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Chief of staff to the prime minister Katie Telford, pictured May 7, 2021, says she 'was troubled' that the probe couldn't move forward without more information. Screen capture via ParlVu

Top PMO aide got assurances ‘no one’s safety was at risk’ as probe into Vance allegation hit impasse

News|By Beatrice Paez
Katie Telford repeatedly deflected questions around whether she ‘deliberately withheld’ information from the prime minister.

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.

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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.
Chief of staff to the prime minister Katie Telford, pictured May 7, 2021, says she 'was troubled' that the probe couldn't move forward without more information. Screen capture via ParlVu

Top PMO aide got assurances ‘no one’s safety was at risk’ as probe into Vance allegation hit impasse

News|By Beatrice Paez
Katie Telford repeatedly deflected questions around whether she ‘deliberately withheld’ information from the prime minister.

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Europe Day 2021

Delegation of the European Union to Canada

So, Ontario, how’s electing unqualified, anti-government populists working out for you?

Opinion|By Les Whittington
Ford cannot get past the anti-worker mentality born of his years as a rich, entitled business owner with little use for notions of government-promoted good.

Are apologies enough when a political leader refuses to represent some Canadians?

Opinion|By Rose LeMay
When a political leader refuses to represent all Canadians in her or his riding, what should be the consequence?

Paid sick leave and the empathy gap

Opinion|By Susan Riley
If politicians are unable to relate to the struggles of people they don’t often meet, maybe they’ll realize that paying sick people to stay home ultimately benefits the bottom line.

Drug use isn’t an issue ‘we can arrest ourselves out of,’ says Senator Boniface

News|By Alice Chen
Senator Gwen Boniface’s bill proposes the formation of a national health-centred strategy and the decriminalization of possession to address drug use, an approach experts support.

With great financial power comes great responsibility

Corporate social responsibility must be enforced by law, and it must be enforced through the ethical investment of our pension funds.

Amid COVID-19, grieving support bill ‘really hit home’ for MPs, says Jeneroux

News|By Alice Chen
'It makes sense that we all get together and we show the country what Canada really is, and it’s a compassionate country,' says Conservative MP Matt Jeneroux, who introduced Bill C-220.

Canada has limited options to pressure Iran to be transparent over downing of PS752, says last diplomat in Tehran

News|By Neil Moss
The Canadian government has criticized Iran for not providing transparency over what led to the shooting down of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 on Jan. 8, 2020.

Changes to Radio Canada International come at expense to core mandate, say supporters

News|By Neil Moss
'Radio Canada International has just one mandate and that is to explain Canada to the world,' says former host Wojtek Gwiazda.

What’s at stake in denying consequences of genocide

Opinion|By Raffi Sarkissian
Denial by Turkey and its agents is no longer just another side of a coin or an opinion, but rather hate speech directed to debilitate the victimized group further. 

New quarantine measures won’t affect hotel industry’s bottom line, but may create more stress, say stakeholders

News|By Alice Chen
'I don’t really see this as a benefit to hotels because of the incredible applications in logistics that would have to occur,' says Conservative transport critic Stephanie Kusie.

Former innovation minister Bains was most-lobbied minister in 2020

Mr. Bains, who was lobbied 214 times in 2020, took the top spot from the 2019 leader, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau.

Finance Committee chair Easter top non-cabinet-MP target for lobbyists in 2020

Non-cabinet MPs were lobbied nearly 10,000 times in 2020.

Former senator Sinclair will soon join Queen’s University as chancellor

Feature|By Alice Chen
Plus, Isabelle Hudon is set to become the next chief executive officer of the Business Development Bank of Canada and former senator Murray Sinclair has another new gig.

David Hurl named policy director to Innovation Minister Champagne

Feature|By Laura Ryckewaert
Plus, Janick Cormier has left the national revenue minister’s office, and Kendra Wilcox is now director of operations to Women and Gender Equality Minister Maryam Monsef.

John Brodhead, Cyndi Jenkins among recent PMO additions

Feature|By Laura Ryckewaert
With Cyndi Jenkins now acting as executive director of operations in the PMO, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino has made Mike Jones his acting chief of staff.

Lead, don’t lecture: Greens’ Paul takes aim at Ottawa’s COVAX supply as PM readies speech for concert

Feature|By Palak Mangat
Plus, a reporter who helped highlight the treatment of racialized reporters in what is a predominantly white industry is coming to Ottawa, and a former Liberal aide is headed to Crestview Strategy.

Conservative MP Jansen under fire for comments on LGBTQ2 community

Feature|By Alice Chen
Plus, the 2020 shortlist for the Donner Prize has been announced, and The Toronto Star's Ottawa bureau welcomes two new reporters.

Natural Resources Minister O’Regan adds policy adviser to team

Feature|By Laura Ryckewaert
Plus, Ana Krstanovic recently left Liberal Whip Mark Holland’s office, and the Hill at large, and is now a senior consultant with Hill + Knowlton Strategies.

Experts question role of data commissioner as feds finally earmark funds

'How is that going to fit with the Competition Bureau and privacy commissioner, because those two agencies have really been leading the charge when it comes to data issues?' asks Ottawa U Prof. Teresa Scassa.

With an ambitious domestic policy budget, Liberals leave little for foreign affairs

News|By Neil Moss
'The contrast is jarring between huge ambition at home and no ambition abroad,' says former Canadian diplomat Ben Rowswell on the Liberals' new budget.

Scratching the surface: more needed to address northern housing, say MPs, experts

News|By Alice Chen
'The budget is a disappointment for those who hoped we could finally address the deep core housing needs facing Canada’s urban and rural Indigenous peoples,' says Canada Housing and Renewal Association's Jeff Morrison.

Mixed reviews on budget supports for hard-hit tourism industry, amid calls for a national recovery strategy

News|By Alice Chen
'We’re going to see a generation of businesses go out of business,' without more supports for the tourism sector, says NDP MP Gord Johns.

A just recovery from COVID-19 must include climate justice

Decision-makers have promised climate action, reconciliation, and justice. We call on them to deliver.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pictured on March 16, 2016, announcing Canada's bid for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council. The ultimately unsuccessful campaign for the seat had all the hallmarks of a partisan campaign, something that Adam Chapnick says is detrimental to Canada's success on the UNSC. Prime Minister's Office photo courtesy of Adam Scotti

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.
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.
Feature|Mike Lapointe
Patterns of interference, intimidation, and harassment of individual Canadians by the Chinese Communist Party ‘demand a response’ from the Canadian government, says veteran journalist Jonathan Manthorpe in his 2019 book.
Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, pictured Sept. 14, 2020, arriving for last week's cabinet retreat in Ottawa before Parliament resumes on Sept. 23. Economic and fiscal plans must be tied to economic scenarios with unmeasurable probabilities. Finance ministers around the world will be under pressure to change the way they prepare budgets, writes Kevin Page. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

COVID-19: economic impacts and prospects

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.
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.
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: Trudeau’s chief of staff Katie Telford to testify before Defence Committee

Plus, former cabinet minister Amarjeet Sohi, is expected to announce his candidacy for Edmonton mayor soon. Outgoing mayor Don Iveson's tenure wraps up in October.
Having a stable and competitive business environment in which the health and biosciences sector can innovate is essential to ensure that future major outbreaks are effectively and efficiently contained.
Thanks to its robust health system, rigorous testing strategies, information transparency, and public-private partnerships, Taiwan’s response to COVID-19 has been one of the world’s success stories.
News|Neil Moss
Global Affairs has yet to finalize its position on the waiver six months after it was first introduced by South Africa and India.
The solution here isn’t simply the province tweaking the way vaccines are allocated, the solution is getting enough vaccines so that all groups can be vaccinated equitably.
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The Top 100 Most Influential 2021

Pandemic edition: Top 100 most influential people to watch in 2021

ANNUAL FEATURE|By Beatrice Paez, Mike Lapointe, Samantha Wright Allen, Laura Ryckewaert, Palak Mangat
The Hot Room Podcast

How will C-10 actually affect social media and broadcasting in Canada?

Listen and subscribe to our podcast from your mobile device:
Via Apple Podcasts | Via Spotify | Via Stitcher | Via Google Podcasts

Politics This Morning

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If nuclear waste is such a problematic material as to ban its imports from other countries, isn’t it time to stop its production altogether?
Opinion|Richard Audas
For those aged 85 and above Canada’s situation is deteriorating with its excess death rate for Canada at 18.0 per cent, dramatically higher than the other developed countries in our comparison.
Opinion|Erica Ifill
Those in power continue to weaponize free speech for their own ends that have nothing to do with preserving the rights and freedoms of all Canadians. Don’t be fooled. Stay woke.
Opinion|Scott Taylor
That the military brass chose to stand behind the perpetrator and not support the victim in this case is troubling.
Opinion|Tim Powers
In this month of mental health awareness, I hope we can say that some steps were made to get us back to a healthier place.
Is the CRTC prepared to grant the CBC the hands-off treatment its president is asking for when the management team has made so many guarantees?
Feature|Brodie Ramin

Ramin unpacks opioid crisis response in The Age of Fentanyl

The following is an excerpt from Brodie Ramin’s Donner-nominated book The Age of Fentanyl: Ending the Opioid Epidemic.
Feature|Joseph Heath

Heath digs deep into the institution of the permanent civil service in The Machinery of Government

The following is an excerpt from Joseph Heath's Donner-nominated book, The Machinery of Government: Public Administration and the Liberal State. 

New press secretary on board in Defence Minister Sajjan’s office

Floriane Bonneville, who had been press secretary to the defence minister since January 2020, is now a communications adviser to Economic Development Minister Mélanie Joly.

Revenue Minister Lebouthillier hires new policy director, Jessica Morrison

Plus, Sadie Ghosn has bade Employment, Workforce Development, and Disability Inclusion Minister Carla Qualtrough’s team farewell.
Feature|Palak Mangat

Doctor tweets ‘immunized the coolest MP in our family practice’: Jagmeet Singh gets his AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

Plus, politicos and reporters gave us a sneak peak of their budget day fashion, and opposition lobby staffers pay homage to a local Indian restaurant.

New language-learning app named after late Liberal bilingualism champion

Plus, Conservatives are given a free vote on sex-selective abortion act and MP McLeod presents a private member’s bill on government accountability.

Federal cybersecurity workers heading for strike votes following bargaining impasse

With the two sides having been at the bargaining table for almost two years following the expiry of the most recent collective agreement, strike votes are scheduled to run from Feb. 11 to 24.

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.'

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.
Feature|Neil Moss

New consul in Nunavut even more essential without ability to travel to the North, says Danish envoy

'It's important for us to have boots on the ground,' says Danish Ambassador Hanne Fugl Eskjær of the appointment of Navarana Beveridge as Denmark's honorary consul in Iqaluit.
Feature|Neil Moss

Protocol became ‘even more important’ in a world of virtual diplomacy, says Canada’s chief

Stewart Wheeler says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's virtual meeting with new U.S. President Joe Biden was a way to use technology to start building a relationship with the new administration.

Annamie Paul talks growing the Greens on May 6

Wednesday, May 5th, 2021
Green Party Leader Annamie Paul will speak with Toronto Star columnist Martin Regg Cohn on how to grow the Greens in a tough political environment in a webinar hosted by Ryerson University on Thursday, May 6. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pictured April 27, 2021, makes his way to the Sir John A. Macdonald Building for a pandemic briefing, where he announced Canada is sending $10-million to help India, which is struggling to respond to the pandemic as new infections continue their steep climb. The money will be sent to the Canadian Red Cross' counterpart so it can 'everything from ambulance services to buying more PPE locally.'
The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade
The Hill Times file photograph by Jake Wright
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