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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference after the Liberal cabinet retreat Ottawa on Sept. 16, 2020. Mr. Trudeau's Throne Speech said action on climate change will be a 'cornerstone' of Canada's economic recovery. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Throne Speech’s climate promises draws mixed reviews, with NDP saying it’s a rehash of old pledges

News|By Aidan Chamandy 6:04 PM ET
The Throne Speech promised action on climate change like the country has never seen before, but some experts and politicians are skeptical the Liberal government can deliver.

Former PM Turner was a ‘living legend,’ ‘a great defender of Parliament,’ say politicos

News|By Palak Mangat 4:57 PM ET
While the conditions for Liberal longevity might not have been ripe, Liberal strategist Charles Bird says late former prime minister John Turner came to the leadership when 'he was already something of a living legend.'

Foreign policy focus in new session should be on China, U.S., and human rights, say Parliamentarians

News|By Neil Moss
'The No. 1 [foreign policy] priority is our relationship with the United States,' says Independent Senator Peter Boehm as the U.S. presidential election quickly approaches.

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Political parties reach last-minute deal to temporarily change House rules for hybrid Commons, electronic voting

The rule changes includes a sunset clause, with the terms expiring Dec. 11.

‘Whatever it takes’: Trudeau says austerity not an option in the face of staggering job losses, health crisis 

News|By Beatrice Paez
The speech did not promise a full-fledged budget, but said an update to the feds’ COVID-19 Economic Response plan would be coming this fall.

‘I wrote this memoir from the heart’: former Supreme Court chief justice wins Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for memoir, Truth Be Told, a ‘unique and tantalizing glimpse’ into top court  

News|By Palak Mangat
'Writing this book has brought me close to Canadians and the wonder of our national diversity. This prize is the icing on the amazing cake that has been my life': former Supreme Court chief justice Beverley McLachlin.

Presidential election could change course on unilateral tariff use, but Canada-U.S. trade tensions will remain: experts

News|By Neil Moss
If Joe Biden wins the U.S. presidency, he will be constrained in the use of unilateral tariffs, say experts, while Donald Trump's re-election may leave Canada once again targeted by national security tariffs.

COVID-19 containment, economic recovery expected to drive fall lobbying

Lobbyists will also be keeping an eye on progress on the government's backlog of big-ticket legislation and regulatory reforms this session.

Parties close to agreement on voting plan, Parliament return, but committees prove sticking point, says Bloc MP

The Standing Orders have to be amended to allow MPs to vote remotely, and according to Bloc deputy House leader Christine Normandin, there’s agreement among parties for those changes to be made temporary.

They’re back: 25 Members of Parliament to watch this session

With talk of a possible snap election, a continuing pandemic, and a minority Parliament to boot, the second session of the 43rd Parliament should be an interesting one.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference after the Liberal cabinet retreat Ottawa on Sept. 16, 2020. Mr. Trudeau's Throne Speech said action on climate change will be a 'cornerstone' of Canada's economic recovery. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Throne Speech’s climate promises draws mixed reviews, with NDP saying it’s a rehash of old pledges

News|By Aidan Chamandy 6:04 PM ET
The Throne Speech promised action on climate change like the country has never seen before, but some experts and politicians are skeptical the Liberal government can deliver.

Trumpism could outlast Trump 

Opinion|By Gerry Nicholls
My sense is, it’s going to be a tight race. So, get ready to batten the hatches, things south of the border will likely get mighty interesting. 

At last, a break from the tyranny of supply-siders

Opinion|By Les Whittington
Bringing new ideas about creating a better Canada to life will require time and an ongoing, historic commitment once the pandemic recedes.

Throne Speech writers must reflect Indigenous views

Opinion|By Rose LeMay
Indigenous rage will not fade away. With more allies than ever before, politicians can't assume it won't make the evening news anymore.

Ottawa mayor calls on Trudeau to send cash to people with disabilities, pass Bill C-17

'To date, there have not been direct attempts by the federal government to address the concerns of many Canadians with disabilities who have few alternatives,' Mayor Jim Watson wrote in the July 14 letter.

Liberals preparing legislation to extend deadlines for courts, security reviews and more amid pandemic

The law could give Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains more time to give notice of a national security review to a foreign company trying to take over a Canadian business.

Senate oversight committees aim to start meeting this week

The Senate’s Finance and Social Affairs committees are preparing to start their studies of the government’s COVID-19 relief effort.

International COVID-19 recovery efforts will be lessened unless all nations are included

Without Taiwan’s meaningful inclusion in the UN system, the efforts of the UN will be hampered and the ability of countries like Canada to pursue an ambitious international agenda will be reduced.

Boris Johnson’s cunning plan

Opinion|By Gwynne Dyer
We are asked to believe that Boris Johnson has belatedly realized there will be a crisis in the Irish Sea next January, and decided to push through a highly controversial law right now.

Canada can’t hide behind NATO in refusal to sign treaty on nuclear weapons prohibition

Opinion|By Douglas Roche
Justin Trudeau has not yet learned how NATO contravenes the basic idea of nuclear disarmament, for he called the negotiations that led to the adoption of the Prohibition Treaty 'useless.'

June lobbying a success with wage subsidy extension, groups say

With 2,002 recorded communications, June saw a dip in lobbying compared to each of the four previous months of 2020, but it was busier than the last sitting month in 2019.

Lobby groups push feds to pivot to recovery phase, say more cash needed for key sectors

In May organizations logged 1,998 lobbying reports, with economic development, health, and industry among the most discussed matters.

‘We’re all hurting’: culture and sports groups say they need added funds, emergency support extended

The government says it’s developing a new portal in ‘record time’ to help fund arts, culture, and sport organizations, while opposition MPs say a plan for the sector has been too slow.

PMO shuffles public service, with new PHAC president named

Feature|By Neil Moss
Plus, past Grit PM John Turner has died at 91, and CBC parliamentary bureau chief Rob Russo is leaving the newsroom after seven years.

O’Toole gets his OLO in shape, names Bélanger as his deputy chief

Feature|By Laura Ryckewaert
Veteran Conservative staffer Martin Bélanger will be working closely with new leader Erin O’Toole’s chief of staff, Tausha Michaud.

Former federal NDP MPs Rankin, Cullen eye return to politics, seek to run for B.C. party

Feature|By Palak Mangat
Plus, former Harper-era cabinet minister Ted Menzies is being scooped up by Hill+Knowlton Strategies for his agriculture and agri-food expertise.

Stand and deliver: Godbout does a deep dive on party discipline and the influence of government in Parliament

Feature|By Alex Marland
Lost on Division features 10 chapters that draw on a dataset of how more than 5,100 MPs and Senators voted in over 13,000 roll call votes between 1867 and 2015, as well as their biographical data.

Aline Chrétien, former PM’s ‘closest confidante,’ remembered as ‘class act’ by politicos, Hillites

Feature|By Palak Mangat
Plus, as Parliament readies to return, new Conservative Whip Blake Richards recently likened the remote voting system being considered by the House of Commons to swiping on Tinder.

‘Those are his pyjamas’: O’Toole opts for suit and tie to catch thrilling Raptors playoff game

Feature|By Palak Mangat
Plus, NDP MP Niki Ashton and longtime party staffer George Soule celebrate their birthdays by appealing to voters and donors.
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Canada needs to step up support for international tropical conservation

Opinion|By Molly Bartlett
The tropics are key to regulating climate, supplying and filtering water, and providing pollinators for the world’s food crops. 

Black student groups lead the charge as StatsCan data gives deep dive on racism in education

Recent Statistics Canada findings indicate socio-economic factors alone can't account for the disparities in educational outcomes between Black Canadians and the rest of the population.

Indigenous visions for Canadian post-secondary institutions: past, present, and future

Opinion|By Shelly Johnson
The relationship between Indigenous peoples and Canadian post-secondary institutions remains wary, despite Canada’s apologies and financial settlements for its Indian Residential School or Sixties Scoop projects.

Doubling down on research during the COVID-19 pandemic

Research leads to discoveries; discoveries lead to new products and services; and new products create jobs and protect the health of Canadians.

University education and Black youth

Opinion|By Carl James
Despite the growing racial diversity of today’s student population and universities’ claims of being inclusive, the whiteness and the colonial structure of the system remains.
Former Conservative MP Lisa Raitt and former NDP MP Megan Leslie, pictured delivering a legendary song and dance number at the 2013 event. This year’s ceremony will be held online. The Hill Times file photograph

Politics & the Pen goes virtual for 20th anniversary of Shaughnessy Cohen Prize

The Politics & the Pen event is a night 'to support free expression, deep scholarship, and gifted writers wrestling with historic and contemporary issues that shape our ever-changing and unfinished country.' This year, it's going virtual.
The first definitive history of Canada's time on the UN Security Council is a must read for anyone interested in Canadian foreign policy.
Harold Johnson’s book Peace and Good Order is among five shortlisted books for this year's Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing.
Feature|Beatrice Paez
'I kind of just go ahead and do what I feel I should do, and get myself into situations where I’m thinking, "Oh, everybody here knows more than I do. But anyway, here goes." It served me very well,' says former Supreme Court chief justice Beverley McLachlin.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pictured arriving on Aug. 18, 2020, the day he prorogued Parliament and officially announced his new finance minister, Chrystia Freeland. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Fabulous 50: most influential figures to watch in federal politics this fall

Feature|Beatrice Paez, Neil Moss, Mike Lapointe, Samantha Wright Allen, and Abbas Rana
In what was supposed to be a period in which backbenchers and the opposition could wield more influence over the political debate, power and influence is arguably even more concentrated among a narrow cast of mostly familiar figures.
Opinion|Kevin Page
There are some potential game changers for outcomes—a vaccine; and a resurgence in international leadership and cooperation. Closer to home, we need a Canadian economic recovery plan that will boost confidence in the future with strategic and measured investments in long-term challenges and adjustment support for Canadians and businesses left behind by the coronavirus.
If we want to really honour Shannen Koostachin and the many children like her—we need to speak up, keep talking until government takes immediate action to end the inequality. If they don’t—vote them out because kids like Shannen are worth the money. The time for patience is over.
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Politics This Morning: Second wave is here, says Trudeau, appealing to Canadians to avoid parties

Plus, a state funeral for the late former prime minister John Turner is set for Oct. 6. The Trudeau government promises to extend the wage subsidy program through to the next summer, vowing to spend 'whatever it takes' to mitigate the health and economic crisis.

Opinion 4:24 PM ET
Without status, many migrants are left without rights.
Opinion|Eva Kittay
When our own lives are not in crisis, we fail to see how our neglect, self-absorption, disdain for others weakens the structure as a whole. 
Health Minister Patty Hajdu says 'no one at the political level knew' the network's international focus had been 'sidelined,' calling it 'an administration decision.'
Political strategists say they expect a mini-budget or beefed-up economic statement before year’s end, something former PBO Kevin Page says ‘can’t wait’ until next spring.

The Hot Room Podcast

Dissecting the Throne Speech with McGill's Daniel Béland

PODCASTS|By THE HILL TIMES STAFF
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Opinion|Tim Powers
While Atlantic Canada has done a good job of managing COVID-19 counts, it is breathtakingly short-sighted to assume that the retention of the 'bubble' for a sustained period is effective policy.
Opinion|Scott Taylor
Lieutenant General-Wayne Eyre's recent message to the CAF was clear: 'If you have those types of beliefs—get out. We don’t want you.'
The Canadian comedy that just swept the Emmys can’t possibly stop now. Here’s a suggestion.
Opinion|Bruce Carson
It is arguable that in the calculation as to whether to go or not, there is more pressure on Trudeau to get it right than falls on the shoulders of the other three leaders.
In the intervening years, it has become abundantly clear that public confidence in the field of radioactive waste management cannot be secured unless there is a scrupulous avoidance of conflict of interest.
Opinion|Joe Jordan
At the risk of ruining my already blemished record, I really don’t think we are headed for an election this fall. There does not seem to be a critical mass of support.

The definitive history of Canada’s role on the United Nations Security Council

The first definitive history of Canada's time on the UN Security Council is a must read for anyone interested in Canadian foreign policy.

‘Tinkering’ won’t fix legal system, communities need Indigenous jurisdiction, says former lawyer in new book

Harold Johnson’s book Peace and Good Order is among five shortlisted books for this year's Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing.

Communications team changes for Joly, Murray has a new chief

Plus, Veterans Affairs Minister Lawrence MacAulay recently promoted Cameron McNeill to press secretary, among a number of other recent political staffing moves.

Patel joins PMO, Minister Monsef names new operations director

Plus, press secretary Maéva Proteau recently left the finance minister’s office to take over as director of communications to Economic Development Minister Mélanie Joly.
Feature|Neil Moss

Green Party leadership candidates to debate Canada’s role in the world

Plus, John Ivison and Mike Moffatt place a wager on the future public debt interest rate, and former Tory MP David Anderson joins a religious freedom think tank as an adviser.
Feature|Palak Mangat

A tale of two Erins: Colorado radio host talks shop with new Conservative leader

Plus, late Liberal MP Ralph Ferguson is remembered by Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley as 'ahead of his time on conservation, the environment and renewable energy.'

As union members face COVID-19 pandemic ‘head on,’ PSAC calls for feds to return to bargaining table

Treasury Board spokesperson Martin Potvin says the government's goal is to take 'constructive steps to keep meeting and to prepare for negotiations when they resume.'

‘Critical situation’ in prisons as health-care workers threaten to walk over lack of protective equipment

'The Correctional Service of Canada continues to take a number of preventative measures to restrict the spread of COVID-19 in federal institutions,' according to the office of Public Safety Minister Bill Blair.

No more Hill parties, after coronavirus pandemic forces Parliament Hill to shut down

'Politics and the Pen is probably the exact opposite of social distancing. We cram so many people into the ballroom that you can barely keep one to two inches away,' says Jim Armour.  

Sorbara makes ’em howl at the Métropolitain

Pat Sorbara's new book, Let 'em Howl, offers lessons learned over a more than four-decade career in federal and provincial politics as a high-ranking Liberal backroomer.

Vietnamese envoy arrives on repatriation flight, one of many firsts for new cohort of ‘Zoom diplomats’

‘We are Zoom diplomats now,’ says Pham Cao Phong, who, with the South Korean envoy, was the first ambassador in Canada to present their credentials to the Governor General virtually.

South Korean scholar-turned-diplomat sees posting as front-row seat to ‘virtual diplomacy era’

Chang Keung Ryong, a former political science and foreign policy professor, says he’d like to write a book about the gap between theory and practice in diplomacy.

Back in business: Parliament kicks off a new session

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2020
NDP MP Charlie Angus held an animated press conference on Sept. 21 on the ethics commissioner's recent ruling that former ambassador David MacNaughton violated the Conflict of Interest Act in his dealings with government for Palantir. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, whose party's support for the Throne Speech, is likely to pivotal to the survival of the government, outlined two key demands: paid sick leave and a guarantee that Canada Emergency Response Benefit, which is expiring this week, would be extended. He placed less emphasis on the promises laid out in the speech itself, saying the party’s support hinges on the government’s ability to legislate those two demands.
The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

The Hill Times file photograph
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