Skip to main content
politics briefing newsletter

Hello,

The China-U.S. trade war escalated last week with the raising of tariffs on both sides, but United States President Donald Trump said the two countries are going to head back to the negotiating table soon to improve their trade relationship.

“[Chinese President Xi Jinping] understands, and it’s going to be great for China, it’s going to be great for the U.S., it’s going to be great for the world,” Mr. Trump said.

He also said he hoped to improve relations with Iran, a year after his administration pulled the United States out of a nuclear deal with Iran and reimposed sanctions on the Middle East country. “And we’re looking to make Iran rich again, let them be rich, let them do well,” he said.

Mr. Trump spoke on the sidelines of the Group of 7 leaders’ summit in France. He and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met for a one-on-one yesterday, which appeared to go much better than last year’s meeting in Quebec.

Mr. Trudeau is in G7 meetings all day and returns to Ottawa tonight.

This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Chris Hannay. 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.

TODAY’S HEADLINES

In June, Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said a Liberal government would not raise the carbon tax beyond $50 a tonne in 2022. Now Ms. McKenna says the government would review the rate with provinces in the future. The Parliamentary Budget Office estimated this summer that the tax would have to rise in order to meet the federal government’s emission-reduction goals.

The federal government is ramping up its spending to attract foreign students from a number of countries, including Mexico and Brazil, in a bid to diversify where international attendees of Canadian universities are coming from. At the moment, more than half of international students come from just two countries – China and India – and those numbers could be threatened if something changes in their diplomatic relations with Canada. That happened recently when Saudi Arabia recalled hundreds of students as part of a diplomatic spat with Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister.

The Liberals have unveiled their campaign slogan for the fall: Choose Forward.

Employees and executives in Hong Kong’s financial industry have lost their jobs because of participation in the pro-democracy protests. ““If I was a foreigner with a company that does business with China, I would right away warn my employees from participating in related activities or talking about it," economist Mei Xinyu told The Globe’s Nathan Vanderklippe.

And residents of the state of Virginia are marking 400 years since slaves were first brought from Africa to the British colonies that became the United States. “It’s understanding how strong our people, our ancestors were to be able to survive,” said Walter Jones, who, with relatives, has worked to uncover unmarked graves in the area. “We truly had a lot to do with building the country.”

Outgoing U.S. ambassador Kelly Craft (The Globe and Mail) on the Canada-U.S. relationship: “The United States and Canada have also brought the full weight of our relationship to bear on the world stage at a time when commitments to freedom are increasingly under attack. We have maintained international pressure on North Korea, galvanized support to return democracy to Venezuela and addressed China’s harmful actions, including the arbitrary detention and arrest of two Canadian citizens. The United States continues to call on the Chinese government to release the two men, and will stand with Canada until their freedom is restored.”

John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on the Conservatives and LGBTQ voters: “The Conservative coalition consists of social conservatives, who oppose abortion and LGBTQ rights; foreign policy conservatives; pro-West, don’t care about the rest conservatives; and fiscal conservatives, who favour balanced budgets, low taxes and minimal regulation. Fiscal conservativism dominates Mr. Scheer’s agenda. Social conservatism plays no meaningful role.”

Eric Reguly (The Globe and Mail) on the G7 pressure on Brazil over the Amazon forest fires: “[French President Emmanuel] Macron and Mr. Trudeau are gaining allies as the Amazon burns. Finland, which holds the European Union’s rotating presidency, has suggested banning Brazilian beef imports. Ireland, along with France, threatened to veto the EU’s trade deal with the Mercosur countries of Latin America, led by Brazil, unless Brazil works hard to douse the Amazon flames (German Chancellor Angela Merkel refused to support this option).”

Andrew Coyne (National Post) on the economy: “For make no mistake, the recession, if it comes, will have Donald Trump’s stubby fingerprints all over it. There may be, as Adam Smith said, a “great deal of ruin” in a nation, but confidence cannot long be sustained in the face of a really determined attempt by those in power to undermine it. And nothing is better calculated to unnerve investors than the sense that the man at the helm of the world economy is on a suicide mission. If only this were just a metaphor.”

Elizabeth Renzetti (The Globe and Mail) on the new nuclear arms race: “The United States, China and Russia are in a kind of absurd no-winner footrace to develop hypersonic weapons, and even more absurdly some policy-makers in the U.S. are upsetting long-time doctrine by advocating for low-yield, supposedly more ‘useable’ missiles. North Korea continues to taunt with its ballistic missile tests. Meanwhile, the nuclear-armed states of India and Pakistan are in conflict over Kashmir, and issuing threats to each other via The New York Times. We live in a world obsessed with choking hazards, and blithely oblivious to threat of mass extinction.”

Paul Adams (Policy Options) on political polls: “However, evidence suggests polls usually provide a broadly accurate picture of the electorate, even if it’s not always quite as sharply focused as we would like. In fact, despite all the changes in methodology over the last two decades and the difficulties of reaching some parts of the population—the landline-less young and the internet-challenged old, for example — the evidence suggests polls are about as accurate now as they ever were. (And yes, pollsters do contact cellphones!)”

Got a news tip that you’d like us to look into? E-mail us at tips@globeandmail.com. Need to share documents securely? Reach out via SecureDrop

Follow related authors and topics

Authors and topics you follow will be added to your personal news feed in Following.

Interact with The Globe