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Stories by Samantha Wright Allen

New Indonesian envoy wants Canada to ‘expand horizons’ with ASEAN free trade deal

The 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations began exploratory trade agreements talks with Canada in 2017, but giving it more attention is a challenge, says Abdul Kadir Jailani.
While opposition MPs say the ‘naming and shaming’ approach is no longer enough, others say political accountability should remain with Parliament and the public.
'It’s a crisis situation in many, many jurisdictions and provinces,' says Liberal MP Wayne Long.
Conservative Senator Raynell Andreychuk reflects on her 26 years in the Upper Chamber, including her proudest moments and the unfinished business of ethical reform.
Parties have nominated 41 Indigenous candidates so far, closing in on the 2015 record for representation on the ballot, when an all-time high of 10 Indigenous MPs were elected.
The government isn’t showing a ‘sense of urgency,’ on climate change or international threats to Arctic sovereignty, says Liberal MP John McKay.
‘We have impact. We’re not going to be pushed to the side anymore,’ AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde told members July 24.
'I'm being made out to be the bad guy … and I'm not. I'm actually the good guy, I'm the white hat. I'm the guy who came in and saved [the MRIA] with his own money,' says Mainstreet Research president Quito Maggi.
While most pollsters say it ‘makes sense’ that recent polls conflict over a Liberal or Conservative lead, some call for better transparency and stronger editorial rules on reporting on the horse race.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business led in groups lobbying MPs as June’s 1,446 reported communications halved the total reported in May.
‘This is what we can’t accept’: A unanimous House motion in June called on the UN to investigate ‘allegations of genocide’ against the country’s minority Tamils, a term the South Asian nation categorically rejects.
‘Parties effectively get to choose the pool of people who will become Members of Parliament,' says Paul Thomas, based on Samara’s recent analysis of 6,600 candidates between 2004 and 2015.
Fostering use of Inuit languages was a key aim in creating Nunavut, but 20 years later, NTI president Aluki Kotierk says there's been a 'failure' when it comes to providing essential services to the public in Inuktut.
The outgoing U.S. ambassador was big on relationships and will be remembered for key Trump ties that proved useful during NAFTA renegotiations, says Liberal MP Wayne Easter.
Canada ‘more or less completely passive’ on China file, according to former Canadian diplomat to Beijing Charles Burton.
The numbers mean the next Parliament could be a turning point for Senate reform, says Sen. Tony Dean, but ‘there’s no scenario where it’s a slam dunk for anybody.’
Plus, Vassy Kapelos ties the knot, both Stockwell Day and Wayne Easter get another award, and Sarah McLachlan is coming to Ottawa!
The Liberals have promised to fully remove sex discrimination from the Indian Act by the election, but advocate Shelagh Day says with no public plan and no official date, 'it’s still only a promise.' 
Plus, People's Party Leader Maxime Bernier ties the knot in Florida, Graham Fraser and Lisa LaFlamme among Order of Canada honorees, and PROC pushes for parallel proposal.
It’s ‘unacceptable’ Canada has yet to finish a review, eight months in, on weapons permits to Saudi Arabia, say critics of the LAV contract.
Plus, former president George W. Bush's portraits are among the many exhibitions coming to the capital over the next few months.
An original plan for a new structure west of West Block is no longer in the works, says Senator Scott Tannas, as Senators claim space in new Wellington Street development for offices when East Block is refurbished.
‘Harassment is harassment and it must be recognized and we must tackle it,’ says Sen. Tony Dean.
Contractors hired to man Senate of Canada Building doors returned on June 10 after a Senate committee reviewed the sole-source contract signed by senior officials without their knowledge.
Stripping Conservative MP Michael Cooper of his deputy critic role would have sent a stronger message, says Tim Powers.
Canada has been without an ambassador in China for five months, during a time when relations with China have deteriorated. Now there’s reports Chinese Ambassador Lu Shaye is set to depart for a new post.
New data suggests the Senate has ‘work to do’ when it comes to hiring people with disabilities, but is on track with other equity groups.
The Conservatives have named 277 candidates, followed by 217 named to the People's Party of Canada, and 197 for the Liberal Party.
The Heads of Mission Spouses Association is planning a June 11 charity event for the Wabano Centre, helping raise funds for school supplies for 50 children.
At 517 lobbying records in the first four months of 2019, the volume of lobbyists targeting the Senate has already surpassed the annual totals common before the Justin Trudeau's government came to power.

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