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Ontario’s election outcome is more volatile than polls suggest

While the Ontario Progressive Conservatives and NDP appear tied ahead of tomorrow’s vote, Adam Radwanski writes a number of variables make the election more unpredictable than we think. Factors such as turnout, geography, vote-splitting, incumbency advantages and the Ford effect could produce wildly different results. “There is a decent prospect that the Tories will win the legislative majority that seemed theirs for the taking at the outset – and also that they won’t even win a minority, with the NDP pulling off a stunning victory. The Liberals, at risk of losing every single seat, could also take enough ridings to hold the balance of power. An array of variables, which no poll can fully capture, could determine what Ontarians wake up to on Friday morning.” (for subscribers)

If you’re looking for a spark of motivation to hit the ballot box tomorrow, Marcus Gee challenges seven common (and lame) excuses for not voting (for subscribers). For an in-depth dive, here’s our election guide.

Air Canada signs Air China joint venture, says it’s unrelated to Taipei relisting

A new joint venture between Air Canada and Air China comes weeks after the Canadian airline changed the way it refers to Taipei, labelling it as part of China, instead of Taiwan.

The deal, which will see the carriers sharing more than $1-billion in revenue on flights between Canada and China, is the first of its kind between a Chinese and North American airline. Air Canada chief executive Calin Rovinescu said Taipei’s re-categorization “totally had nothing to do with it at all, whatsoever. We’ve been working on this joint venture since 2014, and one’s got nothing to do with the other.”

Air Canada joins a growing list of air carriers bowing to Beijing’s pressure to designate Taiwan, a self-governing territory that Beijing considers a rogue state, as part of China. The democratically elected government of Taiwan is calling on the Canadian carrier to reverse the decision and correct it immediately.

J. Michael Cole writes kneeling to China sends a dangerous signal. “Beijing has exploited Ottawa’s desire to sign a free-trade agreement with the world’s second-largest economy, to compel it to look the other way whenever it has violated the beliefs and values that define us as Canadians.”

PM Justin Trudeau says gender equality will be top priority at G7 despite concerns about Trump

The Trudeau government plans to push for gender equality despite a G7 summit that may be full of tension between U.S. President Donald Trump and other leaders.

Mr. Trump’s recent decision to slap hefty tariffs on steel and aluminum imports looms large, but the leaders will discuss a new commitment to girls’ education. Women’s rights advocates are urging G7 countries to invest US$1.3-billion to close the education gap between boys and girls around the world. Canada also plans to prioritize climate change and the protection of oceans. Asked about the distraction Mr. Trump may pose at the G7 summit, World Vision Canada president Michael Messenger said it would be unfortunate if “discussion gridlock led to the poorest and most vulnerable once again being left behind.”

James Comey, former FBI director, warned the leaders yesterday not to trust Mr. Trump, saying “He has a craving for affirmation that I’ve never seen in an adult before.” He said Trump’s unethical behavior has eroded trust between world leaders, leading to a world that has become less secure.

The G7 leaders will meet in Charlevoix, Que., beginning on Friday.

Ottawa to hold 5G spectrum auctions by 2021, introduces new low-income internet program

To help keep Canada in step with global technology trends, Ottawa says it will hold three public auctions for spectrum, the airwaves used to build wireless networks, by 2021. Carriers around the world are beginning to build 5G (or fifth-generation) networks and need new spectrum to carry more data and support the new technology, which is expected to offer much faster speeds, shorter lag times and exponentially more connected devices.

Navdeep Bains, the federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, revealed plans for two previously unannounced auctions of the valuable airwaves on top of one already planned for next year.

He also announced that after a year of negotiations, the government has reached a voluntary agreement with the country’s largest internet providers to offer deeply discounted service to low-income families. Under the new program, dubbed “Connecting Families,” Rogers, Telus, BCE, Shaw, Videotron and SaskTel will offer home internet packages for $10 per month to families who receive the maximum Child Care Benefit.

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On Wall Street, the Dow jumped more than 340 points and the Nasdaq recorded its third straight record close as financial stocks gained and strong U.S. economic data countered trade uncertainty. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.4 per cent to 25,146.39, the S&P 500 gained 0.86 per cent to 2,772.34 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.67 per cent to 7,689.24.

Canada’s main stock index climbed higher as materials was the top sector contributor with Aurora Cannabis, Valeant Pharmaceuticals and First Quantum Minerals leading the way. The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX Composite Index rose 0.38 per cent to 16,183.93 points.

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If Ferrari didn’t know the difference between Montreal and Toronto before, it does now. The racing division of the Italian car company was ridiculed online after it tweeted about this weekend’s Formula One race in Montreal using an image of downtown Toronto. People responded to the tweet with images of Mercedes-Benz race cars under the Ferrari logo and other Internet memes making fun of the company.


Finally, a sign of national unity: racial profiling in policing

“Specifics do differ from city to city – while black and Indigenous people are most often targeted, those who police consider ‘brown’ show up in the stats for Toronto. Some places like to pick on ‘Arabs’ or ‘West Asians,‘ which I think means Muslims who look like the bad guys in Aladdin. But while individual shades may not match up exactly, the same picture can be seen from Medicine Hat to Ottawa to Halifax. When tasked with trying to keep communities safe, police forces across the country target those who aren’t white.” - Denise Balkissoon

Parents can financially suffocate their kids by helping them buy houses

“It’s every bit as important to see if the kids receiving the gift can afford home ownership. According to the people at Bridgeport Asset Management, they may not be able to. Housing wealth should be complemented with liquid investments, such as stocks, bonds and funds held in registered retirement savings plans or tax-free savings accounts. Those investments will be especially important to today’s young adults in retirement because of how frequently they work in contract jobs with no pension. ” Rob Carrick

What will Trudeau do with the skunk in the room – Donald Trump – at the G7?

“One of the only things G7 leaders will concur on with Mr. Trump is his push toward denuclearization in North Korea. No quick fix seems apparent. More likely, there will be protracted negotiations, which other presidents have unsuccessfully attempted. On other questions – on his tariffs, on his trashing the Iran nuclear accord, the Paris climate accord, on his fuelling of divisions, on his aversion to collective engagement – Mr. Trump will face a united front.” – Lawrence Martin

We must do better at protecting our athletes from abuse

“It is now time for action. The path forward is simple. Just as sport organizations must comply with a list of prerequisites to receive federal or provincial funding, it is time to add one more: putting in place an accredited safety program. It should be a program that ensures that all those dealing with our athletes have specific training and education regarding the multiple forms of abuse.” – Stephen Bronfman and France Chrétien Desmarais


Personal trainer Paul Landini’s goal with every person he trains is the same – he wants them to not need him at all. He’s whittled his teachings down to two essential tenets of strength training. No. 1: Linear progression : “Lifting, as in life, is all about forward progress. You should be doing more work tomorrow than you did today.” No. 2: Do your homework: A common mistake is thinking training is over when you leave the gym.” They spend no time reflecting on that day’s performance, no time reading blogs or listening to podcasts or watching tutorials.”


Two parents, three kids and a dog in a one-bedroom condo: ‘You just adapt’

Living in a small space doesn’t mean thinking small. Everything you need, Kelsey Barnes says, is right outside your doorstep. This mindset is one that Mr. Barnes and his family of five adopted early when they made the switch from a suburban, spacious home in Prince Edward County, to a 776-square-foot, one-bedroom condo in Toronto’s Distillery District. After downsizing, Jo Barnes said her family realized “how much you can live without.”

Red is the new orange: Will Sudbury’s voters forgive a Liberal MPP for crossing party lines?

Premiers and ministers and even prime ministers have done it successfully. There are dozens upon dozens of politicians who left one party for another and failed to pay the price their critics and doubters had predicted. Two years ago, Glenn Thibeault switched from NDP MP to Liberal MPP in a local by-election. Now, locals believe the New Democrats are out for revenge.

Evening Update is written by Amy O’Kruk and S.R. Slobodian. If you’d like to receive this newsletter by e-mail every weekday evening, go here to sign up. If you have any feedback, send us a note.

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