Inside Politics

OotD - It's Friday Finance Committee Filibuster Time!

After spending a second night gathered around the committee table, the vote-a-thon continues at Finance this morning as the committee works its way through the 3,090 amendments proposed by Liberal MP and one man filibuster-er Scott Brison, with no immediate end in sight.

At the moment, the most optimistic projections have the committee wrapping up by 3pm, although that could be pushed back if there's a fresh outburst of procedural wrangling back in the House of Commons, which is set to return to report stage debate on the First Nations transparency bill later this morning.

Attentive Chamber watchers -- and, of course, OotD readers -- likely took note of the unexpected loss of control of the agenda that has bedeviled the government for the last two days. On Wednesday, the NDP successfully delayed a time allocation motion on the First Nations bill by forcing a series of time-killing votes on motions to adjourn debate, and - a new favourite, it appears - "that a Member now be heard." 

Although temporarily thwarted by the tactic, Government House Leader Peter Van Loan did manage to get his motion through the following day, although it required a vote to do so, since his strategy was simply to bypass routine proceedings entirely, thus preventing the NDP from triggering a concurrence debate. His victory was, however, a brief one, as the Liberals swiftly commandeered the schedule with a similar series of motions, thus adding hours to the ongoing filibuster at Finance by ensuring that members were repeatedly obliged to suspend for votes.

It remains to be seen whether either -- or, alternately, both -- opposition parties has a hankering to start a filibuster on a Friday afternoon. Stay tuned!

You can follow all the action via liveblog here -- and catch up on the debate so far with these highlights from the last 36 hours

Elsewhere on the Hill, Ottawa schoolchildren will "fill the Senate Chamber" for a special ceremony to mark National Child Day, which will include a fiddle troupe and a speech by former Senate page turned lawyer and children's author Dustin Milligan.

Meanwhile, on the ministerial circuit, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Diane Ablonczy takes the lead on a cross-country series of synchronized events to unveil "a new tool that gives Canadians useful, timely and official advice" that will, in theory, allow them to "make informed decisions about international travel," and which, according to the advisory, is an "improved website."

Also out and about today:

  • Conservative MP Candice Bergen will tour displays at a "chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosives workshop."
  • Transport Minister Denis Lebel takes the stage at a meeting of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities' board of directors.
  • CIDA Minister Julian Fantino delivers the keynote address at an Economic Club of Canada breakfast in Toronto, during which he will "highlight the importance of development to global prosperity."
  • Elsewhere in the city, Minister of State for Sport Bal Gosal takes part in Vanier Cup-related festivities, including the opening ceremonies and the presentation of the championship trophy.
  • Meanwhile, in Montreal, Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver speaks to the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal. 
  • Moving west, Minister of State for Finance Ted Menzies utters "short remarks" at the Manitoba Chamber of Commerce.
  • Finally, Maxime Bernier takes his pro-small business and tourism junior ministerial message to Banff, where he will attend the the 12th annual Association for Mountain Parks Protection and Enjoyment Gala. 
For up to the minute dispatches from the precinct and beyond, keep your eye on the Parliament Hill Ticker below -- or, alternatively, bookmark it and check back throughout the day. 

Mobile-friendly auto-updating text feed available here

NOTE: Updates added in reverse chronological (newer to older) order.

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