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Stories by Samantha Wright Allen

Ex-MP Mike Wallace snags Japanese honour

Nunavut artist Bart Hanna was selected to create a sculpture for Centre Block and Anna Desmarais joins iPolitics to cover immigration, Indigenous Affairs, the environment, and foreign affairs.
They say the Lobbying Act must change so that the onus to report isn’t only on the lobbyist, but also the government, to improve accountability.
Fearing more Canadian tariffs against other countries, some steel users are hiring lobbyists for the first time.
Several agencies say they are hiring more analysts and adopting innovative approaches to address the long delays, and the complaints that come with them.
Critics say Canada’s 2017 military export report highlights an ongoing loophole that leaves an estimated half of total exports—those headed to the U.S.—not tracked or controlled.
In the age of echo chambers and media fragmentation, strategists discuss how the new campaign playbook needs to adapt to reach voters.
For some, their involvement represents a public about-face to their stance on the drug while holding office.
‘The challenge is for people to actually act like grown-ups, work behind the scenes,’ says former Conservative House leader Jay Hill.
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While some say there's still time ahead of the 2020 vote, many question whether there's political will to get the job done.
If the $7-billion central vote passes with the main estimates on Thursday, former PBO Kevin Page says it represents ‘a new low’ for Parliament's financial oversight system.
The All-Party Democracy Caucus is surveying MPs to see where there’s momentum for change in the wake of a Samara report that found ex-MPs disillusioned by their lack of independence.
Grit MPs and observers say Canada should keep up its charm offensive because it’s working on U.S. policy-makers despite the president’s actions.
Kevin O’Leary tops both the Tory and NDP candidates, with about $390,000 outstanding. He says raising funds for failed candidates is ‘nearly impossible’ due to 'outrageous' rules that limit personal funds to pay off debt
The Liberals are open to amendments and ‘creative ideas’ to address privacy concerns the opposition has with Bill C-76, says Minister Gould.
Canada's new information commissioner says the bill could impose new barriers and even deter requests, echoing calls for changes that she says are more important than having the bill pass right away. 
Politicians and the media are to blame for using needlessly alarmist language on the rise of asylum seekers, when the system has the capacity to manage, says a former Immigration and Refugee Board chair.
'The reality is a big $7-billion ask will come to a single committee, with roughly a dozen members and they will be required to provide scrutiny in a short period of time,' says Conservative finance critic Pierre Poilievre.
Critics say the Liberals have ‘over-promised’ to veterans while Minister Seamus O'Regan says the government won’t be walking back any of its commitments.
New fundraising numbers put the Conservatives almost double the governing Grits, bringing in $6-million to start 2018.
It's ‘ludicrous' for the opposition to call the central vote a 'slush fund,' says a Treasury Board spokesman.
Indigenous Services has a budget of $9.3-billion compared to $3.1-billion for Crown-Indigenous Relations, according to the main estimates.
Data shows 665 officers nationally have advanced certification to test drug-impaired drivers, which critics say is a problem.
The Hill Times sent questions to all 72 MPs who accepted $620,000 worth of free travel in 2017 and learned most see the practice as important to their parliamentary work, but are divided on the subject of limits and lobbying.
Environment Minister Catherine McKenna and Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr tied as the most lobbied in cabinet in March.
The government approach is 'uncoordinated' when it comes to Russia, says NDP MP Randall Garrison, while Tory critic James Bezan wonders if the PMO is still aiming for Russian 'appeasement.'
Both main opposition parties have an opportunity, say analysts: the Tories to hammer the message that the Liberals are bad managers, and the New Democrats to show they say one thing and do another.
The Liberal convention in Halifax, April 19 to 21, is the last chance for party members to talk policy ahead of the 2019 federal election. It's also a time to gauge, to engage, and to mobilize Grits before the next run.
That was the most spent on a single position out of $1.1-million paid last year to headhunters to help fill nearly 50 positions. Critics question whether it represents unnecessary spending when it doesn't protect from what one called patronage posts.

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