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Hello,

In times like these it can be hard to find good-news stories, but here is one today: General Motors and Unifor announced plans to reopen a vehicle-assembly plant in Oshawa, Ont., that closed last year.

Jerry Dias, the national president of Unifor, said the plant should employ between 2,000 and 2,500 when it is up and running again in early 2022.

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The GM plant will return to making pick-ups, although other recent announcements in the industry have focused on building electric or hybrid cars in Ontario with funding from the federal and provincial government.

Flavio Volpe, head of the Automotive Parts Manufacturer’s Association, credited the recent announcements to new tariffs levels in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada agreement that encouraged more parts to be sourced locally.

The deal still needs to be ratified by GM workers.

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

The counting of U.S. election votes continues today. Joe Biden has won Michigan and Wisconsin, putting him within striking distance of the 270 electoral college votes needed to secure the presidency. Counting continues in Nevada and Arizona, where Mr. Biden leads, in North Carolina, where Donald Trump leads, and in Pennsylvania and Georgia, which are essentially toss-ups. Turnout is estimated to be close to 70 per cent, which would be the highest in more than a century. Republicans will probably retain control of the Senate, unless Democrats pull off upsets in runoffs for two Georgia seats.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is supposed to speak with French President Emmanuel Macron today, following Mr. Macron’s call with the Quebec Premier and a little dust-up over some comments Mr. Trudeau made about freedom of expression.

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Opposition parties agreed to fast-track a Liberal bill to improve the federal rent-relief program for struggling small businesses. The legislation, introduced on Monday, is set to pass in the House on Friday.

The federal government has missed its own target for providing 6,000 COVID-19 tests a day for provinces that needed extra surge capacity. But public-health experts who spoke to The Globe say even that amount is an “order of magnitude” lower than what the provinces actually need.

Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said the Liberals remain committed to their climate goals, such as the 2030 emission-reduction targets and planting two billion trees, even though no public progress has been made or legislation tabled on those files. When asked by an opposition MP why election promises had not been kept, Mr. Wilkinson replied: “With due respect, I think the fact that it was actually in the Throne Speech is a measure of the commitment that this government has.”

The federal government has officially launched the system to provide redress to Canadians who find their names incorrectly on the no-fly list.

Nunavut Senator Dennis Patterson and a major service provider say that thousands of the territory’s residents are at risk of losing Internet access because of a lack of government funding. “This cliff was known to be coming," Mr. Patterson told The Globe. "This is the result of neglect and a failure to respond to expressed needs months ago.”

And the RCMP has cancelled an $18,600 contract for janitorial services after discovering that the person who won the contract was a detachment employee responsible for processing payments for janitorial services.

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Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on Justin Trudeau’s silence on the U.S. election: “That’s not only forgivable, it’s also wise. A Canadian prime minister doesn’t need to stick his head into the wood-chipper of angry partisan jockeying in the postelection United States. It’s a good time for the PM to say nothing that anyone in the United States will notice.”

Kate Taylor (The Globe and Mail) on the Liberal bill to regulate online streamers: “Nonetheless, the changes should finally start to drag the free-riding services, which raise millions in revenue in Canada but, for the most part, don’t collect GST on subscribers' bills and don’t pay corporate taxes in Canada, into a broadcasting system based on the simple notion that those who benefit from access to public airwaves or digital space should contribute to local production.”

Monica Paraghamian (Montreal Gazette) on the experience of teaching in the pandemic: “My experiences from the start of September have led me to believe that the provincial government’s focus on health protocols in schools is creating aseptic atmospheres wherein students', teachers' and administrators' social and emotional well-being is neglected.”

Colby Cosh (National Post) on ballot measures that passed in many states to loosen drug criminalization: “The recent track record of legalization and decriminalization ballot measures is one of assured, Gretzky-like dominance. The citizen’s right to be left alone by the authorities is a vote-winner everywhere. One rather wishes it weren’t just drug debates that were presented to the public with this framing, in a world experiencing an arms race between economic regimentation and various moral or nationalistic kinds.”

Omar El Akkad (The Globe and Mail) on the Republican Party: “One of the defining characteristics of the modern Republican Party, perfected during Barack Obama’s presidency and employed ceaselessly over the past four years, is its ability to shield rank hypocrisy behind a veneer of good-faith concern. When a Supreme Court seat opened up during Mr. Obama’s last year in office, a parade of GOP lawmakers decried any move to fill it as unacceptable, an end-run around the will of the people. When an even more egregious facsimile of the same situation presented itself this year, but with a Republican in the Oval Office, most of the very same lawmakers suddenly found it outrageous to even consider waiting until after the election. As a result, the Supreme Court is now likely to lean conservative for generations.”

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

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