There were a lot of questions when Raj Grewal suddenly quit the House of Commons last week. Now we’re starting to get answers.
Sources tell The Globe and Mail that the former Liberal MP for Brampton East had been investigated by the RCMP for months leading up to his resignation, with officers sometimes tailing him to a Quebec casino where, over three years, he spent millions of dollars.
Financial documents also show a number of liens that list Mr. Grewal as a co-debtor, including for a condo in downtown Toronto and a Land Rover valued at $116,824. Mr. Grewal’s disclosures with the federal ethics commissioner also show he had lines of credit with three banks and a mortgage with a fourth. All that information is detailed in our story.
The base pay for a Member of Parliament is $175,600 a year.
Mr. Grewal is, so far, not commenting.
Canada Post employees will head back to work today, after the Senate passed legislation last night forcing them to do so.
Almost 3,000 people at the General Motors plant in Oshawa, Ont., will only be going to work there for another year, as the auto manufacturer has decided to close those operations as well as four other plants in the United States. The closures are evidence of the pinch that auto companies are feeling, between customers who are buying fewer cars and driving them less, and the high cost of developing new vehicles that use less or no fossil fuels.
Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is teaming up with reality TV star Kevin O’Leary for a series of campaign events across the country. The pair say the governing Liberals are poor managers of the economy. Mr. O’Leary, meanwhile, has had trouble paying off the large campaign debt he racked up during his brief run for the leadership of the Conservative Party.
The brewing conflict between Russia and Ukraine over three naval vessels may be just as much about the unpopularity of the country’s respective leaders Vladimir Putin and Petro Poroshenko, senior international correspondent Mark MacKinnon writes.
Canada has an important role to play in showing the international community how to work with other countries, the president of the United Nations General Assembly says. “Canada is such an important, reliable partner to multilateralism and I think that the practices, the policies, the good examples need to be shared across the border,” Maria Fernanda Espinosa told The Globe.
Over in Alberta, the provincial government is telling its energy regulator to beef up oversight of companies responsible for cleaning up the tens of thousands of abandoned and inactive oil wells that dot the province.
In B.C., the suspended clerk of the legislature, Craig James, said the accounting practices in his office were “essentially bulletproof” and that he still doesn’t know what he’s being investigated by police for.
In Quebec, an environmental group has taken the federal government to court, arguing that Ottawa’s climate policy is endangering the future for Canada’s youth.
In B.C., Green Party Leader Elizabeth May has a big event in her future: a wedding.
And, if Earth ever gets you down, there’s always Mars. NASA successfully landed the InSight probe on the Red Planet yesterday afternoon (Earth time) in a location that scientists compare, favourably, to a parking lot. Scientists hope to study the Martian interior and try to get data that can answer fundamental questions like what allowed Earth to develop a more robust atmosphere that supported life. The average surface temperature of Mars is minus 61 degrees Celsius, a little bit warmer than Ottawa has been feeling lately.
Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on what GM’s closure of plants says about the Liberal innovation policy: “It sure looks like the government’s industrial strategy is full of holes. At least the innovation-to-save-industry rhetoric has been beaten up.”
Barrie McKenna (The Globe and Mail) on the legacy of the 2009 auto bailout: “The billions of dollars sunk into the company’s Canadian assembly plants over the decades by Ottawa and the governments of Ontario and Quebec secured investments, and in some cases, production commitments. The money bought time. But it did not come with promises to keep jobs or specific plants in Canada forever.”
Allison Hanes (Montreal Gazette) on the environmental lawsuit in Quebec: “All this legal wrangling clearly shows that young people are no longer willing to sit idly by as their hopes for leading prosperous, healthy and safe lives diminish with each passing day.”
Daphne Bramham (Vancouver Sun) on how the Senate has changed: “But one important, and potentially troubling, difference is that the Independent senators have been emboldened. In the past two years, one of every four government bills has been amended. The Senate has recommended substantial amendments to controversial legislation including the bill on medically assisted dying and the Indian Act amendments ending gender discrimination. Soon, 105 senators — and remember only six are from B.C. — will be discussing the bill that would ban oil tanker traffic in northern British Columbia. Is this sober, second thought? Or is it activism?”
Aurel Braun (The Globe and Mail) on tensions between Russia and Ukraine: “That the Russian attack in and around the Kerch Strait was swiftly condemned by both NATO and the European Union underlines the utter gravity of the situation. The West needs to move quickly along two lines – de-escalation and deterrence – while making these two seemingly contradictory goals compatible, if long term peace is to succeed. How much is at stake cannot be overstated.”