06.19.2016 08:54 AM

Trudeau’s first Parliamentary session

It was bumpy. 

They’re a new government, and they often looked like it. C-14, in particular, was not their finest hour. At different points, it was:

  • The elbowgate thing, which planted a seed of doubt about Justin Trudeau
  • The Motion Six thing, which made them look a bit autocratic
  • The hasty withdrawal of Motion Six thing, which simultaneously made them look a bit weak
  • The Senate standoff thing, which reminded everyone what an utter disgrace the aptly-named Red Chamber is
  • The inability to meet the Supreme Court deadline thing, which was a stupid deadline anyway

And so on. C-14 aside, Trudeau performed  well on the international stage, there were no ministerial scandals, the honeymoon proved durable. Not bad. 

The Opposition? Neither party has a permanent leader, but that’s okay. Revealingly, perhaps, the Tories adapted quickly to their new role, while the Dippers (revealingly) are trapped in their usual existential debate without end. Plus ca change, etc. 

What do you think, Dear Reader? What were the highlights and the lowlights?


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    davie says:

    I enjoyed watching the minister who is going to give us the Trans Pacific Partnership telling the House that she was consulting on Canada’s behalf with (she mentioned 5 names), and those 5 turned out to be guests on the tv talk show she spent 20 thou plus of tax money on to attend.
    I enjoyed the Liberal House Leader and the Justice Minister explaining to the House how the Justice Minister attended a Liberal fund raiser fund raiser with a clutch of lawyers in Toronto as the MP from Vancouver Granville only, not the Justice Minister in a pay to play gathering.
    I am enjoying the single source for our new war plane, without any explanation as to what the new plane is suited to do.
    I enjoyed the war mongering Conservatives pushing for making war on Syrians, Iraqis and Russians – especially Russians.
    I enjoyed the Liberals’ attempts to manipulate the voting system in their favour before the next election.

    I like some new MP’s, Jane Philpott, Aaron Weir, Deltell, Hehr…and some old faces, Quach, Christopherson, Chong, McKay,…and I prefer Scheer as a critic, he is doing a good job

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    bluegreenblogger says:

    Having a particular interest in Foreign Affairs, I can say that Trudeau has not yet disappointed, it takes a lot of time to get things done. He is leveraging his personal popularity far more effectively than I knew it could be. But now the tough stuff starts. Canada is badly overdue a more comprehensive policy review than your typical ‘white paper’. There are re-alignments all around the globe that Canada has to influence, participate in, or stymie. And OUR national interests are diverging from our allies. Tense stuff coming, that requires grown up risk-taking (management) and decisions. We shall see. Domestically, honeymoon still on, Trudeau and the Liberals can still do no wrong.

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    terence quinn says:

    I like the way JT has handled himself, elbow gate included. He backed off anything that might infringe on his promise of real democracy and that is very important. The opposition has had not much to shoot at because all his legislation so far, is pretty good, even C14. His cabinet is performing as well as can be expected being, in some cases, new to government.
    He has certainly improved Canada’s image in the world and may be improving the lot of all politicians by his down to earth presence.
    I believe his government, and himself, will be much more in sync and polished by the fall sitting.

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    Francis says:

    I agree with you, more or less.

    Here’s how I rate the leaders:

    B for Trudeau: He’s not good inside the House. He’s not quick on his feet and can’t give as good as he takes. Luckily for him he’s got more charm and charisma than the entire Opposition benches combined so he does just fine outside of the House. But I think he should either brush up on his QP skills or let someone else handle the Q’s (like Dominic LeBlanc). I think he handle the elbow thing fine; the best anyone in his situation probably could have.

    B+ for Ambrose: The style is all there; she’s great with the Q’s and partisan jousting in the House and delivers it all with a finesse I would never had expected from her. But the substance is utterly lacking. None of the issues the CPC has raised is worth the shit the strategists were taking when they came up with them. Ambrose is having a tough time maintaining the corrosively partisan nature of her caucus and its making them look like top-notch assholes.

    F- for Mulcair: Just, go away. Its cringe worthy having to sit there and watch a sit around in his own humiliation with anger and bitterness. He’s like the guy who got laid of at 9AM in the morning then decided to stick around the rest of the day while getting drunk at his desk and hurling profanities at his co-workers.

    Heres how I rate the parties:

    A+ for Liberals: It doesn’t get much better for the Grits right now. They’ve take a few on the chin because completely unnecessarily. I think operatives need to reassess their communications strategy because whatever they’ve got in place now is not working. House Leadership needs to be refreshed and someone else needs to be doing Stephane Dion’s communication for him. Overall, Canadians still love the new PM and approve of the Liberal government — so its important that the Liberals learn how to manage the House properly as well as they do their image.

    D for Conservatives: I don’t know where all the “we’ve gotta change our tone” shit went because they’ve only gotten more petty with time. If this is the party of Candice Bergen, Jason Kenney and that skinny kid from Saskatchewan then they’re never going to win another seat in Urban Canada. I am turning into a big fan of Andrew Scheer though, who is fitting into his new role so damn well. Apart from that, they are still very much the shadow of the previous government — only more resentful.

    F for the NDP: I just don’t know. I find it very hard to make a case for the NDP’s existence to be honest. Its obvious that Mulcair’s presence is like an albatross for that caucus and they’re still bitterly fighting the 2015 election. The party needs to desperately reset but the apparent lack of leadership hopefuls should be very concerning for Dippers. (If the best you can do for potential leadership is Niki Ashton, then you are f*cked as a party). All in all, this caucus is stuck in vociferous irrelevance somewhere between the centrist platform of 2015 and Bernie Sanders.

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    e.a.f. says:

    All over, I’d say they’re doing O.K. and I don’t vote Liberal, would if I had to but haven’t had to yet.

    So as one from not the party. they are doing fine. I got some of my rights back. I’d like a couple of other things back, but hey at least its working so far.

    What I liked best about the new P.M. is his wife, Sophie G.T. She is truly amazing and funny and well she’s my favorite Liberal.

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    BlueGritr says:

    A very good eight months or so for PMJT. His senior ministers, not so much. Morneau, especially, looks way over his head in Finance. Parliamentarians to watch: the New Democrats
    Alexandre Boulerice and Guy Caron; and the Conservatives’ Gérard Deltell. Strong on their feet. Good communicators. Passionate. And they may all make runs for their respective parties’ leadership mantle.

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    Ronald O'Dowd says:


    This Prime Minister has shown himself to be mortal. Net negative.

    The government remains popular after many mistakes — not seen as errors by John Q. Public. A strong net positive.

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    BillBC says:

    “Trudeau performed well on the international stage,”

    –yes, it’s mostly performance, and he’s very good at it…

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    Chris says:

    The Canadian Senate an utter disgrace? In the assisted-death matter, it undertook an independent analysis and pointed out a number of flaws and follies in the Commons’ bill. The Commons improved its bill by accepting a lot of them, and where the Commons stood firm, the Senators properly deferred to the representative house.

    Compare the US, where everything that does not command 60% support in a wildly unrepresentative Senate is vetoed. The ‘abolish the Senate’ movement is much more urgently needed there than in Canada.

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