Category: Federal Politics

The facts vs. the PPC – is everything really worse? (part 1 of a series)

One of many unsettling things about Pierre Poilievre is that he doesn’t like nosy reporters. He made that clear a year ago when he refused to take questions at his first news conference after winning the Conservative party leadership. And he continued in that direction following his triumphal performance at the PPC (Pierre Poilievre Conservative) policy convention in Quebec City over the weekend.  Poilievre didn’t want to talk to journalists about some of the party’s more unsettling  forays into social conservatism, and even avoided the opportunity to put more meat on the bones of his rhetoric about housing, taxes...

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Despite wildfires Poilievre’s party campaigns against climate measures

It wasn’t just  people from the Northwest Territories and the Okanagan Valley who have recently had their lives disrupted. The latest outbreak of wildfires that has added to the record destruction of our forests and forced some 50,000 people to flee their homes also inconvenienced Pierre Poilievre and his Conservative party (aka the PPC – Pierre Poilievre Conservatives).  Last week, the PPCs  had to postpone their campaign against carbon pricing.   The PPCs had planned an “axe the tax rally,” featuring Poilievre, for last Monday in Campbell River, B.C., a community about 500 kilometres west of the latest major...

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The climate has changed, politics should follow

Hackneyed commentary about rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic seemed inevitable last week with the simultaneous shuffling of Justin Trudeau’s cabinet and release of a poll showing the Liberals trailing the Pierre Poilievre-led Conservatives by double digits. The shuffle itself was ho-hum, except perhaps for those closest to the action – the trio of ministers given the boot and the newbies getting their first shot at a cabinet post. The poll, on the other hand, was a bit of a shocker.  The unprecedented 10-point lead for the Conservatives comes with the usual caveats. The Abacus Data poll claims a...

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Foreign Interference #2: Molehill shrinks but mountain grows

Oh my, did I get that wrong!  Several weeks ago I wrote optimistically that the “Chinese election interference scandal” that has poisoned federal politics for months was beginning to run out of steam. Unfortunately, just like ex-Governor-General David Johnston, I failed to take into account a couple of things – the old adage that in politics perception is more important than facts, and the new reality of hyper-partisanship. Johnston delivered a report last month demolishing much of the flimsy collection of allegations underpinning claims from the opposition and some media players that the Trudeau government failed to act on warnings...

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Election interference: Leakers, the Conservatives and the media turn a molehill into a menacing mountain

I’m far removed from Parliament Hill where the beat goes on with what has become known as the “Chinese election interference scandal.” Bearing in mind that a scandal is in the eye of the beholder, and posting one day before the much anticipated committee testimony by the Prime minister’s top staffer, I would venture optimistically that the efforts of the Conservatives and the Bloc Quebecois to make damaging political hay out of the issue are flagging. One reason for the cooling off is the grudging concession by Katie Telford, Justin Trudeau’s chief of staff, to put in an appearance...

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Audit of pandemic relief programs raises more doubts about CEWS

Massive sums of COVID-19 economic benefits going astray was in the news last week, with Canada’s Auditor-General raising the possibility that as much as 15 percent of $210 billion in federal pandemic relief was misdirected. Much of the media attention turned to CERB – the Canadian Emergency Relief Benefit – designed to give $500 a week to individuals who lost work or hours as a result of the pandemic. CERB and related programs for individuals paid out a total of $110 billion to over eight million Canadians between March 2020 and October 2021. Although they were buried in the...

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Richard Starr, The man behind the Point

About Richard

RICHARD STARR has had careers as a journalist, public servant, broadcaster, political staffer and freelance policy adviser. He is author of numerous newspaper and magazine articles, a former radio and TV producer and weekly newspaper editor, and the author of three non-fiction books. Starr has lived in Dartmouth for more than 30 years.

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