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Politics This Morning: get ready for a cheesy long weekend

By Kristen Shane      
Vancouver Centre Liberal MP Hedy Fry, far right, plays around with her team members who have been cutting, measuring, and duct-taping up a storm this week to create their costumes for the Vancouver Pride Parade on Aug. 6. Photograph courtesy of Hedy Fry's Twitter
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Happy Friday! (And on the last work day before a long weekend, who wouldn’t be?)

Here’s what’s happening today:

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is set to visit the St-Albert Cheese Factory at 1 p.m. EST, just a hop, skip, and a jump away from Parliament Hill (okay, well, 45 minutes east). He’ll be in the heart of eastern Ontario dairy country, so perhaps supply management (a possible sticky issue in upcoming NAFTA talks) will be on the menu, though the visit will be a photo opportunity only with no Q&A with reporters scheduled. Let’s hope the PM udderly enjoys those delicious cheese curds.

Afterwards, he’ll head down the road to the 70th Annual Glengarry Highland Games in Maxville, Ont. for another photo-op at 2 p.m.

He’ll have to high-tail it out of there to get to the airport, though, if he wants to make it to a Liberal Party summer social for top donors in Victoria, B.C. He’s scheduled to be the guest of honour at the event, which runs from 7 to 9 p.m. local time. The Liberal Party is facilitating media coverage as part of its new “open fundraising” rules, and will post a list of attendees within 45 days on its website.

In case you’re wondering what Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is up to, he’s letting you know he really likes the Simpsons and has no shame in telling the odd Dad joke. Yes, the new Tory leader, with his get-to-know-you summer agenda to connect with Canadians, is showing his softer side via a Facebook post on “a few things people might not know about me.”

Meanwhile, Labour Minister Patty Hajdu is in Thunder Bay, Ont. at the closing ceremonies of Teach for Canada’s Summer Enrichment Program where she’ll highlight the government’s “support for young Canadians at the start of their careers” with a photo-op and Q&A with reporters starting at 5:30 p.m.

Fun fact: the co-founder of Teach for Canada is Adam Goldenberg, a lawyer with a Yale law degree and a former speechwriter for Michael Ignatieff when he was Liberal leader. He’s still on the group’s board, according to its website. The non-profit recruits, trains, and supports teachers to work in northern First Nations communities.

Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay is in his home province of Prince Edward Island to announce federal support for the province’s agricultural sector at his department’s Harrington Research Farm at noon (local time).

In case you missed it:

Donald Trump’s pick for U.S. ambassador to Canada, Kentucky Republican donor Kelly Knight Craft, is one step closer to packing up for her soon-to-be-new Ottawa home, Lornado. The U.S. Senate confirmed her appointment Thursday afternoon. That could mean she’ll present her credentials to the governor general and officially start the job in time for the first round of NAFTA renegotiations to begin between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico on Aug. 16.

Looking to this weekend:

Happy birthday Saturday to Ontario Senator Gwen Boniface of the Independent Senators Group, who turns 62.

On Sunday, Liberal MP Hedy Fry, who represents Vancouver Centre, B.C., turns 76.

She’ll be doubly celebrating, as the Vancouver Pride Parade is that day. Ms. Fry is known for dressing to the nines for the annual do, strutting in high heels and silver face paint as the Roman goddess of justice in 2010, and donning a strapless green get-up and long, blonde, curly wig as a mermaid in 2012.

Photos on Ms. Fry’s Twitter account this week show her with a tape measure around her neck, scissors in hand, crafting this year’s fabulous creation.

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May is set to march in the colourful parade as well.

If you’re in Ottawa this weekend, catch the first night of the Sound of Light Fireworks, which runs every Wednesday and Saturday night from Aug. 5 to 19. The pyrotechnics display is put on from a barge in the Ottawa River just below Parliament Hill. Ontario’s performance starts Saturday at 9:15 p.m.

Quick programming note:

Politics This Morning is taking the long weekend off. You’ll get your regular Monday morning headlines with the latest political news, but the next time you’ll get this briefing will be Tuesday.

Have a great long weekend (well, in some provinces at least).

The Hill Times

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