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Canadians would be much better served by a cooperative, coordinated, and sustained pandemic response

By Joe Jordan      

If the opposition parties support a non-confidence motion in the current government, over maybe a budget or something, and let’s say the chief electoral officer tells Parliament that a federal election cannot be safely held, then, assuming we find one quickly, the governor general will really have only one option: welcome to the party, Prime Minister Erin O’Toole.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pictured Jan. 26, 2021, holding that day's press conference on the COVID-19 situation outside the Rideau Cottage in Ottawa. At the federal level, we have an opposition that jumps between minimizing the pandemic, and ridiculing prevention measures, to holding the government’s feet to the fire on vaccines and rollout strategies. Provincially, we have a number of premiers that got up Christmas morning and unwrapped a lovely 'incompetent federal vaccine acquisition' narrative that served to completely eclipse the fact that they could not have distributed any more vaccines anyway because, seriously, who could have seen the need for a rollout strategy coming, writes Joe Jordan.

OTTAWA—About 40 years ago, I found myself at the Calgary Stampede and spent a couple of hard-earned, oil-patch dollars at a carnival booth that used a machine to examine handwriting and graph a line against a number of personal attributes. When the machine was graphing my line above “procrastinate” it went so high that it flipped off the edge of the page and the ink-filled needle could not get back on the card to finish the analysis. I was left with an unintended piece of modern art and no idea how I ranked on the last six personality traits.

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Feds should tout vaccine costs as ‘leverage’ in future talks with premiers, says expert

News|By Palak Mangat
While a ‘missed opportunity’ in the earlier days of the pandemic, some observers worry tying strings to provincial and territorial access to potentially life-saving vaccines could be seen as ‘unethical.’

Election speculation, party conventions likely boosted fundraising haul, say strategists

News|By Beatrice Paez
With so much of everyday life migrating online due to the pandemic, says Michael Edwards of Sussex Strategy, the potential for engaging political supporters who weren’t initially comfortable doing transactions has grown.

Former cabinet minister Sohi to officially launch Edmonton mayoral bid soon, sources say

Prof. Duane Bratt says Amarjeet Sohi would be the ‘front-runner’ in the mayoral election, where at least six candidates have officially joined the race to succeed Don Iveson.

Liberal MPs in Toronto’s hot spots ramp up outreach to support mass immunization, address hesitancy

The province should have targeted vaccines to hot-spot neighbourhoods earlier, before Toronto was ‘on fire’ with COVID cases, says Liberal MP Judy Sgro.

Health Canada gives green light to administer Pfizer vaccine to those aged 12-15

News|By Palak Mangat
Officials were unable to immediately say how the approval will impact the country’s overall herd immunity goal, which has been described as a moving target by experts as more vaccines come online.

Committee jurisdiction unresolved as MPs await study on privacy bill

Conservatives say sending the bill to the Ethics Committee is an attempt to distract the committee from its ongoing work on the WE Charity controversy, while Liberals say Ethics is the natural spot for a privacy bill.

What’s up PROC? Committee filibuster over prorogation study passes 40-hour mark

‘I don’t need to hear from Chrystia Freeland … about their most recent budget for 90 minutes in order to understand the decision about prorogation,’ says NDP MP Daniel Blaikie of a Liberal-suggested compromise.

Constitutional challenge to sex work laws ‘succeeded before’ and will succeed again, says advocacy group

News|By Alice Chen
The current set of laws prohibit working together as well as safely advertising, puts sex workers at undue risk and potentially violates their charter rights.

A national strategy on transgender health care is needed, advocates and experts say

News|By Alice Chen
'There are clear, glaring gaps in coverage and standards for transgender health care in Canada,' says Conservative health critic Michelle Rempel Garner.
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