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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.

Former Supreme Court of Canada justice Morris Fish, in a 400-page report released today, is calling for major changes in how the Canadian Armed Forces deals with allegations of sexual misconduct.

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The report was mandated by law, and is distinct from a study now being conducted by retired Supreme Court justice Louise Arbour.

Globe and Mail justice writer Sean Fine and Parliamentary writer Janice Dickson report here.

According to the National Defence Department, copies of the report are available to the public by e-mailing:

Meanwhile, the House of Commons national defence committee will not invite more witnesses to testify about an allegation of sexual misconduct against former chief of the defence staff Jonathan Vance, government and opposition members have agreed – but they did not reach a consensus on how to proceed.


CONTINUED REACTION - As the discovery of the remains of 215 children at one of Canada’s largest residential schools continues to reverberate around the country, Indigenous leaders and community members say it is only the beginning of an important – but painful – national reckoning.

PRIME MINISTER TRUDEAU TODAY - Speaking to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities conference this morning, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he had met Monday with his cabinet to discuss next steps on “concrete action” to support survivors, families and Indigenous peoples. Of the children, he said, “Our country failed them.” Mr. Trudeau said repairing the “terrible wrongs” of residential schools can only occur if every order of government takes action alongside Indigenous peoples.

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EXPLAINER - What we know about the 215 children’s remains, and Canada’s reaction so far. Details here.

Tanya Talaga (The Globe and Mail) on why it is now time to bring our children home from the residential schools: The survivors of the Indian Residential School system told stories of their brothers and sisters, their friends and family members who went missing without a trace and no one did anything about it. Nothing at all. It was as if Canada did not believe them. Where is the list of the children’s names? Why didn’t the police investigate? What in God’s name are they doing now?”

Vaughn Palmer (The Vancouver Sun) on an emotional, powerful day in the B.C. legislature:Green MLA Adam Olsen delivered a powerful, eloquent speech in the legislature on Monday, reacting to news that the remains of more than 200 children have been detected at the site of the former residential school in Kamloops. “The words that I’m going to speak today aren’t easy, and they are direct,” said Olsen, a member of Vancouver Island’s Tsartlip First Nation. “Like many of my peers, my grandparents, my great aunties and uncles are survivors of Kuper Island Residential School. I know that they would want me here today honouring the horrors that they lived through by demanding accountability for them.”


HARASSMENT BY CHINA’S GOVERNMENT - China has set up a sophisticated network in this country to harass people of Chinese ethnicity and Uyghur- and Tibetan-Canadians, distort information in the media, influence politicians and form partnerships with universities to secure intellectual property, a new study says.

TORY QUESTIONS ON FIRED SCIENTISTS - The Conservatives are asking the House of Commons to compel the Public Health Agency of Canada to turn over hundreds of pages of documents after the organization’s president repeatedly refused to disclose why two scientists were fired from the country’s highest-security infectious-disease lab earlier this year. The Official Opposition is putting a motion up for debate on Tuesday that would order the Public Health Agency of Canada to release uncensored copies of all records relating to the matter to House of Commons Speaker Anthony Rota within 48 hours.

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Senior Parliamentary Reporter Steve Chase reports that Official Opposition Leader Erin O’Toole told a news conference this morning that the Canadian government owes Canadians a full explanation of why two scientists were fired from the country’s highest security virus lab. “How could two scientists with deep connections to the Chinese military be able to gain access to a high-level Canadian security-cleared laboratory with access to the world’s most dangerous viruses, like Ebola? Mr. O’Toole said. ”This security breach and how the government of Mr. Trudeau is trying to hide the truth is deeply troubling.” He said he believes the motion will obtain the support of the Bloc Quebecois and NDP, which would be necessary for it to pass.

CLOCK TICKING ON BILLS - The federal government is quickly running out of time to pass its priority bills into law as the clock counts down to the summer recess and a potential fall election.

GREEN PARTY CONFLICT - The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has exposed a fault line in the Green party, threatening political unity as lawmakers break from their leader and rank-and-file members clash with party staff.

NEW NEWFOUNDLAND BUDGET - Newfoundland and Labrador is hoping to cut its deficit nearly in half, aided in part by an oil rebound. The province tabled its second pandemic budget Monday, with a projected deficit of $826 million – about $800-million less than the previous year’s shortfall. The budget follows a controversial report tabled earlier this month by the province’s economic recovery team, which estimated the province’s overall “financial exposure” at $47.3-billion, once the debt carried by province-owned corporations is factored in.

DETOXIFYING POLITICS - Steve Paikin on efforts by Conservative MP Mike Lake to deal with the toxic levels of outrage in Canadian politics. From TVO.

PM USING A CANE? - Why was Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spotted Monday walking with a cane? His spokesperson explains here.

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Private meetings. The Prime Minister delivers a keynote address at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities annual conference, and also attends Question Period.


Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet and caucus members hold a press briefing on Bill C-10, an Act to amend the Broadcasting Act,

Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole holds a Parliament Hill news conference on the party’s Opposition Day motion. Also delivers a keynote address to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities annual conference.

Green Party Leader Annamie Paul holds a Parliament Hill news conference to address concerns regarding the continuation of the CESB and CERB pandemic benefits.

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NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh attends Question Period, and later participates in the House of Commons debate on the discovery of 215 Indigenous children buried at a former Residential School in Kamloops.


Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on the federal Liberals seeking to run out the clock on parliamentary disclosure: Liberals MPs have in recent weeks filibustered at the defence committee’s hearings into sexual misconduct by top military commanders and the procedure and house affairs committee’s review of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s decision to prorogue Parliament last August. “It really is the Liberal festival of filibusters,” said Conservative House Leader Gérald Deltell. It is not entirely new. In minority Parliaments, opposition parties in the majority can vote to hold hearings or demand documents, and governments sometimes seek to obstruct them.”

Eddie Goldenberg (Contributor to The Globe and Mail) on the Pandora’s Box that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau may be opening up by allowing Quebec to change the Constitution: If Quebec can reopen constitutional talks, how will the Prime Minister react when other provinces do the same? Indeed, it took Premier Jason Kenney less than a week to welcome Quebec’s move and state that he might use the precedent to introduce “unilateral” constitutional amendments to strengthen Alberta’s autonomy. He had already threatened to propose a constitutional amendment to change the equalization formula. What if New Brunswick makes the same move on its official bilingualism, or Manitoba seeks a constitutional amendment to abolish bilingual legislation?

Erin Crandall (Contributor to Policy Options) on what a provincial constitution is and how do we amend it: “The question seems deceptively simple, but like so many things in Canadian politics, it’s a complicated issue that we’ve done a good job of ignoring.”

Send along your political questions and we will look at getting answers to run in this newsletter. It's not possible to answer each one personally. Questions and answers will be edited for length and clarity.

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