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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.

Manitoba’s Indigenous Relations and Northern Relations Minister has resigned from cabinet over comments from the province’s Premier on the colonization of Canada.

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CBC reports here on the exit of Eileen Clarke, first elected in 2016 and re-elected in 2019. According to her online member of the legislative assembly biography, Ms. Clarke was appointed minister of Indigenous and Municipal Relations in May, 2016, and is now listed as Minister of Indigenous and Northern Relations.

The Globe and Mail reached out to Ms. Clarke’s constituency office today for comment. The response was a statement saying Ms. Clarke would not respond to any media requests at the this time in respect of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs election today.

Premier Brian Pallister had said the colonization of Canada was well-intentioned.

In comments on July 7, he was responding to statues of Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth on the Manitoba legislature grounds being torn down by protesters on Canada Day.

Mr. Pallister said the statues, toppled in a demonstration over the deaths of Indigenous children in residential schools. would be replaced.

The Progressive Conservative Premier also said, “The people who came here to this country ... didn’t come here to destroy anything. They came here to build,” he said.

“They came to build better ... and they built farms, and they built businesses, and they built communities and churches, too.”

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There’s a story here on the Premier’s comments from The Globe and Mail.

Today, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs praised Ms. Clarke for her dedication to her work.

“While I am disappointed with her resignation, I understand the circumstance, and we commend her for this honourable decision in light of recent events,” Interim Grand Chief Leroy Constant said in a statement.

He noted that among the challenges in her work was a “tense First Nations’ relationship with the Premier.”

There’s a story here from The Globe and Mail.

TODAY’S HEADLINES

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PBO RULES OUT COSTING SNAP ELECTION PLATFORMS - The Office of the Parliamentary Budget Officer is warning political parties that it won’t be able to cost out all of their platform pledges if there is a snap election this year.

BANK OF CANADA ANNOUNCEMENT - The Bank of Canada raised its inflation projections and trimmed its government bond-buying program on Wednesday, noting that the economy is primed for rapid growth in the second half of the year led by a surge in consumer spending. Story here.

SENATE UNLIKELY TO RETURN - The window is closing on the possibility of the Senate being recalled to review and approve legislation that would effectively ban the practice of conversion therapy.

CANADA MUST IMPROVE PANDEMIC PREP: TRUDEAU - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau acknowledged on Tuesday that Canada must improve its pandemic preparedness, after an independent federal review called for changes to the way Ottawa gathers intelligence on health threats and assesses the risk of an outbreak.

NEW DATA ON PERMANENT RESIDENCY APPLICATIONS - The rejection rate for permanent residency applications on humanitarian and compassionate grounds has risen sharply over the past couple of years, according to recently released figures.

SWEARING-IN DATE FOR NEW GG - Mary Simon will be sworn in as Canada’s new Governor-General – the first Indigenous person to hold the office – on July 26.

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HARASSMENT IN MILITARY PRESENTS CHALLENGE FOR ARMED FORCES CHAPLAINS - The leader of Canada’s military chaplains says his members, who provide spiritual support to Armed Forces personnel, are finding themselves on both sides of the sexual harassment crisis in the Forces because they counsel both victims and offenders. Story here.

AVOID BEING HARDENED TO UNMARKED GRAVES: FORMER JUDGE - Canadians need to make sure they don’t become hardened to news about unmarked graves at residential schools after what’s believed to be another discovery of undocumented remains, this time at Penelakut Island, says a former judge. Story here. From the Times Colonist.

PRIME MINISTER'S DAY

In Percé, Quebec, the Prime Minister holds private meetings, and participates in a virtual roundtable discussion with community stakeholders from the Îles-de-la-Madeleine. In Gaspé, the Prime Minister tours the LM Wind Power Plant and makes an announcement, followed by a media availability.

LEADERS

Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet continues a summer tour with stops in the Quebec City region that include a meeting with the Grand Chief of the Huron-Wendat Nation, Rémy Vincent.

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NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh holds a news conference on a jobs plan in Windsor, tours the Essex County community support centre, and attends the Nickel Belt Federal NDP Nomination Meeting for Andréane Chénier.

PUBLIC OPINION

Just over half of Canadians believe the Liberals did a good job managing the pandemic, but they’re less favourable on the minority government’s handling of the economy, according to a new poll. Overall, the Nanos Research poll conducted for The Globe and Mail shows Canadians are twice as likely to support the government’s pandemic response than give it a failing grade. Details here.

OPINION

Andrew Coyne (The Globe and Mail) on why the Conservative temperament is putting off voters: On many of the most important issues of the day, Conservatives have either had nothing to say (hello, climate change) or have actively antagonized voters they might otherwise have reached (race, immigration, marriage equality). More broadly, the party seems to have lost its nerve, unable even to advance traditional conservative policies – free markets, lower taxes, balanced budgets – with any vigour. The left has been right about more things than the right in recent years, but right or wrong it has been demonstrably more confident. More confident and … more cheerful. Beyond leadership or policy, the Conservative malaise seems even more to do with what I might call the party’s temperament: not just its image but its persona, the deeper qualities of disposition that are revealing of character. Something in the Conservative temperament has simply become repellent to a great many people.”

John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on the old Cold War lessons worth considering as tensions rise with China: Managing a cold war, if that’s what it comes to, will require both courage and discretion: the courage to stand up to Chinese power; the discretion to realize that, despite that country’s wolf-warrior belligerence, there are areas in which the two sides can – indeed must – get along. “The international space is a messy place,” observed Michael Manulak, a professor of international relations at Carleton University in Ottawa. “We can voice our concerns about Chinese behaviour in a way that makes our disagreements clear. But at the same time, we also have interests to advance.”

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Shiri Pasternak (Contributor to The Globe and Mail) on who should pay when projects fail after Indigenous rights claims?: The constitution designates the provinces to authorize most development and resource extraction. If this authority and these land claims are disputed by Indigenous nations, the burden must fall on governments to exercise their power to resolve these issues or bear the consequences. This goes beyond legal duties to “consult and accommodate,” and must address the foundations of conflict around land in this country. But that does not mean that corporations bear no responsibility. If Indigenous peoples are disrupting the circuits of capital, this must be disclosed and factored into the company’s valuation and the viability of its projects. Insurance companies must also take note.

Tom Mulcair (Montreal Gazette) on whether anyone in Ottawa will stand up to Quebec Premier François Legault: “In the run-up to the election, the federal political parties have been falling over each other trying to be the first in line to kiss François Legault’s ring. That gives the province and its Premier an importance they haven’t had in a long time. Justin Trudeau’s Liberals still rule the roost in Greater Montreal, but the Bloc Québécois continues to nip at their heels. Bloc Leader Yves-François Blanchet has to play his own cards wisely because Legault is of two minds about seeing more separatists elected federally. Legault is very much aware that a resurgent Bloc would be able to provide support and resources to rival Parti Québécois in the next provincial election. At the same time, Legault’s stratospheric approval numbers probably give him enough confidence to continue to push for as great a vote split as possible, including more Bloc seats, with a view to impeding the Liberals from achieving their goal of regaining their majority.”

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