With the House of Commons on a week-long break, party leaders are on the road, expanding the delivery of their political messages beyond Ottawa.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in Montreal on Monday, speaking to a transportation conference and holding a town-hall meeting for an audience of youth mentors. He is expected to continue his travels, in Canada, this week.
Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre is in the Vancouver region on Tuesday, holding a news conference in New Westminster, east of Vancouver.
Mr. Poilievre, according to the Conservative Party of Canada website, is then set to attend a downtown Vancouver fundraising event in the evening. On Wednesday, Mr. Poilievre is scheduled to do a fundraising event in Nanoose Bay on Vancouver Island.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, a B.C. MP already in the province as the week began, met with postsecondary students on Monday. On Tuesday, his schedule features a round-table event with seniors on the cost of living and a news conference, in Coquitlam, what his party would like to see in the next federal budget. The budget will be tabled on March 28. Deputy Ottawa bureau chief Bill Curry reported here on the looming budget. Mr. Singh is spending Thursday and Friday in Toronto.
Meanwhile Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet is touring the riding of Bécancour–Nicolet–Saurel on Tuesday with Louis Plamondon, the MP since 1984, and holding a news conference.
The House of Commons sits again on March 20. The Senate is also on a break, with senators returning March 21.
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CHINA DIVERTS SOME RESEARCHERS TO CANADA AFTER U.S. VISA DENIALS: CSIS - Beijing is using a “workaround strategy” for postgraduate researchers to study cutting-edge technology at Canadian and U.S. universities after Washington began denying visas for some Chinese students on the grounds that they might steal intellectual property with military uses, according to a Canadian Security Intelligence Service report. Story here.
VOLKSWAGEN PICKS ONTARIO FOR FIRST NORTH AMERICAN EV BATTERY PLANT - Volkswagen Group will build its first North American battery factory in Southwestern Ontario, one of the biggest milestones to date in this country’s efforts to establish itself as a major player in electric-vehicle manufacturing. Story here.
MEMORIAL UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT STEPS AWAY FROM DUTIES OVER ANCESTRY CLAIMS - The president of Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador is apologizing for hurt she may have caused by claiming Indigenous ancestry, and temporarily stepping away from her duties. Story here.
CONSERVATIVES OUTLINE BUDGET GOALS - The Conservatives are calling for lower payroll taxes, financial incentives to spur housing construction, and an end to deficit-spending and carbon tax hikes in the coming federal budget. Story here.
ALBERTA SEEKS WORKERS FROM OTHER PROVINCES - The Alberta government has started a second campaign aimed at attracting more skilled workers from Ontario and Atlantic Canada. Story here.
JESUITS NAME PRIESTS, BROTHERS ACCUSED OF ABUSE - The Jesuits of Canada, a religious order of the Catholic Church, has published the names of 27 priests and brothers who it says have been credibly accused of sexually abusing minors, one of the few Catholic entities in the country to release such a list. Story here.
MOE CRITICIZED OVER HARPER JOINING SASKATCHEWAN TRADE MISSION - Premier Scott Moe is facing criticism after it was revealed that former Prime Minister Stephen Harper joined a recent Saskatchewan trade mission to India. Story here from CTV.
NOTLEY CONSIDERED EXIT AFTER ELECTION DEFEAT - Rachel Notley told her Edmonton constituency nomination meeting on Saturday there was a time right after her party was defeated in 2019 that she mused about stepping aside. 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.
MINISTERS ON THE ROAD - Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair, in Banff, announced funding under the Search and Rescue New Initiatives Fund with the Search and Rescue Association of Alberta. Indigenous Services Minister Patty Hajdu, in her capacity as minister for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario, in Gravenhurst, announced $2.2-million in funding for four community and business growth initiatives in the Muskoka region. Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino, in Oakville, Ont., announced that Halton Region will receive about $3.94-million to prevent gun crime and violence in the region from the $250-million Building Safer Communities Fund first announced in March, 2022. International Trade Minister Mary Ng, in London leading a women’s trade mission to the United Kingdom, delivered a keynote address to kick off the mission. Her visit ends on Wednesday. Filomena Tassi, minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, in Burlington, announced support for the aerospace sector.
NEW TELEFILM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - Julie Roy has been appointed executive director of Telefilm Canada for a five-year term, effective April 3, federal Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez said in a statement Tuesday. Telefilm is a federal cultural agency that produces and highlights original productions. Ms. Roy has produced 50 animated works, and has about 30 years of experience in the Canadian film industry, including senior leadership positions at the National Film Board of Canada. She was appointed the NFB’s director general and programming head in September, 2022.
PRIME MINISTER’S DAY
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in Montreal, delivered remarks at the opening ceremony of IMPULSION – the International Summit on Electric and Smart Transportation, met with business leaders and visited exhibits at the summit, and participated in a town hall with youth mentors and community members hosted by Pour 3 Points, an organization that trains sports coaches.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, in Burnaby, B.C., met with students at the British Columbia Institute for Technology’s Burnaby Campus.
No schedules released for other party leaders.
Monday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast features food economist Michael von Massow. He says blaming Canada’s big grocers doesn’t explain the complex web of factors that have led to sustained food inflation. He helps untangle exactly what’s behind the rise, how much “greedflation” is a part of it and how Canada could make things easier for consumers. The Decibel is here.
RAYMOND GAUTHIER - There’s an obituary here on Raymond Gauthier, the husband of RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki. Mr. Gauthier died on March 4, aged 70.
Conservatives are now more trusted than the Liberals when it comes to managing Ottawa’s finances, according to a new Nanos survey conducted for The Globe and Mail ahead of the coming federal budget. Story here.
The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on the eight excuses of Liberal MPs to duck a public inquiry (and none of them are good enough): “Pity the poor Liberal members of the House of Commons procedure and House affairs committee. They want you to know that they would really, truly like to set up an independent public inquiry to investigate China’s meddling in the 2019 and 2021 elections. But, you must understand, there are just so very many stumbling blocks (at least eight) that make that fine-sounding idea impractical.”
Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on the deal on Roxham Road: “In its simplest form, a deal could boil down to a temporary quid pro quo. The U.S. could agree that Canada can direct back asylum-seekers who cross between official points of entry, and Canada could resettle more of the migrants from places such as Venezuela, Haiti and Cuba, who are in Mexico trying to enter the U.S. A broader version would see Canada, and probably Mr. Trudeau, take on diplomatic efforts to promote orderly migration in the hemisphere, including programs aimed at the root causes of migration such as gang violence.”
Kirsten Johnson and James Maskalyk (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how Canadian doctors should be able to work anywhere in the country: “The human body is the same no matter where you find it, and in a country like Canada, national educational bodies ensure training prepares graduates to work in any part of our country. Upon graduation, however, health care workers are forced to obtain provincial licenses at significant cost and extensive administrative time. Not only does this system curtail their mobility – it defies the ethics of medicine by denying care to all people, no matter who or where they are.”
Ai-Men Lau (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how, to really tackle Beijing’s interference, Canada must engage with the Chinese diaspora: “While the Chinese diaspora faces increasing anti-Asian sentiment and marginalization in Canada, the baggage of another home has followed them across oceans. Those who dare to speak out against the CCP, even on Canadian soil, endanger not only themselves but their friends and loved ones back in China or other PRC-controlled territories. This is why the whole-of-society approach should centre on the Chinese diaspora – particularly the vulnerable communities within it, such as Hong Kongers, Uyghurs and Tibetans. While the diaspora and dissident communities bear the brunt of foreign interference by the CCP, these groups are often ignored when they could be helping to combat it.”
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