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Treasury Board president resigning.....Scott Briton quitting politics.HHMmm. Just before Vice Admiral Mark Norman trial starts and just before the election. It was suggested that the investigation of the supply ship contract started after the Irving family sent an email to Brison complaining they weren’t getting their share of the pie. Coincidence?...Deny..Deny Deny....Never liked his arrogance (although he was apparently well liked on both sides of the house...anybody that is gay and goes to a fruit farm during the election must have a good sense of humour).


He denied that his decision to quit politics is in any way related to the current controversy surrounding his role in the suspension of Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, the military's second-in-command who has been charged with leaking cabinet secrets. Brison is expected to be a star witness when the case goes to trial in August — just weeks before this year's election campaign officially starts.

"If that issue had never occurred, I would be making the same decision that I'm making now," he said, refusing to further discuss issues that are now before the court.

Brison has admitted to pressing the newly minted Trudeau government in 2015 to suspend a $700-million plan to build a new supply ship, a move that the RCMP alleges prompted Norman to leak secrets to Quebec's Davie Shipbuilding so it could pressure the Liberals into restarting the project.

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I guess they are still using our money to chase votes.

January 14, 2019 3:28 pm

Updated: January 14, 2019 3:38 pm

Federal government investing $5.6M in Indigenous research

nicole-stillger-winter-2018.jpg?quality= By Nicole Stillger Reporter  Global News
Science and Sport Minister Kirsty Duncan announces Indigenous research funding while in Saskatoon."  Science and Sport Minister Kirsty Duncan announces Indigenous research funding while in Saskatoon.

Science and Sport Minister Kirsty Duncan announces Indigenous research funding while in Saskatoon.

Phillip Bollman / Global News
The Canadian government is supporting Indigenous research and reconciliation with $5.6 million in new grants.

Federal Science and Sport Minister Kirsty Duncan awarded 116 recipients from across the country, including researchers from the University of Saskatchewan (U of S), up to $50,000 each to identify new ways of doing research with Indigenous communities.


READ MORE: Climate monitoring stations on Sask. First Nation to help form adaption plan

“To make sure Indigenous, traditional or different ways of knowing are included in research,” Duncan said during the announcement in Saskatoon Monday. “If you live on the land for 10,000 years you need to be able to read the sky, the land, or the water or you don’t survive.”

“We have so much to learn from Indigenous peoples, First Nations, Métis, and Inuit.”

U of S agricultural researcher and grant recipient, Melissa Arcand, said she hopes the funding can enable her to work more closely with other researchers across disciplinary boundaries.

“Look at the economics, the social aspects, the cultural aspects, as well as the biophysical aspects of agriculture as it is practiced in Indigenous communities by Indigenous people,” Arcand said.

READ MORE: James Smith Cree Nation bringing MRI to Saskatoon

Arcand added there’s very little information available on the number of Indigenous farmers in the Prairies and across the country as well as the number of acres under agricultural production.

“It’s really important that was get an understanding of what the status of agriculture is before we can even understand what the issues might be,” Arcand said.

More than half of the grants will go to Indigenous not-for-profit organizations.

The award winners will come together in the spring for a national dialogue to help develop a strategy going forward on research and inform policies.

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"“To make sure Indigenous, traditional or different ways of knowing are included in research,” Duncan said during the announcement in Saskatoon Monday. “If you live on the land for 10,000 years you need to be able to read the sky, the land, or the water or you don’t survive.”"

What kind of research worth $5.6M is needed?

I mean, people have 'survived' all over the planet since the beginning by reading the sky, the land, or the water.

Best practices were retained and civilization moved forward.

I think Malcolm's right; trudeau's out to buy votes with this waste of resources project.

The reports on same ought to be positive though considering all the taxpayer cash trudeau bought the media with.


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In the Trudeau government, what’s a cabinet shuffle for?

Paul Wells: Like the shuffle before it, today’s won’t change anything about a government that’s chronically stage-managed by a tiny cadre of staffers

The main thing to remember about today’s cabinet shuffle is that, outside of the extraordinary tales it tells us about the career paths of its protagonists, as a matter of governance it could well be close to pointless. As evidence, I invite you to tell me who got moved in Justin Trudeau’s previous cabinet shuffle, six months ago.



At the time, I delivered the requisite amount of excitement at the news that Bill Blair was now in charge of—and just now I had to Google him to jog my memory—Border Security and Organized Crime Reduction, which of course nobody should take as any kind of admission that there is any connection between organized crime and border crossers; how could you think that? It’s just two halves of the same minister’s title. And also at the news that Dominic LeBlanc was now the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs.

With hindsight we see that there has been no change on the border-crosser file, nor on the state of organized crime in Canada, that can be traced directly to Blair’s term as a cabinet minister. We also see that Canadian federalism is not wildly more productive or less acrimonious today than it was the day before LeBlanc became its steward.

This is no knock on the ministers involved, who are serious people. But it’s hard to budge the trajectory of state from even a post as exalted as a seat at the federal cabinet table. And harder if the government is, as is becoming increasingly obvious to all observers, chronically stage-managed by a tiny cadre of out-of-their-league staffers operating out of the Building Formerly Known as Langevin.

What problem in the land is LeBlanc authorized to exercise autonomous authority to fix? If Blair were to hop a cab to Ottawa airport today and catch a flight to some border security or organized-crime hotspot, where would he go? To what end?

Moving, at last, to today’s shuffle, I’m actually willing to believe that Jody Wilson-Raybould has not been demoted from Justice to Veterans’ Affairs. Or at least that the point of the move was not to demote her, but to deploy her demonstrated skill at de-escalating drama to a portfolio that’s lately in serious need of de-escalation. The Trudeau Liberals must be amazed to discover the veterans’ file is a problem for them, after they had spent their later opposition years, say 2013-2015, telling themselves any fool could do better than the Conservatives on the file. Seamus O’Regan leaves the department as, to be polite, a fixer-upper, and Wilson-Raybould might have the skill set that could allow her to improve things.

I really wonder whether there’s any hope of that given the habits of the current PMO. Wilson-Raybould would need to be able to meet with veterans’ groups and have them regard her as a real interlocutor, capable of backing her promises with action, free to improvise and deliver change. In real life, she’d have to send her proposed changes back to the PMO, which would, weeks or months down the line, send watered-down variations of her proposals back, along with approved communications language that, if used, would leave anyone sounding like a zombie. Sooner or later her stakeholders would realize they weren’t talking to a minister, they were talking to a machine whose bulk was mostly hidden offstage and whose highly-constrained emissary was Jody Wilson-Raybould.

Certainly the new assignment does not seem to have thrilled her. The long statement she released within hours of being sworn in, reminding everyone of her accomplishments at Justice, sure reads like an expression of frustration. Trudeau cannot have set out to upset her—and we should all remember that he wanted no part of this shuffle, which was prompted by last week’s announcement from Scott Brison that he’s leaving politics—but he’s developing a real knack for putting noses out of joint. He opened 2017 by sending Stéphane Dion to the European Union, which prompted Dion to vanish from public sight for weeks and the EU to take the unprecedented step of signalling that it couldn’t guarantee he would be accepted as an ambassador. This is the kind of mess Trudeau’s office stirs up when they think they are being clever.

READ MORE: Jody Wilson-Raybould on her exit as justice minister

Meanwhile, if we’re correct to guess that Wilson-Raybould has been sent to patch a Seamus O’Regan-shaped hole at Veterans’ Affairs, it’s hard to muster a lot of enthusiasm for O’Regan’s future at Indigenous Services. The rapid climb of Jane Philpott, about whom more in a minute, is one thing. But she doesn’t just go to new jobs, she leaves old ones behind. And Trudeau’s office seems little interested in assigning her old jobs to talents as impressive as Philpott’s, perhaps because there are none. I really think it’s possible O’Regan has been underestimated. But he’d need to be a superman to escape the fate of the last minister who filled a gap left by a Philpott promotion, Ginette Petitpas Taylor, whose influence over the Health portfolio cannot be measured by teams of scientists operating with sensitive equipment in underground caverns.

David Lametti could be an effective Justice minister! He has a sterling CV. He’s an easy guy to like. He has about five months to leave his mark before all of federal politics devolves into campaign-season silliness. How much latitude will he have? Trudeau told reporters before Christmas he has no intention of reducing mandatory minimum sentences imposed by the Conservatives, a promise that’s too delicate to keep in an election year.

This leaves Philpott. Just about all of the trouble I’ve surveyed here—O’Regan to Indigenous Services, Wilson-Raybould to Veterans’ Affairs, a rookie to Justice—would not have been necessary if Trudeau hadn’t decided Philpott was the best replacement for Brison at Treasury Board. She’d better be worth it.

She may be. Philpott’s on the very short list of ministers whose authority is essentially unquestioned in Ottawa, inside and outside the Liberal Party. Ralph Goodale is on that list. Chrystia Freeland, perhaps. That’s the end of the list. But a leading theory to explain Brison’s departure is that he discovered he couldn’t actually get much done at Treasury Board. Constrain the PMO’s fondness for hosing billions of dollars around without a plan? Introduce some order into decision-making? Take power out of the hands of Trudeau’s sorcerer’s-apprentice palace guard so it could be exercised by really anybody else? Brison couldn’t.

Philpott won’t either, if Trudeau doesn’t want her to, if he thinks the administrative bottlenecks, odd fondness for bad communications and preening moral self-regard that have come to characterize his government are either excellent features or flaws that can’t be fixed in an election year. But there’s another possibility. It’s that Philpott has, or might soon be given, a mandate to rationalize government operations across the board, to improve workflow and deliver more autonomy to ministers’ offices and to the public service, at the overdue expense of the PM’s personal secretary, Gerald Butts, who has hoarded decision-making to the detriment of proper management across the government.

READ MORE: Maclean’s Live: Jane Philpott in conversation with Paul Wells

In this vision, Philpott would become an executive deputy Prime Minister without the title, the most powerful treasury board president since Marcel Massé in the aftermath of the 1995 Quebec referendum. She would instill a measure of order in place of chaos, much as Leon Panetta did as Bill Clinton’s second White House chief of staff after Clinton’s first presidential term had already fallen prey to drift and infighting.

I mean, it’s possible, but I would put the likelihood of all this happening at close to zero. The Liberals are well and truly hunkered down in pre-election mode, chippy and defensive, sure they deserve to be re-elected, uncertain what to make of polls giving them a real but not insurmountable advantage. Probably Philpott’s move is as rushed and symbolic as so many of this PM’s ministerial assignments have been. Probably the real power, like the increasingly apparent problems, will continue to reside in a very small number of unelected staffers, whose advantage is that the PM cannot imagine shuffling them.

“Fives hire fours,” Butts used to say of Trudeau’s management style, “but nines hire tens.” It was a spectacularly self-flattering turn of phrase, and it leaves unanswered which number we should assign to a prime minister whose government has become so mired in routine and deadlock that it’s impossible to know who’s a four and who’s a ten, because they all deliver the same results.



Edited by Jaydee

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The Liberal election purse is definitely open.

Federal gov't investing $300k in Dene job creation pilot project

Marc Miller, parliamentary secretary to the minister of crown-Indigenous relations, announced $300,000 in funding to develop a skilled workforce.

Funding will go to Det'on Cho Corporation, economic development arm of Yellowknives Dene First Nation

CBC News · Posted: Jan 15, 2019 3:38 PM CT | Last Updated: an hour agoMarc Miller, parliamentary secretary to the minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, announced $300,000 in federal funding for employment programs for members of the Yellowknives Dene First Nation. (Gabriela Panza-Beltrandi/CBC)

The federal government announced $300,000 in funding for the Yellowknives Dene First Nation for a pilot project meant to increase capacity and job creation today in Yellowknife.

The money will be given to the Det'on Cho Corporation, the economic development arm of the YKDFN. 

Marc Miller, the parliamentary secretary to the federal minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, made the announcement on Tuesday afternoon at Det'on Cho headquarters in N'dilo.

The YKDFN is also investing $771,000 into the program, and another $75,000 a year will come from industry partners. bringing total funding for the project to almost $1.3 million.

The money will be used to develop the skills of five community members by "placing them in strategic roles within the company's management structure," according to a news release, with the aim of progressing them to leadership roles. 

The funding will also be used to remove barriers to employment for YKDFN members, which will be addressed through initiatives such as technical skills training and apprenticeship programs. 

"This pilot program is a positive step towards increasing employment rates and leveraging new opportunities in Indigenous communities," said Miller in the press release. 

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Digging up more votes.

January 16, 2019 12:26 pm

COMMENTARY: The Supreme Court made wrong call on expat voting rights

640 Toronto
image1.jpeg?quality=60&strip=all&w=40&h= By Matt Gurney Radio Host  Global News
News: 2018 Year in Review: A look back at the issues that could define the 2019 federal election

Entering an election year, Global News' parliamentary correspondents sit down for a roundtable on the issues they expect to define the 2019 campaign – and what they'll be watching for.


I would never presume to question the wisdom of the Supreme Court of Canada on matters legal. In that fight, I’d simply be outgunned, as it were, not to mention outnumbered. But the recent ruling in the case of Frank v. Canada (Attorney General) seems an example of where the court got it wrong.

OK, so fine, I’m presuming to question the wisdom.

The case involved two Canadian men — one from Toronto, one from Montreal. Both men went to school in the U.S. and found work there after graduation. Both say they hope to return to Canada when their employment prospects permit it. Both men attempted to vote in the 2011 federal election, but were denied ballots because the Elections Act denied voting rights to Canadians who’d lived out of the country for more than five years.

READ MORE: Supreme Court affirms long-term Canadian expats have right to vote in elections

I’ll skip over a lot of the legal process in the interests of brevity. Suffice to it say that the Supreme Court eventually agreed with the two gentlemen in a 5-2 ruling, with the majority saying that denying long-term expats the right to vote was an overly draconian way to address whatever concerns the government had, and further, that the government had not demonstrated that there was sufficient basis to those concerns to even warrant the limits on voting rights in the first place.

That’s a bit of a simplification — a friend with a keen legal mind noted that one of the five justices in the majority felt that while this specific law was flawed, other similar laws may well have been constitutional. Still, for our purposes here, it’s a win for the expats — and also something of a moot point. The Liberal government had already passed legislation that granted all Canadians voting rights, regardless of their residency. But the SCC ruling carries a practical effect even so. Some future government, if it were of a mind to restore some version of the residency requirement, could be constrained by this ruling — perhaps completely so.

And that’s a shame. Because the Liberals are wrong. Long-term expats shouldn’t be permitted to vote in our elections.

That doesn’t mean they should never be allowed to vote in a Canadian election again. That would be draconian. But it’s fair and proper for long-term expats to be denied a right to vote until they return to Canada, and five years — the full life of a parliament — is as good a timeframe. The two dissenting justices made this point succinctly and elegantly. They noted that under the old law the voting rights of expat Canadians were not in some way irrevocably infringed, they are, instead, temporarily limited. For how long? That’s up to the expat. They can move back any time and instantly have their voting rights restored. The limit is temporary and conditional.

As it should be. Canadian citizenship carries with it certain absolute rights, even while abroad. A Canadian has a right to enter Canada. A Canadian has the right to seek consular assistance from the Canadian government. But voting should be distinct.

READ MORE: Backgrounder — Canada’s law banning expats from voting constitutional?

As it was until recently. The old law, now repealed and with an SCC stake driven through its heart for good measure, was not intended, per se, to punish or even inconvenience Canadians living abroad. It was intended to recognize and protect the special bond between elected members of the federal parliament and their local constituencies. An oft-overlooked, but critical, feature of our democracy is that Canadians don’t vote in one federal election. Canadians instead vote in hundreds of local elections that all happen to occur on the same day. Local residents choose one of their own to represent their local riding (and its interests) in the capital.

Our political shorthand — horserace polls and narrow focus on the party leaders and national issues — obscures the reality of our system, to our misfortune, I think. Canada would be a better-governed country if our MPs acted less as proxies of their party leader and more as representatives of the specific voters who elected them from their riding. But I digress. The problem with expat voting is that those expats do not live in one of Canada’s communities. They may again, and if so, they can vote there again. But so long as they live somewhere else, though they remain Canadian, their right to vote should be temporarily limited.Expats might argue — did argue, in fact, in this case — that geographic distance does not diminish their emotional or family bonds to Canada. I believe them. I have friends and family living to this day in the suburban Toronto town where I grew up. I still visit from time to time. I keep track of its local news and root for its continued prosperity and success. I lived there once. I care for it still.

But I don’t have the right to vote there — not for mayor, not for councillor or trustee, not for provincial or federal representatives. I’ve chosen to live and work elsewhere. I’m only a 20-minute drive or so away, but I’m in a different city, a different riding. I vote where I live. That’s the way it should be. And I, of course, have every legal right in the world to one day pack up my bags and move back to Richmond Hill, and begin voting there.

I’m tilting at a windmill here, of course. The matter seems settled, certainly for the foreseeable future, even if some narrow legal wording could one day restore the now-defunct limit.

But that’s a shame. Canada’s prior limits on voting rights were appropriate and warranted in a democracy. The SCC has concluded that the letter of our laws says otherwise. This seems an opportune moment to recall a certain saying reminding us what the law often is.

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she wants back in Burnaby byelection race

Karen Wang, who resigned as the Liberal candidate in Burnaby South over comments she made about NDP rival Jagmeet Singh on social media, now says she wants back in the race.

Liberal Party says her resignation is final and will not be reversed

Karin Larsen · CBC News · Posted: Jan 17, 2019 10:08 AM PT | Last Updated: 24 minutes ago
Karen Wang has asked the Liberal Party to revoke her resignation. The request has been refused. (Facebook: @karenxbwang)

She was in.

Then she was out.

Now Karen Wang wants back in, asking the Liberals to reconsider letting her run in next month's Burnaby South byelection — despite handing in her resignation Wednesday.

But in a statement, the Liberal Party of Canada says it has refused Wang's request to get back in the race.

"As mentioned yesterday, recent online comments by Karen Wang are not aligned with the values of the Liberal Party of Canada. The Liberal Party has accepted her resignation as a candidate and she will not represent the Liberal Party in the Burnaby South byelection."

Wang was forced to step down in a storm of controversy over a Chinese language WeChat post, in which she wrote that as the only Chinese candidate, she could beat Jagmeet Singh, who she noted is of "Indian descent." 

The party's statement also says Elections Canada no longer considers Wang a candidate following her written resignation. 





Wang has scheduled a news conference at the Metrotown branch of the Burnaby Public Library at 1 p.

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Andrew Coyne: Ex-Liberal candidate’s only crime was engaging in ethnic politics — out loud

‎Yesterday, ‎January ‎18, ‎2019, ‏‎6:43:04 PM | Andrew Coyne

You have to feel for the Liberal Party of Canada, who are surely the real victims in the Karen Wang affair.

The party had innocently selected the B.C. daycare operator to run in next month’s byelection in Burnaby South based solely on her obvious merits as a failed former candidate for the provincial Liberals in 2017, and without the slightest regard to her Chinese ethnicity, in a riding in which, according to the 2016 census, nearly 40 per cent of residents identify as ethnically Chinese.

Imagine their shock when they discovered that she was engaging in ethnic politics.

In a now-infamous post on WeChat, a Chinese-language social media site, Wang boasted of being “the only Chinese candidate” in the byelection, whereas her main opponent — NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh — is “of Indian descent.”

The party was instantly and publicly aghast. Pausing only to dictate an apology to be put out under her name (“I believe in the progress that Justin Trudeau and the Liberal team are making for British Columbians and all Canadians, and I do not wish for any of my comments to be a distraction,” etc etc), party officials issued a statement in which they “accepted her resignation.” Her online comments, the statement noted, “are not aligned with the values of the Liberal Party of Canada.”

Certainly not! How she got the idea that the Liberal Party of Canada was in any way a home for ethnic power-brokers prized for their ability to recruit members and raise funds from certain ethnic groups, or that it would even think of campaigning in ridings with heavy concentrations of voters from a given ethnic group by crude appeals to their ethnic identity — for example by nominating a candidate of the same ethnicity — must remain forever a mystery.

Unless, of course, her real crime was to have said out loud what everybody in politics knows to be the practice, not just of the Liberals but of every party, but prefers not to mention. But the thing having been said, the party had no alternative but to pretend to be appalled, just as the other parties had no alternative but to pretend to be outraged.

There is, after all, a script for these things. Usually it is performed at the expense of the Conservatives, as in the controversy a few years back over a leaked party memo proposing an advertising strategy for “very ethnic” ridings, or another that urged a candidate’s photo include voters of different ethnic backgrounds — as if every party did not do this, every day. Again, the crime was to have said what must be left unsaid, or rather to have been caught doing so.

The only difference in this case is that it involves the Liberals, usually the first to feign such outrage, now forced to yield the stage to the NDP. Thus the NDP’s Nathan Cullen was quoted saying Wang’s post was “the worst kind of politics there is,” while Singh himself observed how “politics that divide along racial lines hurt our communities… I want to focus in on politics that bring people together.”


Former Burnaby South candidate Karen Wang before a news conference on Jan. 17, 2019.

It takes some effort, hearing such admirable sentiments, to recall NDP officials’ open speculation, after Singh was elected party leader, that this would improve their chances in cities such as Brampton, Ont., or Surrey, B.C., with large numbers of Sikh voters. It doesn’t necessarily follow, of course: voters of all ethnicities display a stubborn tendency to think and vote as individuals, frustrating parties’ efforts to sort them into little boxes. But that doesn’t mean the parties don’t think that way, or act accordingly.

For her part, the lesson Wang drew from the controversy was that she should have limited herself to stressing her own ethnicity, without mentioning Singh’s. “As a Canadian with a Chinese background, normally, obviously, you are trying to gain people’s support from the same cultural background,” she told her post-resignation news conference.

Which at least has the virtue of honesty. The hypocrisy of the universal outrage over Wang’s appeal to tribalism is not just that all the parties do it, as a matter of practical politics, but that much respectable opinion believes it to be right and proper as a matter of principle. Thus, for example, electoral boundaries are supposed to be drawn in conformity with what is delicately called “community of interest,” on the precise understanding to which Wang sought to appeal: that membership in an ethnic or other identity group trumps. At the limit, it emerges in calls for special dedicated ridings — even a separate Parliament — for Indigenous voters.

This is hardly confined to politics: across society, progressive ideology has lately taught us, not to emphasize our common humanity, but the opposite: that people of one group may not — cannot — be represented by those of another; that they are to be judged, not as individuals, but on the basis of their race, gender and so on. The current generation of federal Liberals, in particular, has made hiring quotas the defining principle of their government, to be institutionalized from top to bottom.

It is lovely to hear Liberal ministers proclaim, in response to the Wang affair, that “the value we stand for is representing all Canadians,” just as it is heartening to read an NDP commentator denounce the idea of reducing voters to “a passive, two-dimensional identity to be exploited for someone else’s elevation to the political class.” If only they meant it.

NP_Top_Stories?d=yIl2AUoC8zA NP_Top_Stories?i=xJ3GzXbTyLs:pF3IPvsh6ss:V_sGLiPBpWU NP_Top_Stories?i=xJ3GzXbTyLs:pF3IPvsh6ss:F7zBnMyn0Lo
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Now she’s considering a run as an independent. Here’s hoping she does as it will demolish the Libtards more than any other party.

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And proving once and for all that they don't play the "race" game, here is the new liberal candidate. ?  Mind you, all successful political parties play the same game, it's called giving the voters someone they can identify with and that is why the Burnaby by election will be very interesting to follow as I think the NDP chose the wrong riding to attempt to seat their leader..

January 19, 2019 8:59 am

Federal Liberals tap former B.C. MLA Richard Lee as new candidate in Burnaby South

By Richard Zussman and Sean Boynton Global News
Richard Lee is the new Liberal candidate in the Burnaby South byelection. "Richard Lee is the new Liberal candidate in the Burnaby South byelection.

Richard Lee is the new Liberal candidate in the Burnaby South byelection.


After a rocky week, the Liberals have found a new candidate for the Burnaby South byelection.

Former B.C. Liberal MLA Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh in the race, joining the party days after former candidate Karen Wang left the race over a controversial social media post.

Wang dropped out as the Liberal candidate on Wednesday after a Chinese-language post on WeChat appeared to urge voters to support her as the only candidate of Chinese origin and singled out Singh as being “of Indian origin.”

READ MORE: Jagmeet Singh says NDP caucus is unified under his leadership after recent hiccups

Lee served as MLA for Burnaby North for 16 years starting in 2001 before losing re-election in 2017. He served as deputy speaker in the legislature for the last two of those years, the first MLA of Asian descent to hold the role.

“I’m proud to call Burnaby my home, and this byelection is about ensuring Burnaby South has a strong voice in Parliament to help make life better for families in this community,” Lee said in a statement released Saturday.

READ MORE: Liberal candidate Karen Wang steps aside after pointing to Jagmeet Singh’s ‘Indian origin’ on WeChat

“I’m looking forward to working with Justin Trudeau to keep making progress on Burnaby’s priorities, like investing in new affordable housing and better transit, creating good middle-class jobs, and protecting a healthy environment for our kids and grandkids.”

A day after resigning, Wang sent a request to the Liberal party asking to be brought back on as their candidate, claiming the message was misunderstood. She also tried to make her case to the media at an impromptu news conference in Burnaby on Thursday.

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More vote buying.

The Liberal government wants to pin more medals on bureaucrats

‎Today, ‎January ‎20, ‎2019, ‏‎6 hours ago | Dean Beeby

The Liberal government says public servants are being shortchanged in Canada's awards and honours system, and so has started a quota system to ensure federal departments nominate more of their bureaucrats - at least five per department each year. It's not clear whether the initiative is having any impact yet.

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Evidently the Leader of the NDP does not believe in "The Majority Wins" so I guess if he does not garner 100% of the votes in the upcoming byelection, he will refuse to take the seat. ?

In the case of Trans Mountain, in his mind it is all or nothing.

Abandon Trans Mountain if consultations fail to satisfy all Indigenous stakeholders, says Singh

Jagmeet Singh says the federal government should be willing to end the expansion of the TransMountain pipeline if consultations do not end in “partnership” and “buy in” from all the communities along the route.

'That is not meaningful consultation if you've already decided the outcome'

Rosemary Barton · CBC News · Posted: Jan 20, 2019 4:00 AM ET | Last Updated: 17 minutes ago

Jagmeet Singh says the federal government should be willing to terminate the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline if consultations do not end in "partnership" and "buy-in" from all the communities along the route.

"They can't say that they want to build something and say it's going to be built, and then on the other side say, 'We're going to meaningfully consult with communities.' That is not meaningful consultation if you've already decided the outcome," the NDP leader said in a wide-ranging interview to air on CBC's The National this Sunday night.


Singh declared last spring that he was opposed to the Trans Mountain expansion project. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, a New Democrat who has been lobbying hard for Trans Mountain, called Singh's position on the pipeline "naive."


Singh, who doesn't currently hold a seat in the House of Commons, is now running in the federal byelection in Burnaby South, a community where many have deep concerns about the pipeline and its expansion. Voters go to the polls Feb. 25.

'Open to no'


Singh said Ottawa should be "open to no" after its second round of consultations with First Nations.

Last August, the Federal Court of Appeal quashed licensing for the $7.4 billion expansion project, telling the Trudeau government it would have to do further "meaningful" consultation with First Nations and that concerns about increased tanker traffic had not been adequately addressed.

The government accepted those findings and named former Supreme Court justice Frank Iacobucci to lead Phase 3 of its Indigenous consultations. No deadline has been set for those consultations to end.


Singh said that if those consultations suggest that not all communities on the pipeline route are on board, the federal government must accept that.

"I mean the communities that are impacted, the lands, the sovereign nations that are impacted, may not accept that this is a project that they want to support," he said. "And that is something that the government has to be prepared to accept."

A Supreme Court decision from 2017 (involving the Ktunaxa Nation and the development of a ski hill) made it clear, however, that section 35 of the Constitution — which deals with Indigenous rights — does not give Indigenous communities the right to veto a project.

"Where adequate consultation has occurred," that ruling said, "a development may proceed without consent."

Singh acknowledged the legal limits but suggested that reconciliation with First Nations means the government ought to go further.

"Well, we've got to be committed to doing more than just checking off a box," he said. "That's not enough. That's not actually going to be reconciliation. If you just go say, 'Well look, I've done this and I've done this I've checked off a box ... that's not meaningful reconciliation."

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh speaks to the CBC's Rosemary Barton. When it comes to consulting Indigenous communities on the Trans Mountain pipeline, he said, "we've got to be committed to doing more than just checking off a box." (CBC News)

The government made the decision to purchase Trans Mountain for $4.5 billion after project proponent Kinder Morgan deemed it too financially risky to pursue due to the drawn-out court challenges. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said he is committed to the project and believes it is the "national interest."

Singh said the project should be driven by the private sector and no public money should be used for resource development.

As for the tens of thousands of Canadians who rely on the oil sector for work — or who have been laid off from oilpatch jobs in recent years — Singh said it's not their "fault" the energy sector is unpredictable and the government should be investing in "sustainable" jobs for the future.

On the issue of climate change, Singh said that if he were to be elected prime minister he would set much tougher national emissions targets — despite the fact that no developed country, Canada included, is on track to meet the emissions targets set in the Paris climate accord.

Singh also said he supports a carbon tax but wants a "progressive" one that costs more for those who emit more while costing families less. He would not go into details on how that would work, saying the NDP's carbon tax plan will be released eventually.

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Hopefully this will cost the Liberals votes in Quebec.


For Trudeau, it’s all about electoral politics

img?regionKey=V4ujAS8ReTiVB9W2xPsZ7w%3d%3dPAUL CHIASSON/THE CANADIAN PRESS Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, right, meets with Quebec Premier Francois Legault in Sherbrooke, Que.

TORONTO — It’s an interesting contrast, how Justin Trudeau deals with Quebec’s premier compared to Ontario’s and it tells you a lot about the coming election.

When it comes to the Trudeau government’s relationship with Ontario Premier Doug Ford, it is attack, attack, attack. Trudeau even had one of his ministers label one of Ford’s ministers “unCanadian”.


She dared to demand that the feds pay up for their portion of the mess caused by illegal border crossers.

Ontario’s Lisa MacLeod wasn’t telling Trudeau’s immigration minister to stop bringing people in, even those crossing illegaly. She simply told Ahmed Hussen that the feds owed Ontario $200 million.

Compare that to what happened with Francois Legault this week.

Trudeau met with Legault in Sherbrooke, Que. where the

Liberals were holding a cabinet retreat.

Legault told the PM that he wants Quebec to reduce the number of immigrants it takes in from 50,000 to 40,000, wants to keep the current level of immigration funding he gets from the feds and wants $300 million in compensation for those illegal border crossers.

Oh and Legault also said that before immigration levels rise in Quebec he wants a language test and a values test in place.

If Ontario made that same list of demands it would be mere seconds until Gerry Butts, the PM’s top adviser, begins calling Ford a Nazi on Twitter. Legault got a meeting. Senior ministers from both governments will meet in two weeks to hammer out the details.

It all comes down to electoral politics.

Trudeau knows that Legault is right in line with public opinion in Quebec on immigration. The people of that province are fed up with the illegal crossings and Trudeau’s refusal to deal with it.

For our normally sunnyways, diversityis-everything PM, he can’t run against Legault or be offside on his immigration demands.

The Liberals only have a 12 seat majority and they know that they will be losing seats in Alberta, British Columbia and quite probably Ontario.

They need to make those up somewhere and they think Quebec is key. They want to build on their 40 seats there and fighting with Legault on immigration will hurt them.

It’s the opposite in Ontario.

Team Trudeau sees fighting with Ford as a key to success.

The plan is to make

Ford the enemy and rally as many lefty voters to the Trudeau Liberal banner as they can.

With Ford’s PC Party winning many of the same seats that the

Liberals hold federally, the Trudeau braintrust is worried those seats could flip Conservative blue in October.

So it is constant battles on the carbon tax, on immigration funding, on language rights.

In fact Trudeau’s minister for official languages, Melanie

Joly, just announced

$1.9 million in funding for a French language university that the Ontario government cancelled.

“We will always be there for the Franco-Ontarian community as a partner for the French University of Ontario,” Joly said.

Except there is no French University of Ontario.

Citing budget pressures, the Ford government put plans for that school on hold along with three English universities.

Ever since, Trudeau’s Liberals have been attacking the Ford government on this file.

So where is this

$1.9 million going if there is no school?

It is going to the group of activists that have been agitating for the school to allow them to keep working for the next year.

Meaning they are paying a group, with taxpayers money, to attack the Ford government on an issue that will help Trudeau.

Let’s face it, if Trudeau really cared so much about official bilingualism then he and his team would be denouncing the Quebec government forcing a hospital in LaChute to remove English from its signs or Legault’s plans to do away with nine English school boards.

But it isn’t about official bilingualism, it is about winning votes and the next election.

We will always be there for the Franco-Ontarian community as a partner for the French University of Ontario.” Minister for Official Languages Melanie Joly

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‎Today, ‎January ‎21, ‎2019, ‏‎7 minutes ago

Andrew Coyne: Shameless bidding war for Quebec votes is only going to get worse

‎Today, ‎January ‎21, ‎2019, ‏‎1 hour ago | Andrew Coyne

Seldom has “profitable federalism” seemed quite so … mercenary.

The phrase, popularized by Robert Bourassa to describe Quebec’s emotionless relationship with the rest of Canada — an update on Duplessis’s “rendez-vous notre butin” — was always fairly grubby in intent, but typically appeared shrouded in the majestic purple of nationalist agitprop, in which Quebec is forever serenely approaching its inevitable destiny and all that.

But these days Quebecers seem less enamoured of inevitable destinies, so Premier Francois Legault made no attempt to dress up his list of demands for parties seeking his support in the coming federal election as anything more than what it was. The list included money to extend a subway line in Montreal; money to compensate his government for the costs of dealing with the influx of asylum seekers; and money for Quebec’s dairy farmers, to compensate them for the barely discernible opening of Canada’s milk market under the renegotiated NAFTA.

But what is money without power, so Legault also came armed with the traditional demands of Quebec premiers for more powers: more power over immigration, in which Quebec is already all but sovereign, notwithstanding its membership in a federation whose borders are controlled by the federal government and whose citizens are permitted to move freely about the country; and more power over the collection of income taxes.

Come again, you ask? Doesn’t Quebec already collect its own income tax, uniquely among the provinces, thus imposing upon its long-suffering citizens the obligation to fill out not one but two separate forms at income tax time? Yes: Legault’s proposed solution is for Quebec to collect the federal tax, as well.

There are three things to note about Legault’s list, beyond its outrageousness. One, it is only preliminary: Legault was at pains to note that there would be more. Two, even if fulfilled to the letter, it will not actually be enough to win his support — “I won’t support any federal party,” he said as he emerged from a meeting with the prime minister in Sherbrooke on Thursday — but only avert his active hostility.

And three: if his intent was to set off a bidding war among the federal parties, he needn’t have bothered. With the Quebec vote in play this election, thanks to the collapse of the NDP and the Bloc, in a way it has not been in decades, the bidding war started long ago.

Under Andrew Scheer, the Conservatives have expressed a willingness to pander to the nationalist vote that is pathetic even by Tory standards. On the issue of the income tax, for example, Legault was put in the unusual position for a Quebec premier of demanding something that had already been promised.


Quebec Premier Francois Legault met with Justin Trudeau recently and presented the Prime Minister with a preliminary list of his province’s demands.

As long ago as last spring the Tories were signalling they would make this offering to the nationalist gods, undeterred either by its obvious effrontery — it was Quebec, not the federal government, who created the problem — or its ominous portents: it is not hard to imagine the potential for mischief, in the event of some future federal-provincial dispute, should the government of Canada have to depend upon the grace and favour of the government of Quebec for a fifth of its revenues.

At any rate, that is but one of the items on the list of offers Scheer unveiled Monday in Montreal — again, with the pledge of more to come. There, too, was the promise to “respect Quebec” by giving it “more autonomy” on immigration, though Scheer could not say in what regard Quebec lacks the needed autonomy today. There was also a promise to appoint a separate minister of Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (the various regional development agencies are currently grouped under a single minister) whose significance you can probably guess at.

Mind you, Scheer is offside with Legault on one thing: the Energy East pipeline — though since the project is probably a dead letter neither man is likely to find his professed convictions put to the test. The federal Liberals, on the other hand, have made clear that Quebec’s opposition to a pipeline is sufficient in principle to kill it — in a way that B.C.’s, say, is not.

On other issues, the Grits will find the pandering harder going. Legault’s declared policies with regard to immigration are twofold: to reduce it, at least temporarily, from 52,000 to 40,000, and to impose upon immigrants a language and “values” test, on pain of expulsion for those who fail. The first would seem contrary to the Liberals’ own declared policy of raising immigration, from 310,000 to 350,000 over three years; the second, to the Charter of Rights.

Yet rather than give these proposals the back of their hand — oh yes, Legault also demands the reduction in Quebec’s immigration levels be accompanied by an increase in federal funding — federal ministers will meet with their Quebec counterparts this month to discuss them. As the combined impact of each level of government pursuing its own chosen course would be to reduce Quebec’s share of the country’s population — unthinkable! — it would be unwise to rule out the possibility of more tail-wagging-the-dog solutions a la the federal income tax.

As for handing the government of Quebec control of the federal purse strings, the best argument the Liberals have been able to muster against it is that it would cost jobs at federal tax processing centres in the province. Unprofitable federalism, in other words.

It is only going to get worse; the federal election is still nine months away. What the NDP, whose current leader would seem less opposed to separation than most Quebecers, will put on the table can only be imagined. How this unseemly bidding war will play out in the rest of the country, on the other hand, is too dreadful to contemplate.

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Trudeau on track to spend more on government programs than any Canadian prime minister: study

‎Today, ‎January ‎22, ‎2019, ‏‎17 minutes ago | Marie-Danielle Smith

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is on track to spend more on federal government programs than any prime minister before him, according to a new study, but his predecessor Stephen Harper still holds the record for the single most expensive year.

Trudeau’s government will have spent about $8,600 per Canadian on programming for the 2018-19 financial year, according to the Fraser Institute, a right-leaning think tank.

That’s a bit less than what Harper spent in 2009, during the economic recession, and about 50-per-cent more than average spending during the last long-haul Liberal tenure under Jean Chrétien and Paul Martin.

The study’s authors looked all the way back to 1870, adjusting dollar amounts for inflation and population. The numbers don’t include interest paid on the national debt, the paper says, since what governments inherit is not always under their immediate control.

Big spikes on the timeline are reflective of world events. In the first half of the 20th century, for example, Canada was spending many times as much during the First and Second World Wars as it was during peacetime, with increases in programming costs directly tied to military spending.


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responds to questions during a news conference following a cabinet retreat in Sherbrooke, Que. on Friday, January 18, 2019.

Spending went up from about $1,000 per person in the late ’30s to about $7,000 at the height of the war and back down to under $2,000 in the late ’40s before beginning a steady increase, including through the Pierre Trudeau years, that stabilized under Progressive Conservative Brian Mulroney’s government in the ’80s and was brought down under Chrétien. Liberal fiscal reforms reduced spending by 16.5 per cent per person in Chrétien’s first three budgets, according to the analysis.

The study identified which Canadian prime ministers have increased or decreased spending the most. Liberal PM Louis St. Laurent oversaw the biggest post-war increase (up seven per cent), partly explained by Canada’s participation in the Korean War in the early ’50s. Since then the biggest average decline was under the PCs’ Joe Clark (down five per cent), but he was only prime minister for nine months.

Mulroney and Chrétien each oversaw a modest decline in per-person spending of 0.3 per cent from the year they entered office to the year of their electoral defeats. Under Martin, from 2004 to 2006, the average annual increase was 2.6 per cent; it was 1.5 per cent under Harper and is 3.1 per cent under Trudeau so far.

The study points out that Trudeau’s tenure “has occurred during a period of stable economic growth (i.e. no war or recession).”

• Email: | Twitter: mariedanielles

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January 23, 2019 9:46 am

Ottawa to fund programs, mental health services at La Loche high school: Trudeau

By Staff The Canadian Press

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says $2.2 million will be spent over five years to help people at a northern Saskatchewan school recover from a deadly shooting.

Trudeau made the announcement during a stop in La Loche, about 700 kilometres northwest of Saskatoon.

READ MORE: Justin Trudeau to focus on Saskatchewan in election strategy, experts say

The visit comes one day after the third anniversary of shootings at the high school and a home in the remote Dene community that left four people dead and seven injured.

Trudeau says the money is to fund new programs and resources at the school, as well as mental-health services for students.

READ MORE: Trudeau arrives in La Loche, tells community to stand together after shooting

Premier Scott Moe also announced at the event that money will be spent to build new housing for teachers and health-care staff in the community.

The province is working with a construction company in La Loche on the $3-million project.

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