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The convoy protest that took over main arteries of downtown Ottawa this winter represented an unprecedented national security crisis and a major shift in the way that demonstrations are organized, funded, executed and responded to in Canada, former Ottawa Police chief Peter Sloly said Thursday.

Mr. Sloly appeared before the House of Commons procedure and house affairs committee as part of its study on expanding federal jurisdiction for security of the parliamentary precinct to include sections of Wellington Street and Sparks Street in downtown Ottawa. During his appearance, Mr. Sloly said there were factors that underpinned the national security crisis including social media, disinformation campaigns, societal polarization, ideological extremism and reduced public trust in democratic institutions.

Parliamentary Reporter Kristy Kirkup reports here.

ALSO: Residents of Canada’s most populous province are voting today in the provincial election. Check here for live Globe and Mail updates on the Ontario election. There are details here on how to vote. And the latest edition of Vote of Confidence, The Globe’s Ontario election newsletter is here.

This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Ian Bailey. 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.


IT’S THE QUEEN’S PLATINUM JUBILEE - Europe correspondent Paul Waldie writes here about what to expect during the four-day June celebration of Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee, celebrating the monarch’s 70 years on the throne.

MORNEAU DENOUNCES LIBERAL POLICIES - Former finance minister Bill Morneau has delivered a pointed critique of the federal Liberals’ economic policies, along with a series of recommendations for kickstarting growth, in his first public speech since leaving political life two years ago. Story here.

DISABILITY BENEFIT BILL REINTRODUCED - The federal government, on Thursday, reintroduced legislation to create a monthly benefit payment for working-age Canadians with disabilities. Story here from CBC.

MENDICINO CALLS FOR DEPUTY INDIGENOUS CORRECTIONS COMMISSIONER - The creation of a deputy commissioner of Indigenous corrections is long overdue, says Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino, who has ordered Correctional Service Canada to establish the position amid systemic racism and high incarceration rates of Indigenous people in federal prisons. Story here.

LOEWEN ENTERS LEADERSHIP RACE - The first United Conservative backbencher to publicly call for Premier Jason Kenney to quit says he is running to replace him. Story here.

HERITAGE COMMITTEE CONCLUDING HEARINGS ON STREAMING LEGISLATION - Members of Parliament on the Canadian heritage committee are wrapping up hearings this week on the government’s online streaming legislation, a bill that is generating a deeply polarized reaction from policy experts. Story here.

CAQ A NATIONALIST PARTY IN CANADA: LEGAULT - Premier François declared Thursday that his Coalition Avenir Québec government stands for Quebec within Canada, and is a nationalist party within Canada. He added, “There is no appetite (for a referendum).” Story here from The Montreal Gazette.

GOVERNMENT BACKS SENATE BILL ON IDENTIFYING FORCED LABOUR ON SUPPLY CHAINS - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals have thrown their support behind a Senate bill requiring government and businesses to annually report on steps they have taken to identify forced labour in their supply chains. Story here.

CONVICTION IN CONFINEMENT CASE WHERE LIBERAL MP VICTIM - An Ottawa man has been convicted of unlawfully confining Liberal MP Anita Vandenbeld (Ottawa West-Nepean), in a 2020 incident. Story here from The Ottawa Citizen.


CAMPAIGN TRAIL - Scott Aitchison is in Manitoba. Jean Charest is in Montreal. Leslyn Lewis is campaigning on Prince Edward Island, with an event in Summerside. Pierre Poilievre is in Ottawa. (He announced Thursday he is tabling a private members bill to stop the federal government from requiring COVID-19 vaccination as a condition of employment for public servants, and to allow Canadians to travel regardless of their vaccination status.) There’s no information on the campaign whereabouts of Roman Baber and Patrick Brown.


TODAY IN THE COMMONS – Projected Order of Business at the House of Commons, June. 2, accessible here.

FREELAND IN WASHINGTON - In Washingtion, Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland was scheduled to meet with U.S. Treasury Secretary, Janet Yellen as well as Brian Deese, director of the U.S. National Economic Council - a key forum used by the U.S. president to consider economic policy. Ms. Freeland is also attending the 68th Bilderberg Meeting.

UKRAINIAN WITNESSES BEFORE SENATE COMMITTEE - A member of the Ukrainian parliament and two representatives of the Embassy of the Ukraine to Canada testified Thursday before the Senate foreign affairs and international trade standing committee. Details here.

BQ MP TESTS POSITIVE FOR COVID-19 - Bloc Québécois MP René Villemure, who represents the riding of Trois-Rivières, has tested positive for COVID-19, and is isolating at home.

GG HEADED FOR LONDON - Governor-General Mary Simon and her husband Whit Fraser are travelling to London on Thursday to participate in celebrations of Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations, and staying through June. 6. According to a statement, the visit will provide the Governor-General an opportunity to meet with governors-general from across the Commonwealth.

ANNUAL MUNICIPALITIES CONFERENCE UNDERWAY - The Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ annual conference is underway in Regina, with mayors, councillors and municipal representatives gathering onsite or online through June. 5. Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Dominic LeBlanc delivers a keynote address on Friday, followed by Conservative infrastructure critic Andrew Scheer. Federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh speaks on Saturday.

IN DEFENCE OF CABINET MINISTERS AND PUBLIC SERVANTS - Acclaimed academic and author Donald Savoie is standing up for cabinet ministers, public servants and government, in general, in his new book.

Government: Have Presidents and Prime Ministers Misdiagnosed the Patient (McGill-Queen’s University Press) studies the United States, Great Britain, France and Canada to make the case that cabinet government has been diminished, and public servants marginalized by political leaders. It has, says Mr. Savoie, led to declining trust in government.

Mr. Savoie, who holds the Canada Research Chair in public administration and governance at the Université de Moncton, talked, in a recent interview, about his conclusions. Some key points:

ON PIERRE POILIEVRE’S CALL TO FIRE THE GOVERNOR OF THE BANK OF CANADA: “The Bank of Canada is a proper institution. It has norms. It has values. You don’t play fast and loose with these institutions. I don’t think it’s wise to belittle it. I don’t think it’s wise to throw rocks at it. I think if you have some concerns with the Bank of Canada, you raise it in a very serious fashion.”

THE MARGINALIZATION OF CABINET MINISTERS? : “I think it’s not just the Prime Minister’s fault. I think it’s the way we structure government these days, the way we expect quick decisions. We expect prime ministers to be in control of their government. Cabinet government is a long process. And if you want to get quick answers, you don’t have time to go through the government process. The Prime Minister and his advisers will deal with these issues.”

IN DEFENCE OF PUBLIC SERVANTS: ”The whole point of my book is to not debase the public service. You can raise fundamental questions about its size, its ability to be non-partisan, all kinds of fundamental questions can be raised. And we need to raise these issues. Debasing the public service, bureaucratic bashing has gone on long enough. It has hurt the public service. When you hurt the public service, you hurt government. When you hurt government, you hurt Canada. It’s time to ask some fundamental questions about how we improve the public service, not by bureaucratic bashing.”

FIXING THE SITUATON: ”There’s only one person who can have a wrench of the wheel to turn it around. It’s the prime minister. We need a prime minister to say government needs to be fixed. There’s nobody else who can turn it around.”

WOULD HE ADVISE SOMEONE TO APPLY TO BECOME A PUBLIC SERVANT: “I’ve been asked that very question by students, and I strongly encourage them to join the public service. If you want to do something bigger than you, larger than you, the federal public service is the answer. That having been said, I warn students the federal public service now is only for the brave. It’s going to be tough. You’re only going to hear bureaucracy bashing. You’re going to hear family members taking shots: ‘Oh, you’re a bureaucrat, fat cat.’ Ignore that. Go and try to fix the public service because it’s fundamental to Canada, and if you love Canada go make a contribution.”

NEXT BOOK: “I’m working on a manuscript that’s very, very, very provocative; probably the most provocative book I have ever written. It’s looking at how Canadians view themselves as victims and what does it mean for Canada ...nWe’ll need to see if a publisher is brave enough to publish it because it’s quite provocative.”

This interview has been edited for clarity and length.

ANAND IN QUEBEC - Defence Minister Anita Anand is visiting 2nd Canadian Division Support Base Valcartier in Quebec, meeting with members of the Armed Forces who have returned home after deploying on Operation REASSURANCE – Canada’s support to NATO’s assurance and deterrence measures in Central and Eastern Europe. Later in the day, she will be joined by Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly and visiting foreign affairs minister from Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia.


On Thursday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, The Globe’s Robyn Doolittle , who has reported on sexual violence and gender discrimination since 2015, and Nicole Bedera, a sociologist who researches sexual violence and how it relates to our society and culture, talk about the outcome of actor Johnny Depp’s defamation case against his ex-wife, Amber Heard. The Decibel is here.


In Siksika, Alberta, the Prime Minister held private meetings and participated in a signing ceremony with Siksika Nation Nioksskaistamik Chief Ouray Crowfoot,


No schedules released for party leaders.


Tanya Talaga (The Globe and Mail) on how now is the time for truth telling, not denial, about surviving residential schools: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this statement, after an awful revelation of Canada’s colonial treatment of Indigenous people: “It all happened in the past. Canada shouldn’t be held accountable for what happened then.” I’ve heard it uttered at dinner tables or in casual conversation, by people you’d think would be more empathetic, knowledgeable or would simply know better. That person had “no idea” that 150,000 First Nations, Metis and Inuit children were removed from their families and put in schools aimed at turning them into white-washed, “good” Canadian citizens with no trace of who they are.”

Robyn Urback (The Globe and Mail) on Canada’s intractable gun-crime issue: Our geographic neighbour: The unfortunate reality of Canada’s gun crime problem, one that has gone largely unacknowledged (at least by government), is that we will forever be vulnerable by virtue of our geography. Guns are being smuggled in from the U.S. by cars, trucks, even drones – and that’s something that tweaking the Firearms Act is never going to address. Canada could ban all guns tomorrow, making it so that not a single person in this country could legally possess a firearm, and yet we’d still be more vulnerable than, say, the U.K., because the Brits don’t share a border with a country with more guns than people, and you can’t fly a drone from Michigan to Lancashire.”

Don Braid (The Calgary Herald) on the UCP erupting again over Premier Jason Kenney’s claims about anti-vaxxers: “Many UCP politicians and activists are furious at Premier Jason Kenney for blaming his forced exit on anti-vaccine militants. “Why is this guy still allowed in front of a microphone, saying things like this?” says one prominent UCP MLA, who asks not to be named. “It’s frustrating and divisive and not reflective of where Alberta is going as a whole. It’s time to move on.” The party critics say Kenney is refusing to admit his own failings, which they consider a far larger factor in the party rebellion than anti-vaccine sentiment.”

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