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Former prime minister Stephen Harper, pictured in this file photo, who is making national and international headlines is like a 'political Christmas' gift for Justin Trudeau's Liberals, says pollster Nik Nanos. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Conservatives say if Harper’s public engagements start to damage the brand, he’ll ‘back off’

News|By Abbas Rana
Stephen Harper, who said back in February that he could still "easily" be leader of the Conservative Party but decided not to in order to secure the party's future fortunes, has been generating a number…

In the political fight of her life: who’s who on Wynne’s campaign team 

The Ontario Liberal campaign team includes David Herle, Deb Matthews, Michele Cadario, Mel Wright, Chad Walsh, Rebecca MacKenzie, Drew Davidson, Bob Lopinski, Zita Astravas, Jamie Kippen, and more.

PM Trudeau should declare Elections Modernization Act No. 1 priority if he wants it passed by next month, says Sen. Joyal

News|By Abbas Rana
‘We will not work on Justin Trudeau’s timeline’ on Bill C-76 or any other piece of legislation, says Conservative Senate Whip Don Plett.

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‘Quite a few caveats’: Morneau’s vague, B.C.-only ‘indemnity’ arouses questions about a growing federal financial stake, economists say

News|By Jolson Lim
When asked by reporters on May 16 about his indemnity pledge against costs due to delays caused by B.C., Bill Morneau wouldn’t put a cap on how much federal taxpayer money he's willing to cough up.

Freeland’s office says ‘any discussions’ with Iran will be solely centred on Maryam Mombeini

News|By Neil Moss
But Peter Jones, a professor of public and international affairs at the University of Ottawa, said Chrystia Freeland's position could limit the government's ability to engage with Iran.

Canada’s banking sector must innovate or risk falling behind, say prestigious Donner Prize-winning authors

Feature|By Shruti Shekar
'When you look at the core business, it’s still running pretty much the way it was run 40 years ago,' says Patricia Meredith, one of two authors who won the $50,000 prize for best public policy book announced last week.

Conservative ‘political shenanigans’ delay access bill review in Upper Chamber, says Senate sponsor

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. 

Liberals risk new-Canadian vote with border-crossing response, say pollsters

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.

Indigenous services minister says plan to eliminate water advisories is on track

News|By Emily Haws
In a Q&A this week, Jane Philpott also said she hopes Indigenous child welfare legislation will be tabled by fall, and that in leading her new department she's focused on customer service and improved staff morale.

NDP MP Moore likely had no choice but to defend herself by offering intimate details of sexual encounter with Afghanistan veteran, say observers

NDP MP Christine Moore 'clearly wanted to get her side of the story out and, given the potential consequences for her career and her reputation, I don't blame her for trying to do that,' says Conservative strategist Rachel Curran.
Former prime minister Stephen Harper, pictured in this file photo, who is making national and international headlines is like a 'political Christmas' gift for Justin Trudeau's Liberals, says pollster Nik Nanos. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Conservatives say if Harper’s public engagements start to damage the brand, he’ll ‘back off’

News|By Abbas Rana
Stephen Harper, who said back in February that he could still "easily" be leader of the Conservative Party but decided not to in order to secure the party's future fortunes, has been generating a number…

Pipeline impasse as big as ever

Opinion|By Chantal HÉbert
A month after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stepped in to resolve the impasse between British Columbia and Alberta over the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, his government has little to show for its efforts.…

Federal Liberals alienating both sides in Kinder Morgan fight

Opinion|By Greg Lyle
There is a political price to be paid for this disapproval. One third (33%) of Canadians say they are less likely to vote Liberal because of the way they have handled the issue. Just 12% say more likely.

With eight sitting days before Kinder Morgan’s deadline, no word on pipeline legislation

News|By Emily Haws
Expect disabilities legislation to be tabled before summer, but the government to otherwise focus on getting through priority bills already in the House.

A transparency failure conference, Facebook hijinks and dished-out government ‘info’ 

Opinion|By Ken Rubin
OTTAWA—There is no doubt that public mistrust has been heightened by a growing list of government-managed exclusions of ministerial and other records. So it was intriguing to find out that one brainstorming policy idea, found…

Lobbying czar calls for ‘transparency by default,’ cutting 20 per cent rule

News|By Shruti Shekar
NDP MP Charlie Angus also wants Parliamentarians to discuss regulating lobbyists who take up jobs as political staffers.

Cannabis bill missing one thing: quick action on dose control

Opinion|By Josh Campbell
The feds must act on vaporizers and concentrates sooner to ensure the black market doesn’t first.

There’s a fine line between right to protest and public safety

Opinion|By Phil Gurski
These are highly staged events, planned months and years in advance and little is left to chance. The leaders’ conference is held in a bubble anyway, minimizing any likely effect on the mindset of those leaders. There are many more opportunities to effect change.

Myanmar: the perfect opportunity for Canada to show up

Opinion|By John Gruetzner
Canada already set a global example in accepting Syrians who can’t return home. Now it should take a hands-on role that actually returns Rohingya refugees home in a safe way.

Quebec survey respondents positive, pragmatic about ties with China

A new survey shows that Quebecers have views of China even more positive than in the rest of Canada.

Philpott’s $9-billion Indigenous Services budget triple Bennett’s in new departments’ inaugural year

Indigenous Services has a budget of $9.3-billion compared to $3.1-billion for Crown-Indigenous Relations, according to the main estimates.

Trade tops March lobbying, with Mercosur, NAFTA, CPTPP talks all in play

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna and Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr tied as the most lobbied in cabinet in March.

MPs defend taking trips paid by lobbyists, foreign governments, but some say the practice needs review

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.

PMO hires new issues adviser straight out of Finance Minister Morneau’s office

Feature|By Laura Ryckewaert
NDP deputy director communications Sarah Andrews is exiting her role at the end of the month.

Friends and former political foes turn out to see Bob Rae get lifetime achievement award

Feature|By Shruti Shekar
Plus, Andrew Scheer and The Hill Times are hosting upcoming parties for reporters and Hillites.

New staffers for ministers Freeland, Morneau, Sajjan

Feature|By Laura Ryckewaert
Plus, Zita Astravas, chief of staff to the defence minister, is on leave from the Hill to help out the Ontario Liberal campaign.

Senators want more control in clerk selection, PMO to butt out

Parliament ‘isn’t an instrument of government,’ says Tory Sen. Housakos, who put forward a motion that the next Senate clerk be appointed ‘with the express recommendation of the Senate.’

Library of Parliament Committee meeting three years overdue

Feature|By Shruti Shekar
CP's Washington correspondent Alex Panetta is leaving the wire service for an undisclosed new opportunity, and NDP leader Jagmeet Singh lands a spot on the Young Global Leaders list created by the World Economic Forum.

Health minister hires new communications director, Mathieu Filion, from Duclos’ team

Juniors Damy has left the Prime Minister’s Office, where he’d been a special assistant for appointments for more than two years.

Political opportunism one reason for Conservative rejection of carbon pricing

Opinion|By David Crane
TORONTO—My late great, friend Fraser Mustard, founder of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, would often ask, “why is there such a gap between what we know and what we do?” The British economist, Diane…

Private corporation tax proposals could make financing conditions worse for small business

Opinion|By Ian C.W. Russell
The government’s proposed measures will discourage the specialized large private corporations from undertaking advisory and financing activities in the small business sector, writes Ian Russell.

Feds say they’re listening to northerners as they review food subsidies, oil and gas exploration rules, Arctic policy

Feature|By Emily Haws
Northerners need to be ‘in control of their destiny,’ says the Crown-Indigenous relations minister.

Oil and gas companies in limbo await decision on Arctic offshore drilling licences

News|By Jolson Lim
Companies currently permitted to explore for deposits or hold on to discoveries in Arctic waters have waited in uncertainty since December 2016 over whether they can continue to operate.

Establish northern university, feds hear, as Arctic policy framework talks wrap

News|By Emily Haws
Canada is the only Arctic nation without a university specifically within the arctic itself, which means Canada is lagging behind, said Conservative Senator Dennis Patterson.

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Opinion|Susan Riley
CHELSEA, QUE.—This country needs a reconstructed Conservative Party—one that embodies the prudent policy and personal rectitude of a Peter Loughheed, Bill Davis, Joe Clark, or Robert Stanfield, not the extremism, vitriol, and defiant ignorance on…
Opinion|Sheila Copps
The bizarre juxtaposition of death and celebration was no accident. Israeli Minister of Public Security, Strategic Affairs and Information Gilad Erdan defended the deaths, telling Ynet News: 'We need to go back to targeted killings, and they need to go back to hiding underground and fearing for their lives, not organizing the masses to carry out terror attacks.'
Processes to ensure a fair and impartial hearing for both alleged victims and perpetrators of harassment are crucial to existing Hill harassment policies, as well as the newly tabled federal legislation under Bill C-65.
OTTAWA—It’s hard to know how to hold the media accountable these days. It used to be one could cancel a subscription, or write letters to the editor that would actually be read. Nowadays, fewer people…
OAKVILLE, ONT.—I recently received a summons to show up at a courtroom for possible jury duty. And naturally, like any other red-blooded, civic-minded citizen, my initial reaction to the summons was, “How do I get…
Opinion|Tim Powers
With caucus-conduct controversies and concerns about his chances in the next election, it’s not a great time to be the NDP leader.
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Politics This Morning: House to return for five-week home stretch; Wilson-Raybould, Duclos to make family law announcement; PBO to release carbon tax report

Good Tuesday morning, Here's hoping you had a wondering Victoria Day long weekend! Parliament is back again after a week off and will begin a final, five-week sitting period before the House adjourns next month…

Justice minister gets new chief of staff, Jessica Prince

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould has a new chief of staff in her ministerial office, with former senior policy adviser Jessica Prince having recently returned to take on the top job. Ms. Prince had been a…

Staff changes for Finance Minister Morneau, new directors promoted

A few more senior staffing changes have taken place in Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s office recently, including the departure of his director of parliamentary affairs, Catherine Loiacono, on April 23. Ms. Loiacono had joined Mr. Morneau’s…

Talaga win caps off lively Politics & the Pen gala

More than 500 Hillites attended Politics & the Pen, or what some like to call Ottawa’s “nerd prom,” where The Toronto Star reporter Tanya Talaga won the coveted Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing. Her book Seven Fallen Feathers: Racism, Death, and…
Feature|Shruti Shekar

Tories jet off to fight Liberals in Star Wars spoof, Hann says more to come

In a galaxy far, far away (actually, it was just on Parliament Hill) Conservative MP Erin O’Toole was spotted with a lightsaber in hand ready to board a spacecraft that would take him to fight…
Feature|Shruti Shekar

Parliamentary Centre celebrates 50 years with 300-person gala

The Parliamentary Centre started out to support the Canadian Parliament. Fifty years later, it's expanded to help 120 legislatures in 45 countries better serve the people they represent. On the evening of April 23, the…
Feature|Shruti Shekar

Inaugural Women on the Hill shindig draws 500, and MPs from all parties

The inaugural Women on the Hill event, hosted by Earnscliffe Strategy Group's Velma McColl at the Sir John A. Macdonald Building last Monday night, attracted nearly 500 guests who mingled, networked, and celebrated a belated International…
Feature|Shruti Shekar

G7 can’t exclude U.S., despite disagreements, say envoys

Diplomats representing G7 countries in Canada say the group can't exclude the United States even if most members disagree with it on a growing number of issues, including most recently its decision to pull out…
Feature|Shruti Shekar

ASEAN trade deal ‘will happen, it is very strong,’ says new Thai envoy

Thailand's new ambassador, Maris Sangiampongsa, says his country’s military-run government will “not stall” ongoing talks toward a possible trade deal between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and Canada. In 2015, Mr. Sangiampongsa's predecessor said the Conservative government…

House comes back Tuesday for five busy legislative weeks before summer recess

Monday, May 21st, 2018
Thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators gathered on Parliament Hill for the annual March for Life on May 10. As the marchers took to the streets off the Hill that afternoon, they met counter-protesters and tied up traffic in downtown Ottawa.
The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade
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