National political leaders are weighing in on the deaths of two Edmonton police officers, shot to death while responding to a domestic dispute early Thursday.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that police officers put themselves in harm’s way every day to keep people safe.
“The news that two [Edmonton Police officers] have been killed in the line of duty reminds us of that reality. I’m sending my condolences to the officers’ loved ones and colleagues – we’re here for you,” Mr. Trudeau said in a tweet.
The slain officers, both constables, have been identified as 35-year-old Travis Jordan, who served 8-1/2 years with the Edmonton department, and 30-year-old Brett Ryan, a member of the service for 5-1/2 years.
Federal Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre also offered his condolences.
“We mourn with the families and colleagues of two police officers killed in the line of duty in Edmonton this morning. Never take for granted that our law enforcement put their lives on the line every single day to keep our communities safe,” said a tweet posted by the Official Opposition leader.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh sent his “deepest condolences” to the loved ones of the deceased officers and their colleagues on the Edmonton force.
Calgary reporter Alanna Smith and Edmonton reporter Jana G. Pruden report here.
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CHINA’S VANCOUVER CONSULATE INTERFERED IN 2022 MUNICIPAL ELECTION: CSIS – China’s diplomatic mission in Vancouver has actively interfered in the city’s politics, using proxies in diaspora community organizations and grooming politicians to run in last fall’s municipal election, according to Canada’s spy agency. Story here. Meanwhile, former governor-general David Johnston has been named as the federal government’s pick to oversee an investigation of the Chinese government’s interference in Canadian elections. Story here. There’s a timeline here of China’s alleged interference in recent Canadian elections.
FORTIN SUING GOVERNMENT – Major-General Dany Fortin, a senior military officer who was acquitted of a sexual-assault charge late last year, has filed a $6-million lawsuit against the Canadian government. Story here.
POILIEVRE SAYS HE WOULD EXPAND SEAL HUNT – Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre says he would expand Canada’s seal hunt if he becomes prime minister, provoking condemnation from animal-welfare groups in Canada, the U.S. and Britain, as well as from singer-songwriter Jann Arden and former Baywatch star Pamela Anderson. Story here.
ABORTION VIEWS LED TO DISQUALIFICATION OF TORY NOMINATION CANDIDATE: SUPPORTERS – An anti-abortion group is claiming a candidate running for the federal Conservative nomination in an Ontario riding was disqualified by the party because of his views on abortion. Story here from CBC.
PRIVATE DELIVERY OF N.B. ABORTION SERVICES PROMPTS FEDERAL CLAWBACK – The federal government is clawing back money from health transfers in an attempt to force New Brunswick to make publicly funded abortion services more accessible. Story here.
SPECIAL CEREMONY PLANNED IN CANADA TO MARK KING’S CORONATION – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada will hold a special ceremony marking the coronation of King Charles on May 6. Story here.
LEGAULT VISITS SITE OF PICKUP ATTACK – Quebec Premier François Legault is visiting the eastern Quebec town where a pickup truck plowed into pedestrians, killing two. Story here.
ZUCKERBERG SOUGHT AS COMMITTEE WITNESS – Liberal MPs want to summon Mark Zuckerberg, the head of Meta, to testify before a Commons committee over its plans to block Canadians’ ability to view and share news on Facebook if Ottawa’s online news bill becomes law. Story here.
THIS AND THAT
ON A BREAK – Both Parliament and the Senate are on breaks, with the House of Commons sitting again on March 20 and the Senate sitting again on March 21.
DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER’S DAY – Chrystia Freeland, also Finance Minister, in Toronto held private meetings and joined Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for a NAFTA Advisory Council meeting, along with International Trade Minister Mary Ng.
MINISTERS ON THE ROAD – Transport Minister Omar Alghabra and Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, in North Vancouver, made an announcement on the Oceans Protection Plan funding in support of the Marine Training Program. Tourism Minister Randy Boissonnault, in Regina, on behalf of Dan Vandal, minister for Prairies Economic Development Canada, announced $5.8-million in funding for 14 Saskatchewan tourism operators to create or enhance tourism experiences across Saskatchewan. Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault, in Iqaluit, announced policy on the protection and conservation of caribou in Nunavut at a news conference with Nunavut Environment and Justice Minister David Akeeagok. Rural Economic Development Minister Gudie Hutchings, in Saskatoon, announced investments in Saskatchewan projects that will benefit communities, grow businesses and create jobs. Seniors Minister Kamal Khera, on behalf of Mental Health Minister Carolyn Bennett, in Mississauga, announced $1-million in funding to support mental health support for youth in Peel Region’s South Asian communities. Later, Ms. Khera, on behalf of Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos, in Toronto, announced funding for the care needs of older adults living with dementia and other forms of cognitive impairment. Canadian Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez, on behalf of Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne, in Kirkland, Que., announced investments to expand Canada’s domestic production and supply of vaccines and treatments.
PRIME MINISTER’S DAY
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in the Toronto area, convened a NAFTA Advisory Council meeting, and was scheduled to participate in a town-hall meeting with firefighters hosted by the International Association of Fire Fighters.
Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet, in Ottawa, held a news conference at the House of Commons.
Federal Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre, in Victoria, was scheduled to hold a meet-and-greet event.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, in Toronto, was scheduled to speak to a nursing class at York University then speak to journalists.
No schedules provided for other leaders.
On Thursday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, Report on Business columnist Tim Kiladze explains the fallout of the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and what Canadian regulations are in place to try and contain it. The Decibel is here.
RAY HAYNES – Ray Haynes was a titan of the B.C. labour movement at a time when unions made so much news that the Vancouver Sun employed two full-time labour reporters. No one made more news than Mr. Haynes. As head of the B.C. Federation of Labour from 1966 to 1973, Mr. Haynes pushed, propelled and prodded the Federation into the most militant labour organization in North America. There’s an obituary of Mr. Haynes here.
LIBERALS TRAIL, POILIEVRE FACES LIKEABILITY ISSUES – Although the federal Liberals trail in vote intent across Canada, Conservative Party Leader Pierre Poilievre lags in likeability while his party lags in must-win areas, according to newly released research from the Angus Reid Institute available here.
The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on how this is really not the time to weaken Ottawa’s lobbying guidelines: “With many people already troubled by foreign interference in Canadian elections, it will come as no relief that the federal lobbying commissioner is proposing rule changes that will make it easier for people who work on election campaigns to lobby the MPs they help get into office. The timing is purely coincidental, but it’s still lousy. This is no time to be casting more doubt on the integrity of Canada’s democracy.”
John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on how David Johnston is an inspired choice to investigate Chinese election interference: “David Johnston is an inspired choice for special rapporteur investigating Chinese interference in Canadian elections. If he is wise, Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre will accept that choice. Because to criticize Mr. Johnston would be the same as criticizing Stephen Harper. The former prime minister selected Mr. Johnston to be Canada’s 28th governor-general in 2010. Mr. Harper asked Mr. Johnston to stay on in 2015.”
Don Drummond (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how Canadians cannot be complacent about global shocks: “Nothing to see here” may be a tempting conclusion for Canadians with the failure of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, which had relatively small domestic presences. But witness the sharp drop in the price of Canadian bank stocks in the wake of Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse. And witness the continued drop on Tuesday on news of turbulence at the bank Credit Suisse, a matter that, while separate, underscores the same lesson: Just because Canada’s more conservative banking practices have somewhat shielded this country’s economy, it does not mean we should be complacent.”
Anna Lennox Esselment (Policy Options) on how a better way is possible than the random draw system that makes it hard for backbench MPs and senators with bad timing to advance their ideas: “Newly elected members of Parliament are eager to get started on changing legislation for the better. They burst into the House of Commons with good ideas to make life easier for their constituents. But MPs soon learn that not being in cabinet is a major barrier to advancing their ideas. Backbench MPs might spend hours consulting on a new policy to introduce as a private member’s bill only to discover that the procedural realities of Parliament mean the ability to advance an item under their name is subject to a random draw.”
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