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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals started seeking advice from “deliverology” expert Sir Michael Barbershortly after last year’s election victory, flying him in to speak at the three cabinet retreats this year. (Sean Kilpatrick/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals started seeking advice from “deliverology” expert Sir Michael Barbershortly after last year’s election victory, flying him in to speak at the three cabinet retreats this year. (Sean Kilpatrick/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Politics Briefing

Trudeau to give opening speech on Paris ratification Add to ...

POLITICS BRIEFING

By Chris Hannay (@channay) and Rob Gilroy (@rgilroy)

The Globe Politics is pleased to include a roundup of news and opinion on U.S. politics, through until this year’s election in November. As always, let us know what you think of the newsletter. Sign up here to get it by e-mail each morning.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW IN OTTAWA

> Today is all about the environment. In Ottawa, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will kick off debate about ratifying the Paris agreement on climate change with a speech at noon. In Montreal, Environment Minister Catherine McKenna is meeting with her provincial counterparts to hammer out the details for a plan so Canada can actually meet those Paris emissions-reduction targets. However, they may not get very far today.

> The federal government will announce today that it is closing a loophole for foreign real-estate buyers, which is part of a bid to cool offshore speculation in Canada’s housing market.

> Cities are feeling overwhelmed by problems popping up from the Liberal plan to legalize pot.

> The federal government already changed rules for pilots so they could keep their licenses without having to fly real planes.

> House committees are being told to cool their jets after spending a lot on travel.

> The Liberals spent $200,000 for the advice of British “deliverology” guru Michael Barber.

> A Supreme Court bench made up of mostly newcomers has a challenging fall session ahead. Justice writer Sean Fine has a close look at the docket.

> A CBC-Angus Reid Institute poll found 68 per cent of respondents think minorities should assimilate into Canadian culture, as opposed to maintaining their own customs.

> More than a dozen Conservatives have or are considering entering the party’s leadership race, and some are concerned whether there’s enough fundraising money to go around. Meanwhile, candidates are starting to attack each other and it’s getting personal.

> And Canadian studies professors are holding a conference later this month to figure out what to criticize now that Stephen Harper is no longer prime minister. “The loss of the Harper government for Canadian academics is not unlike the loss of George W. Bush for American comedians,” a description of the conference says.

U.S. ELECTION 2016

> The tempest in a tax file: The Globe and Mail’s John Ibbitson says the Saturday release of Donald Trump’s 1995 taxes – which revealed a huge loss and suggested he may not have paid taxes for nearly 20 years – has sent an already-reeling campaign into deeper disarray. “There is still time for yet another recovery, but to achieve that Mr. Trump must somehow change the narrative away from his erratic and abusive behaviour. Instead, he kept it firmly in place this weekend.”

> The trouble with taxes: In the Washington Post, Steven Weisman looks at the history of income tax in America, and isn’t so sure about Trump’s smarmy response during last week’s debate that he’s “smart” for possibly avoiding paying it: “Trump seemed to assume that Americans would admire his savvy. He’s almost certainly wrong. … Americans may not love paying taxes, but what they hate even more is rich people not paying their fair share.”

> The unhinging of a candidate: Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post says Trump’s Saturday night rally – held just after The New York Times released its story about the candidate’s 1995 tax return – “was ‘nasty.’ He seems mean, angry, vindictive. None of those words tend to be what people use to describe presidents.”

> The turnaround plan: Also in the Post, Philip Rucker looks at the current state of the Trump campaign. He says Trump “hopes to recover by driving a contrast, starting Monday at campaign rallies in Colorado, between how he and Bill and Hillary Clinton made their fortunes.”

> Sycophants are us: Frank Bruni of The New York Times on the “Pathetic Fraternity” of yes men who surround Donald Trump, particularly the once-credible Chris Christie and Rudy Giuliani: “The campaign has shown me many things that I never thought I’d see … including the readiness of power-hungry men to trade dignity for relevance. … His campaign is like some Canyon Ranch for bullies needing revitalization.”

> The mean girls of Trump Tower: Maureen Dowd of The Times says this election has changed forever the way American view gender and elections: “Every minute of every day, Trump debunks that old ‘science’ when he shows that the gossipy, backbiting, scolding, mercurial, overly emotional, shrewish, menopausal one in this race is not the woman. Trump is surrounded by a bitchy sewing circle of overweight men who are overwrought at the prospect of a distaff Clinton presidency.”

WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT

Globe and Mail editorial board: “Choking off the supply of Canadian oil – which the lack of pipeline capacity has been doing for years – won’t reduce Canadians’ demand for oil, nor will it lower global demand. It will simply mean that our country will buy more of its oil from overseas.”

Rick Hansen (Globe and Mail): “As our nation prepares for a milestone anniversary that celebrates 150 years of proud achievements – I encourage all Canadians to become barrier busters and work together to make accessibility and inclusion an economic and cultural imperative for the Canada we all deserve.”

J.L. Granatstein (Globe and Mail): “Trolling for votes with our men and women in uniform as bait is uniquely unseemly for Canada, but what makes this even worse is that we don’t yet know which UN mission(s) we want to support.”

Penny Collenette (Toronto Star): “Here’s the thing that no one emphasizes when you enter politics — an adherence to rules will not be enough to steer you clear of moral minefields.”

Michael Den Tandt (National Post): “The Mother Corp. receives $1-billion annually in federal subsidy. Its funding is waxing, courtesy of the Trudeau government. It aggressively sells advertising – indeed, stomps with gigantic feet all over the national ad market, in competition with industry. How long, given these enormous structural advantages, until the CBC is the only game in town? And how healthy will that be for Canadian democracy, and taxpayers?”

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