Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s younger brother is set to appear Wednesday before a parliamentary committee – a rare position for a family member of a federal leader.
Alexandre Trudeau will be talking to the Commons ethics committee about foreign interference in Canada.
The documentary filmmaker and freelance journalist has told Le Devoir newspaper that he would like to appear in order to explain the good work conducted by the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation, where he is a member.
Alexandre Trudeau’s appearance is scheduled to begin at 4:30 p.m. ET. Find meeting info here, as well as a video link.
There’s a story here on last week’s Commons committee testimony from the former president of the Trudeau foundation.
Heading into the Liberal caucus meeting on Wednesday, the Prime Minister was asked about his brother’s appearance.
“I think my brother will be able to explain very well what happened and his perspective, and people will see very clearly that, with respect to the – the Trudeau Foundation, I have not had a direct or indirect involvement for many years,” Mr. Trudeau said.
The Prime Minister has said that he has not been involved with the organization since he became Liberal leader in 2013.
Asked about what he hoped to learn from the Prime Minister’s brother, federal Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre said, ahead of his party’s caucus meeting, he wants to know more about the influence of the Chinese government in these matters.
Please check The Globe and Mail for updates on Alexandre Trudeau’s testimony.
BREAKING - Two new senators have been appointed by the Governor General, the Prime Minister’s Office announced Wednesday. They are Jane MacAdam and Iris Petten who are filling vacancies for Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador.
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CSIS RESPONSIBLE FOR NOT DISCLOSING CHINA’S TARGETING OF MP: TRUDEAU - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada’s spy service is responsible for the decision to not inform Conservative MP Michael Chong in 2021 that he and his family were being targeted by the Chinese government after he led an effort for a Parliamentary motion that condemned Beijing’s treatment of Uyghurs as genocide. Story here.
MISCHIEF CONVICTION OF CALGARY PREACHER CREATES CHALLENGES FOR UCP - A Calgary street preacher has been convicted of mischief for egging on protesters blocking the Canada-U.S. border in southern Alberta last year, a decision that revived a political headache for the United Conservative Party on the second day of the provincial election campaign. Story here.
PM UNWELCOME AT MOTREAL MASSACRE MEMORIALS DUE TO FIREARMS POLICY - The country’s most prominent gun-control group says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won’t be welcome at the next memorial to the victims of the Montreal massacre after his government watered down its assault-style firearms ban. Story here.
KING CHARLES HAS WORK TO DO TO GET ACQUAINTED WITH CANADIANS: GG - Canadians do not feel as much affection for King Charles as they did for his mother, Queen Elizabeth, so he has work to do in order for the country to get to know him better, Governor-General Mary Simon says. Story here.
STUDY REQUIRED ON HOW HYBRID WORK AFFECTING PUBLIC SERVICE PRODUCTIVITY: PBO - Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux said the federal government should study how hybrid work is affecting productivity in the public service. Story here.
SLOW START FOR $4-BILLION FEDERAL PROGRAM - Ottawa’s $4-billion program to help small businesses upgrade their digital technology is off to a slow start. Story here.
DECOMMISSIONING OF 24 SUSSEX DRIVE UNDERWAY - Twenty-four Sussex Drive is officially being decommissioned for good – stripped bare of lighting, plumbing, some walls and phone lines as part of a $4.3-million effort, while officials wonder whether to fix the old house or knock it down. Story here from the Ottawa Citizen.
PM’S COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR EXITS - Justin Trudeau’s communications director is exiting his post after a nine-year professional association with the Prime Minister. Story here.
QUESTIONS RAISED ABOUT $167,000 SENATE COMMITTEE TRIP TO U.K. - Members of a Senate committee in charge of monitoring spending for the Upper House are headed to London on a $167,000 trip that another senator says they could replace with Zoom calls. Story here.
HEALTH MINISTER ACCUSED OF JEOPARDIZING EFFORTS TO CONTROL PRESCRIPTION PRICES - Two former insiders at Canada’s drug price regulator have testified that interference from federal Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos raised questions about the government’s closeness to the pharmaceuticals industry and jeopardized efforts to control spiralling prescription drug prices. Story here.
THIS AND THAT
TODAY IN THE COMMONS – Projected Order of Business at the House of Commons, May 03, accessible here.
LABOUR TURMOIL AND LIBERAL CONVENTION - As the national Liberal convention looms Thursday, the Public Service Alliance of Canada is threatening to picket the three-day event, which will take place at a downtown Ottawa convention centre, because Canada Revenue Agency workers are still on strike. PSAC announced a deal for the rest of its 120,000 members on Monday. PSAC makes its plans clear here.
Former foreign affairs minister Marc Garneau appears at a meeting of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and iImmigration on the subject of the government’s response to the final report of the special committee on Afghanistan.
International Development Minister Harjit Sajjan, in Ottawa, was with Housing Minister Ahmed Hussen to announce $71-million in humanitarian assistance funding for Sudan, South Sudan and the Central African Republic. Story here.
Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem was scheduled to speak to the Toronto Region Board of Trade on the challenges and risks in getting inflation back to target. The event included an audience Q&A.
Former federal cabinet ministers Lisa Raitt and Anne McLellan, co-chairs of the Coalition for a Better Future, appeared before the Senate Committee on Banking, Commerce and Economy to discuss the coalition’s Scorecard report on Canada achieving long-term, inclusive and sustainable growth.
PRIME MINISTER'S DAY
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in Ottawa, attended the Liberal caucus meeting and was scheduled to speak with Kenyan President William Ruto.
Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet was scheduled to hold a news conference on Parliament Hill ahead of Question Period.
Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre held a news conference ahead of attending the weekly Conservative caucus meeting.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, in Ottawa, attended the NDP caucus meeting, and spoke to journalists before participating in Question Period.
No schedules released for other party leaders.
Wednesday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast looks into the federal government’s 2021 launch of a project to plant two billion trees by 2031 to help Canada reach its climate goal. A recent audit shows that the government is not on track to hit those numbers. Energy and environment reporter Matthew McClearn explains the difficulties of the 2 Billion Trees program, and how its success or failure could affect our other pressing climate goals. The Decibel is here.
The Globe and Mail Editorial Board: On Press Freedom Day, imagine a world without journalism : In a world without journalism, you might know tomorrow’s weather forecast, but not why the climate is heating up. In a world without journalism, you might know who’s running for mayor, but not what they really stand for. In a world without journalism, you might know of government or corporate wrongdoing, but not how to bring it to light. In a world without journalism, you would be vulnerable to manipulation, and have no way of even knowing, much less fighting back. On this, the 30th World Press Freedom Day, we’d like to ask you to imagine what daily life would be like without independent-minded journalism that brings context to the swirl of events, that brings malfeasance to light – and that holds the powerful to account.”
John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on how the agreement between Treasury Board and public service workers shows working from home is here to stay: “The tentative agreement between the Treasury Board and the Public Service Alliance of Canada marks an important step on the road to the most radical transformation of work since the invention of the postwar suburb. We are becoming, permanently, a society in which many of us work from home all or much of the time. The new contract with federal public service workers will entrench and expand that phenomenon. There was that moment in the frantic pandemic spring of 2020 when many of us discovered to our amazement that it was possible to run businesses without workers in the office. What started out as an emergency quickly became routine. The PSAC strike was, in part, about entrenching that routine.”
Gary Mason (The Globe and Mail) on whether Alberta can take four more years of Danielle Smith: “Alberta Premier Danielle Smith spent her first day on the campaign trail Monday answering the most important question she faces ahead of the May 29 provincial election: what is the public to make of her volatile governing style? In the seven short months she’s been in charge, Ms. Smith has leapt from one hot mess to another, almost all of which have been of her own making. Her premiership has been defined by tumult and controversy. She has been as mercurial a political leader as the province has ever known. Now she is seeking a mandate to govern for four more years. Albertans will have to decide whether they can take any more.”
Rachel Pulfer (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how, with the rise of AI-generated propaganda, journalism is more important than ever: “Media organizations wage a war on multiple fronts. They’re fighting to stay alive financially. They are struggling to retain the attention and the trust of those who consume their products. And they are fielding ongoing attacks on their credibility. (A well-thumbed page in the authoritarian leader’s playbook is to discredit and then replace independent journalism with alternative facts that support your leadership narrative.) Journalists work to assert fact-driven reporting in an online environment awash in information pollution, disinformation and propaganda. And women journalists, and in particular women of colour, endure relentless personal attacks. It’s a grim outlook indeed for those who care about the ability of electorates to make democratic decisions based on facts. These problems pale in comparison to the future we now face. The onset of ChatGPT and artificial intelligence-generated deep fakes means a world in which electorates now make democratic decisions in an online media environment informed by fictitious images so compelling that family members of politicians can no longer tell the real from the fake.”