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politics briefing newsletter


This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Ian Bailey. Menaka Raman-Wilms is filling in today. It is available exclusively to our digital subscribers. If you’re reading this on the web, subscribers can sign up for the Politics newsletter and more than 20 others on our newsletter signup page. Have any feedback? Let us know what you think.

As the second week of the campaign gets underway, the Liberals are facing questions for content posted on Twitter over the weekend.

A video on the Twitter account of prominent Liberal candidate Chrystia Freeland was flagged by the platform on Sunday as manipulated media and is now the subject of a request for an investigation.

Legal counsel for the federal Conservatives has written to Elections Canada to ask for an investigation into the video, which features edited clips of Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole speaking about health care when he was running for the leadership last July.

In the video, Mr. O’Toole answers “yes” when asked if he would allow provinces to experiment with health care reform including private “for-profit” options. He then talks about “public-private synergies,” but the edited video doesn’t include his remarks about ensuring that “universal access remains paramount.”

In an email statement, Twitter Canada said it put that label on the video “in line with our global synthetic and manipulated policy.” The company’s online policy says that the label is placed on certain tweets, “to help people understand their authenticity and to provide additional context.”

Tweets that are labeled manipulated media have limited visibility and are not recommended by the platform’s algorithm.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau was asked about the incident on the campaign trail on Monday. “What’s really important here is that in the middle of a pandemic, Erin O’Toole came out unequivocally in support of private health care, in terms of for-profit health care,” he said.

Erin O’Toole was also asked about the video. “I 100 per cent support our public and universal health care system,” he said, and added that the Liberals are “importing American-style misleading politics.”

This isn’t the first time during this campaign that Twitter has taken issue with political content – last week Twitter removed a post from the Conservatives that featured Trudeau’s face superimposed on a character from the film Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, citing copyright concerns.

With files from Laura Stone and Kristy Kirkup.


SPECIAL FORCES MAY BE USED TO RESCUE AFGHAN INTERPRETERS - Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said that Canadian special forces have been given the “flexibility” to rescue Canadians, Afghan interpreters and support staff, which could include bringing them into the Kabul airport and getting them onto flights.

CANADA WILL SUPPORT G7 SANCTIONS AGAINST THE TALIBAN - When the G7 meets virtually on Tuesday to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada will push other countries to consider new sanctions against the Taliban.

O’TOOLE PROMISES MORE REHAB SPACES - To help combat the opioid crisis, Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole said his government would have a $1.3-billion strategy that would focus on helping people recover from addiction.

BLOC QUEBECOIS UNVEILS ELECTION PLATFORM - On Sunday, the party outlined its plans to boost health care funding and create a “green equalization” program to help fight climate change as part of its 2021 election platform. From CBC Montreal.

SINGH WOULD END OIL, GAS SUBSIDIES - In an announcement on Monday, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said an NDP government would redirect subsidies given to oil and gas companies toward renewable energy instead.

MAVERICK PARTY HOPES TO MAKE HEADWAY IN ALBERTA - The Maverick Party was just granted registered-party status last week, and its biggest hurdle this election, according to the party leader, is getting exposure.


Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-François Blanchet was in Trois-Rivières this morning speaking about ethics in politics. He’s later scheduled to be in Montreal, where he’ll address wage subsidies.

Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole is in Ottawa today, where he made an announcement this morning about supporting workers. He’s then scheduled to hold two virtual telephone town halls: one for Ontario and another for Manitoba.

Green Party Leader Annamie Paul is campaigning in the south part of the Toronto-Centre riding Monday afternoon, where she will speak about the culture of federal politics. Later she’s scheduled to canvass with Green Party of Ontario Leader Mike Schreiner.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh was in Montreal this morning where he spoke about climate change and oil subsidies. In the afternoon he’s scheduled to visit local businesses.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is spending the day in Atlantic Canada. He was in Halifax this morning speaking about health care and will travel to St. John’s later in the afternoon.


The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on why the Conservative climate plan isn’t half bad, but the Liberal plan is better:The Conservative climate plan is an improvement from two years ago. But even if everything about it were to be executed perfectly, the results would still fall short of the Liberal plan.”

Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on why the election campaign is shaping up to be shapeless – and that should scare Justin Trudeau:Mr. Trudeau’s answers to the big “why” question are still rambling discussions of all things Liberal, from child care to climate change to vaccine, having Canadians’ backs and choosing forward rather than backward.”

David Parkinson (The Globe and Mail) on how if politicians want to help in the inflation fight, get out of Bank of Canada’s way:Let’s have a substantive conversation on what the next government can do, with the fiscal powers in its hands, to aid the central bank’s inflation cause, now and over the next several years. Then we might be getting somewhere.”

David Shribman (contributor to The Globe and Mail) on how after Biden’s very, very bad week, the crises just keep on coming: “Every president faces economic challenges, questions about America’s role in overseas matters, rebellions on Capitol Hill, static or falling approval ratings and domestic upheaval. Few, however, face them all at once, especially in their inaugural year.”

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