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People shelter from the rain beneath an umbrella as they leave a polling station set up inside a sports club cafe in Croydon, south of London, on June 23, 2016, as Britain holds a referendum to vote on whether to remain in, or to leave the European Union (EU).BEN STANSALL/AFP / Getty Images

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Today the people of the United Kingdom are faced with a question: "Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?" The results of today's referendum has so far shaped up to be too close to call, with many prominent voices on either side of the debate. We've explained here everything you need to know about the background of the referendum, and if you're watching the results roll in, here's a handy guide to follow along. (for subscribers) Polls close at around 5 p.m. ET.


> The federal government will tentatively lift visa restrictions on Mexican travellers as of Dec. 1, sources say, but will be ready to reimpose the conditions if there is a spike of people from Mexico seeking refuge in Canada. The Liberal cabinet overruled bureaucrats who recommended against the change, sources said.

> The federal government has finally released more details on how the Canada Pension Plan will work, but experts are questioning the rush to close the deal in only a few weeks. Small businesses, meanwhile, say the higher CPP premiums will cut into their bottom lines and that the Liberals should go ahead with the tax reduction they promised in the last election. (for subscribers)

> The western chorus frog has triggered a spat between the federal and Quebec government, after the Liberals in Ottawa blocked construction near Montreal to save the endangered amphibian – against the wishes of the province. Separately, the federal government added eight new names to its list of species at risk.

> Nine Liberal MPs have joined together to create an indigenous caucus.

> Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he is proud of the work his wife, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, is doing, but that he doesn't expect all future prime ministerial spouses to be as active.

> Alberta Progressive Conservative MLA Sandra Jansen says she will quit if Jason Kenney becomes leader of her party.

> And just when you thought you were out, they drag you back in: Senator Mike Duffy's expenses are once again being questioned.


Campbell Clark (Globe and Mail): "The Liberals' magic formula was supposed to be both parts of their economic agenda: not just a slightly better take-home income, but growth policies to make the whole country more prosperous. Mr. Trudeau's campaign evoked the notion of building cranes in the skyline courtesy of an infrastructure boom, innovation incentives for the new-economy opportunity and oil piped to market with responsible environmental policies. So far, he has succeeded on one side: He's ticked off the promises on redistribution, not growth; for individuals, not business." (for subscribers)

Jeffrey Simpson (Globe and Mail): "When two crises washed over the EU, the institution struggled to respond, and that struggle further soured British opinion. The first was the made-in-America financial crisis; the second was the mass migration from failed states and economic basket cases from Bangladesh to Algeria. Neither of these were the EU's fault and no easy answers presented themselves for these two nasty crises. Moreover, the British perception of being overrun by migration – a perception fuelling a desire to leave the EU – had much more to do with Britain's colonial past and domestic immigration policies than EU membership." (for subscribers)

Patrice Dutil (Globe and Mail): "The Canadian electoral system functions on law, but also on a system of conventions – understandings based on precedents, a recognition that strong public support clearly expressed in referenda is essential before any changes are made, and an obvious understanding of how a Westminster-style parliamentary system works to deliver effective government. To change that, past governments have agreed that the question must be put to a referendum."

Andrew Coyne (National Post): "What remains in doubt [about the CPP expansion] is the rationale for it. The plan has been sold as necessary to address a crisis in pensions, as a way of helping people to save who were presently under-saving, and as a major boost to retirement incomes. But for most people it is none of those things."

Chantal Hébert (Toronto Star): "As the long campaign to select a successor to Harper slowly gets underway, most Conservative MPs are keeping their cards close to their chests. They want to see the full line-up before they commit to a camp. But [Jacques] Gourde has already made his choice. He is the co-chair of Maxime Bernier's leadership campaign and more of a catch than appearances or titles would suggest."

Editor's note: The Globe Politics newsletter is going on hiatus for the summer. After June 30, the newsletter will not be sent in the mornings until after Labour Day. Let us know what you think.