Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015
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Conservatives must be better at microtargeting voters and communicating ideas to win more seats: data experts

Using the 2011 election results and data from each riding, Politrain Consulting data expert Mitch Wexler tells Manning Centre Conference attendees that Conservatives would win 189 seats, the NDP would win 108 seats, and the Liberals would win 36 seats in the 2015 federal election with 30 new seats in the House of Commons.

Ron Paul a polarizing figure, but 'conservatives not afraid of self-examination,' says Manning on former U.S. Congressman's appearance at networking event

'People either love him or hate him,' says Manning Centre communications director Olivier Ballou, who credits the 50 per cent increase in student attendance to former U.S. Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul.

Environmentalists believe humans are a 'cancer' on the planet, says Sun TV's Levant

'Some environmentalists, they believe in the environment even more than they believe sometimes in people,' Ezra Levant told the Manning Centre conference on Friday, promoting his 'ethical oil' philosophy.

All 10 provinces plan to intervene in feds’ Senate reforms questions to Supreme Court

All 10 provincial governments have served notice at the Supreme Court of Canada they intend to intervene in the federal government’s reference asking for the court’s opinion on whether Parliament has the constitutional power to unilaterally limit Senate terms, hold elections to fill vacancies or even abolish the Senate entirely.

Justin’s got a juggernaut, but he’s not taking anything for granted in federal Liberal leadership campaign, say Trudeau backers

Liberal Party news that nearly 300,000 voting age Canadians have signed up to cast ballots in the party’s April 14 leadership election, with half recruited by leadership candidate Justin Trudeau’s army of volunteers, was sobering for the other candidates on Wednesday, even though Mr. Trudeau’s supporters on Parliament Hill warned against taking anything for granted.

Trudeau has federal Liberal leadership locked up, say Grit MPs, 'people want to see a leader they believe in'

Justin Trudeau has the Liberal leadership race locked up after rounding up the lion’s share of a new class of Liberal supporters who will be eligible to vote in the leadership election without actually joining the party, Liberal MPs say.

Conservative Sen. Duffy found one-page Senator’s living expenses form unclear, had to file it annually

The Senate residency form that Conservative Senator Mike Duffy originally claimed was confusing and led to what he said was a ‘mistake’ in claiming a Prince Edward Island summer cottage as his primary residence and allowing him to claim an estimated $30,000 since September 2010 as secondary residence expenses in Ottawa, must be filed every year, according to the detailed Senate rules about housing and travel expenses.

Feds suggest uproar over Senate residency, expense claims should speed up Supreme Court’s decision on Upper Chamber reforms

The federal government has cited the political uproar over residency claims and expenses of three Conservative Senators, all appointed by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, to put pressure on the Supreme Court of Canada for a speedy decision on whether Mr. Harper’s plan to overhaul Senate terms and hold nominee elections for Senators is constitutional, according to court documents.

Supreme Court speeds up hearings into Harper government's Senate reform questions, Quebec argues against the rush

The Supreme Court of Canada is expediting hearings into the federal government’s request for an opinion on whether Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plan to unilaterally begin reforming the Senate without provincial approval is constitutional.

Candidates’ campaign meet-and-greet events new barometer for federal Liberal leadership strength

A new barometer for federal Liberal leadership contenders has emerged, aside from the sobering prospect the field of candidates faced when they saw Justin Trudeau’s daunting lead in financial donations last month.

Feds ask Supreme Court to fast-track Senate questions

The federal government has asked the Supreme Court of Canada to fast-track its request for a decisive opinion on whether Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plan to limit Senate terms and establish a nominee election system for Senate appointments without provincial consent is constitutional.

Now’s not the time to jump into ‘constitutional upheaval’ over Senate, says Trudeau

The crisis now gripping the Senate over allegations of false residency claims and the temporary expulsion of newly-Independent Quebec Senator Patrick Brazeau is no time to jump into radical changes that would spark ‘constitutional upheaval,’ Liberal MP Justin Trudeau says.

Senate puts Sen. Brazeau on leave of absence; Senators say media should focus on good work of Upper Chamber too

Newly-Independent Senator Patrick Brazeau drew a crush of television cameras and surprised even Senate staff when he turned out for a Senate vote Tuesday forcing him on a leave of absence over assault charges, and was the only Senator in the nearly full Chamber to voice opposition to the government motion intended to protect the Senate’s 'dignity' and 'public trust in Parliament.'

Most Conservative Party supporters say Canada’s Parliamentary budget officer has done a good job: Forum Research poll

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his government have been at loggerheads with Parliamentary Budget Officer Kevin Page since his appointment five years ago, but nearly half of Conservative Party voters say they believe he has done a good job, a Forum Research poll has found.

Senate under attack, Supreme Court weighs Senate’s future, PM to continue to appoint Senators

Until the Supreme Court rules on the Senate questions, Prime Minister Stephen Harper to continue to name Senators to Upper Chamber.

Lockheed Martin’s top sales guys pitch F-35s in Ottawa; Canuck test pilot says fighter jets have 50 per cent further range than CF-18s

Two of Lockheed Martin’s top salesmen for the F-35 stealth fighter jet were in Ottawa Thursday for a round of media interviews, in the wake of a recent U.S. government report about development glitches for the trouble-plagued warplane and opposition criticism about high costs, to argue the F-35 is not only the best buy for Canada but also for future protection of Canadian sovereignty in the Arctic.

Supreme Court’s decision on Senate's future could pit Ottawa against Atlantic Canada, says expert

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s decision to ask the Supreme Court of Canada whether his government has the constitutional authority to unilaterally change the way Senators are selected, or to abolish the Senate with the support of at least seven provinces, will pit Ottawa against the Atlantic provinces and divide the country region against region, says a leading political scientist in Atlantic Canada.

Page’s high profile, high transparency, scaring some backbenchers off: Tory MP

But both government and opposition MPs say the Parliamentary Budget Office is invaluable.

Liberals opt for individual TV interviews in Winnipeg, not a televised leadership debate, say it's 'to get know' candidates

When the nine Liberal leadership candidates meet face-to-face for the second debate in the contest for the party’s helm, it won’t be face to face. Technically, it won’t even be a debate.

PCO says use of its letterhead touting feds' more tough-on-crime bills in works an error by news wire service, now corrected

The Privy Council Office says a mistake by the news wire service it uses to disseminate government news releases led to the distribution of a politically-themed news release on Monday from Government House Leader Peter Van Loan under the letterhead of the Privy Council Office, a branch intended to serve Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Cabinet in a non-partisan way.


Parliamentary Calendar
Saturday, February 28, 2015
Hill media, staffers send off PMO's Jason MacDonald at the Métropolitain Brasserie's bar Feb. 20, 2015

The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
Bloomberg's Theo Argitis and PMO chief of staff Ray Novak.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
The PMO's outgoing Director of Communications Jason MacDonald.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
PMO executive assistant Stephen Staley, PMO special assistant Myles Atwood, and Tory Party national campaign manager Jenni Byrne.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
PMO deputy chief of staff Howard Anglin and Postmedia's Stephen Maher.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
The Ottawa Citizen's Jason Fekete with the man of the hour, Jason MacDonald.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
The Toronto Star's Tonda MacCharles.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
CBC's Chris Hall and Melissa Lantsman, Finance Minister Joe Oliver's director of communications.
The Hill Times Photograph by Jake Wright
Michael White, Finance Minister Joe Oliver's policy director.