This remarkable video, shot by Globe and Mail reporter Josh Wingrove on his iPhone, shows a view of the Hall of Honour, the main hall running north-south from the front door of the Centre Block to the entrance of the Library of Parliament at the north end. Security forces appear to shoot an armed suspect just outside the door of the Library of Parliament.
Mid-way down the Hall of Honour are entrances on either side to Parliament Hill’s two main committee rooms. On the left, or west side, is 237-C – the Commonwealth Room — where, at the exact moment that the shooter was moving down the hall, the prime minister and all his Conservative MPs were meeting.
Australia Broadcasting Corp. Parliamentary reporter Latika Bourke put the above on Instagram (taken at Kundalini Hair in Canberra, apparently) and minutes later (on my Instagram feed, anyhow) Gerald Butts, a top advisor to Liberal leader Justin Trudeau put this taken in the foyer of Canada’s House of Commons on Instagram: Continue reading Christmas at either end of the world
Bill to reform Parliament would strengthen Canadian democracy.
OTTAWA – Michael Chong, M.P. for Wellington-Halton Hills, today introduced his Private Members’ Bill, Reform Act, 2013.
The Reform Act puts forward three simple reforms to strengthen Parliament by proposing to restore local control over party nominations, strengthen caucus as a decision-making body and reinforce the accountability of party leaders to caucuses. These three reforms will empower MPs and give them the tools they need to represent their constituents in Ottawa. Continue reading MP Michael Chong's plan to "strengthen democracy"
The text of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s speech to be delivered at 1200 GMT in the Robing Room at the Palace of Westminster to members of the UK Parliament (pardon the formatting hiccups. That’s my fault, not anyone else’s, as I rushed to get this online) . The speech is 3,320 words long:
Lord Speaker, Mr. Speaker, Monsieur le premier ministre, Prime Minister, Lords and Members of the House of Commons: For anyone who fully understands and truly cherishes the free and democratic nature of our institutions and the long history upon which they rest
there is no honour to compare with an invitation to stand here at the very cradle of our political system and to address the Members of the Parliament of Westminster. Continue reading Prime Minister Stephen Harper's speech to the UK Parliament
The Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade has just released some photos of a recent trip by a Canadian Parliamentary delegation to Burma and here’s a neat one, as the group meets one of the world’s most famous women, Aung San Suu Kyi.
DFAIT did not provide the names of everyone in this photo but I know a few of them so here’s my best guess at who’s who. Continue reading Canadian MPs meet Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi
Today, in St. Hyacinthe, QC, our reporters asked Liberal leadership candidate more questions about the $277,000 he says he has earned in speaking fees since becoming an MP in 2008. You can watch one of his answers in the video above but I’ve also reproduced here below. If I parse it back correctly, Trudeau is saying his speaking tour has been necessary because Canadians are tuning out what happens in Parliament — and that, of course, is the fault of the current Conservative government — which means that if MPs, like Trudeau, want to talk to Canadians about their ideas and policies they advocated, well, the House of Commons is no longer the place to do that: Continue reading Trudeau: "Ottawa is less and less relevant to Canadians"
Prime Minister Stephen Harper made the tiniest of tweaks to his cabinet yesterday, moving Julian Fantino from his job as Associate Minister of Defence (procurement) to Minister of International Co-Operation, a job that came open with Bev Oda quit. Bernard Valcourt will move into Fantino’s old defence spot while holding on to his previous duties as minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.
Conley does not do a qualitative analysis in assessing which is better — minority or majority — but does provide some anecdotal reference to what, 50 year later at least, look like the very productive minority governments led by Lester Pearson and the relatively hamstrung, unproductive minority governments led by Paul Martin and Stephen Harper from 2004 through to 2011. Continue reading Majorities vs Minorities: Which kinds of Parliaments are more productive?
Last year, in the papers across our chains, I published a list of MPs that I thought were doing a great job as MPs. Looking back on 2010 I saluted the work in Parliament of Jack Layton, Chris Warkentin, Ted Menzies, Peter Julian, Siobhan Coady, Claude Bachand, Bob Rae, and Thierry St.-Cyr. Continue reading Who's been the top MPs of the year?