with prospective leadership contenders in the party’s impending leadership race to field complaints that key rules for the contest favour MPs and front-runners.

AG’s spring report on feds’ F-35 fighter jets attracted ‘massive’ media attention: documents

Auditor General Michael Ferguson’s explosive report released in April on the government’s $25-billion plan to acquire 65 F-35 stealth fighter jets received ‘massive’ media coverage for two weeks after its release and was one of the top three most controversial auditor general reports in the past decade, according to newly-released documents and a ranking of audit report news coverage from the AG’s office.

MPs could vote to waive Parliamentary privilege and allow AG to release his documents

The House of Commons’ Federal Court bid to stop Auditor General Michael Ferguson from releasing correspondence between his office and House committees will likely die without further action if MPs vote to waive Parliamentary privilege protection over the records when the House resumes sitting on Monday, The Hill Times has learned.

Conservatives, NDP, Liberals distance themselves from House’s Federal Court fight with AG

'While we'll support a motion to waive Parliamentary privilege we don’t believe privilege should have been asserted in the first place,' says PMO communications director Andrew MacDougall.

Liberals say they want a competitive leadership race, ‘best thing,’ especially if Trudeau enters fray

It is too early to count any prospective contender out of the Liberal leadership race out despite Liberal MP Justin Trudeau’s skyrocketing profile and media magnetism, say heavyweight Liberal backroomers and strategists.

Liberals exempt travel costs, will allow candidates to keep high-profile House critics’ roles in newly-released leadership rules

The federal Liberal Party has exempted travel costs for leadership candidates and either a family member or even a campaign organizer from a campaign expense limit of $950,000 in the party’s leadership race that effectively got underway on Thursday.

Liberals to set fall strategy, talk Grit leadership at Montebello caucus retreat

Liberal MPs and Senators, who began three days of meetings on Tuesday in Montebello, Que., are set to be briefed by party president Mike Crawley on a range of key parameters for the party’s looming leadership contest—including a campaign expense ceiling estimated to be $500,000 and a final date for the leadership vote in the first week of April.

War of 1812 ads during Olympic television coverage cost $1.64-million

Government 'increasing Canadians’ knowledge of the War of 1812 by inviting them to learn about some of the heroes who fought for Canada and helped shape our country,' says Canadian Heritage minister spokesperson.

Opposition MPs criticize government's War of 1812 ads during Olympics, 'smacks of militaristic jingoism'

The ads are 'contrary to the spirit of the Olympics. Is it the right time to celebrate military victories over your Olympic competitors?' says NDP MP Pat Martin.

'Working premise' that Canadians don't engage in vote suppression wrong, says Wrzesnewskyj

Former Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj, who lost to Conservative MP Ted Opitz in Etobicoke Centre, Ont., by 26 votes last year is still waiting to hear about Mr. Opitz's Supreme Court appeal and is calling for changes to election legislation.

Conservatives raise more money than NDP, Grits combined, but keep an eye on number of contributors to political parties too, says expert

The Tories raised more than the Liberals and New Democrats combined in the second quarter of 2012, drawing $3.7-million in donations from 28,790 contributors, according to Elections Canada’s quarterly financial results, but a leading expert says it’s also worth keeping an eye on the number of contributors to political parties as a way to gauge their public support.

Ritz should not wait 45 days, must offer Ontario farmers unequivocal sign of support now, ‘don’t bail on your farms,’ says Grit MP Valeriote

But Canada’s Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz said the federal government is ‘absolutely’ ready to respond to the worst drought to hit Eastern Ontario in 47 years, but as farmers deal with crisp fields and stunted crops, the government will take up to 45 days to decide whether to hand out additional aid.

New Democrats look to solidify East Coast support with Newfoundland summer caucus retreat

NDP’s choice to focus on Newfoundland and Labrador a ‘tactical, surgical strike,’ says Conservative pundit Tim Powers.

Conservatives expect Calgary Centre’s hotly-contested nomination race to be more competitive than the byelection

Federal Conservatives running for the party’s nomination race in Calgary Centre expect it to be more competitive than the byelection to replace former Tory MP Lee Richardson.

May wants more Green MPs before 2015, not interested in party merger with Grits

The Green Party of Canada will hold its convention next month in British Columbia, and leader Elizabeth May says her party’s focus is on winning more seats, not merging with another centre-left party.

Doctors, scientists vow to continue protests against Prime Minister Harper government’s agenda

Medical doctors, who promise to continue the practice, have been showing up at Cabinet ministers’ press conferences to protest changes to healthcare coverage for refugees and scientists recently held a rally on the Hill to protest federal government muzzling of its scientists and cuts to research program funding, but the jury’s out on whether these public protests will influence public opinion or the government.

Grit MPs Dion, Cotler plan to challenge ‘arbitrary’ riding boundary changes, Tory MP Gourde ‘surprised’ his riding split in two

Liberal MP Stéphane Dion calls proposed riding boundary changes ‘arbitrary’ and joins fellow MP Irwin Cotler in challenging proposed changes by Quebec’s federal electoral boundaries commission, while other Quebec MPs considering challenges.

Political attack ads won’t define leaders without big airtime buys, say pundits

Recent attack ads by federal Conservatives and NDP got the attention of national media, but the parties will need to spend big money on airtime if they want to connect with voters—an unwise strategy this far out from an election, say some pundits.

Tories need to ‘protect brand of Stephen Harper,’ the ‘linchpin of Conservatives’ success,’ says Nanos

A summer of bad polls show the Tories losing support and the PM's brand taking a hit, but leading pollsters say it's way too soon to tell the lasting impact on the Harper Conservatives.


Parliamentary Calendar
Monday, April 21, 2014
ITK's 'A Taste of the Arctic' shindig on April 7, Ottawa, photographs by Cynthia Münster April 14, 2014

The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
A happy crowd at ITK's 'Taste of Arctic' at the NAC gathers for a picture. The annual event, held in Ottawa by the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, is meant showcase Inuit culture. Some 350 attend the party, including a number of MPs, Senators, Cabinet minister, lobbyists and journalists.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
National Inuit Leader and ITK President Terry Audla shows off his seal vest to Employment Minister Jason Kenney.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
Environics' Meredith Taylor and Greg MacEachern with ITK's Stephen Hendrie.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
Justice Minister Peter MacKay, his son Kian, and ITK president Terry Audla.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
ITK president Terry Audla and Abbas Rana, assistant deputy editor at The Hill Times and Party Central columnist.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
Labour Minister Kellie Leitch, ITK President Terry Audla, Laureen Harper, and local Ottawa photographer Michelle Valberg.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
ITK President Terry Audla and Labour Minister Kellie Leitch.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
A platter of smoked fish.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
Conservative MP Colin Carrie.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
Seal hash martinis.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
NDP MP Dennis Bevington, who represents the Western Arctic, N.W.T., and Chris Farris.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
ITK President and National Inuit Leader Terry Audla.
The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster
Beatrice Dear entertains the crowd.