CANADIAN NEWS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced $650-million in spending on global sexual and reproductive health and rights. The funding is for a variety of programs and initiatives, including those focused on contraception, legal abortion and advocacy work. The Liberals also tabled Bill C-39, an act that would remove the anti-abortion provision in the Criminal Code.
Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould spoke highly of an oversight system for reviewing sex-assault cases at a conference in Gatineau. Her comments follow a Globe investigation that found that police forces across Canada dismiss 1 in 5 sexual assault claims as baseless. The Philadelphia model saw advocates take part in the review process along with officers and saw unfounded rates dramatically decrease.
338 seats, 338 women. On International Women’s Day, women filled each seat in the House of Commons for the first time in history as part of Daughters of the Vote. Representatives aged 18-23 came from every riding in the country and discussed topics ranging from Islamophobia to electoral reform.
A new report overseen by former parliamentary budget officer Kevin Page draws attention to Liberals’ deficit spending, and how young Canadians may pay the price. The report also highlights Ottawa’s budget for skills training and innovation and comes ahead of a federal budget expected to have a heavy emphasis on both issues.
In B.C., Premier Christy Clark said that long-awaited campaign finance reforms will not have limits on campaign donations. Currently, legislation limiting donations exists in six provinces and federally. Elections B.C. is currently probing fundraising practices following a Globe investigation that found lobbyists were breaking one of B.C.’s few political donation rules.
And Mr. Trudeau will speak at an energy conference in Houston today. New polling shows that two-thirds of Canadians want Canada to stick to its commitments from the Paris climate change agreement, regardless of what the U.S. does. The poll also showed that nearly half of Canadians support the building of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline.
U.S. NEWS YOU SHOULD KNOW
U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told Bloomberg that Canada will have to “make concessions” in NAFTA renegotiations, which he said will start later this year. Recent data also show that the U.S. trade deficit rose nearly 10 per cent in January, its highest level since 2012.
Groups representing doctors, nurses and hospitals came out against Republican legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare. Some health policy wonks have expressed concerns that the bill may cause the health insurance market to collapse. Meanwhile, U.S. President Donald Trump has been working to garner support for the bill behind closed doors.
On International Women’s Day, women across the U.S. participated in "A Day Without A Woman," a strike and protest intended to show the economic power that women hold.
And while battleground states remain a fixture of the American electoral process, counties have become increasingly polarized.
LUNCHTIME LONG READ
The robots are coming. But what lawmakers and businesses should do in response to the impending automation of the workforce remains an open-ended question. The New York Times explores “how to beat the robots.”
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail): “What a splendid job Justin Trudeau is doing in carrying out Stephen Harper’s foreign policy. Both men should be so proud.”
Lynda Gullason (The Globe and Mail): “Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a feminist. He has, after all, mandated Status of Women Canada to implement the adoption of gender-based analysis and ensure gender equity across the federal government. But the gender-based analysis initiative is predestined – perhaps even predesigned – to fail.”
David Parkinson (The Globe and Mail): “The hot streak in Canadian employment has gone large enough for long enough now that it cannot be dismissed as a blip. Adding nearly 240,000 jobs in six months of nearly uninterrupted growth will do that for you. But just how strong is this labour market?” (for subscribers)
Sheema Khan (The Globe and Mail): “This year is on track to becoming an annus horribilis for Canadian Muslims. The toxic anti-Muslim rhetoric south of the border has spread north, unvetted, through all firewalls.”
Andrew Coyne (National Post): “The movement of women and baby boomers into the workforce over the last few decades caused enormous upheaval in Canada’s labour market, but no one suggested some sort of “pause” was in order. Only with immigrants do we feel entitled to impose such restrictions. Plainly we view immigrants as not possessing the same rights as ourselves — not even the right to join our midst.”
Ben Shapiro (National Review): “Here’s a suggestion. Instead of treating Trump’s rhetoric seriously, wouldn’t America be better off if we did ignore it? ”
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Written by Mayaz Alam.
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