Inside Politics

MPs to debate Liberal pitch for 'twice monthly' Ebola briefings at committee

MPs will spend the day debating the pros and cons of a Liberal-backed motion that would, if passed, require Health Minister Rona Ambrose, Public Safety Minister Stevem Blaney and Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Gregory Taylor to provide "twice monthly" briefings to the Commons health committee on the state of Canada's efforts "at home and abroad" to protect Canadians from the ongoing Ebola outbreak.  

Meanwhile, RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson joins Ottawa Police Chief Charles Bordeleau and Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers at Procedure and House Affairs, where the trio will spend two hours fielding questions on a recent incident that saw New Democrat MP Yvon Godin blocked from the Commons Chamber by an overzealous security detail overseeing a visiting VIP, in this case, the German president.

Elsewhere on the committee front:

    • Senior departmental officials brief Health committee members as they kick off a new investigation into e-cigarettes.
    • Author Ethan Cutmann appears before the Subcommittee on International Human Rights, where he'll discuss his work on what the notice describes as "forced harvesting and trafficking of human organs"
    • Human Resources considers Conservative MP Dave Van Kesteren's private members' bid to tweak Canada's pension laws, while at Canadian Heritage, Senator Don Meredith will be front and centre as his proposal to create Lincoln Alexander Day goes through clause-by-clause.
    • Later this afternoon, Mothers Against Drunk Driving CEO Andrew Murie will share his thoughts on the government's draft "victims' bill of rights" at Justice, which will also hear from former federal ombudsman Steve Sullivan and victims' rights advocate Robert Hooper.
    • Defence officials provide MPs with an update on Canada's role in NATO Operation Reassurance in support of Ukraine.
    • Finally, Finance continues pre-budget consultations, where a steady stream of academics -- including Ivey Business School assistant professor Mike Moffatt, Queen's University law professor Arthur Cockfield and Carleton University professors Jennifer Robson and Frances Wooley -- will testify alongside representatives from various interest groups, including the Credit Union Central of Canada, the Institute of Marriage and Family and Imagine Canada.

 

Also on the Hill today:

 

    • The Parliamentary Budget Office posts a new report on the economic and fiscal outlook.
    • New Democrat Canada Post critic Alexandre Boulerice reveals the "next steps in the fight to save home mail delivery."
    • Former Bloc Quebecois MP Jean-Francois Fortin holds a press conference to discuss "his political future," during which he is expected to announce his intention to form a new party that will focus on defending regional rights.
    • Canadian Lutheran World Relief executive director Robert Granke teams up with Lutheran World Federation president Dr. Munib Younan to emphasize the importance of humanitarian aid and "peace building" in Jordan, Northern Iraq, West Africa and Gaza.
    • This afternoon, representatives from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency brief reporters on a new initiative that, according to the advisory, "aims to bring positive change for Palestinian refugees and the Arab-Israeli conflict."

 

Outside the precinct,  Transport Minister Lisa Raitt shows her support for "the safe use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)" during a visit to a Toronto-area photography store.

Later tonight, Raitt will hit the stage at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, where, alongside Green Party Leader Elizabeth May and journalists Don Martin and Tom Clark, she'll debate the necessity -- or not -- of the Senate at the 2014 Travers Debates. 

During the second part of the evening, Maclean's columnist Paul Wells will take on Ottawa Citizen columnist Andrew Cohen on the question of whether Canada has lost its way in the world.

Also out and about in the capital tonight:  Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau hits the stage at the Ottawa International Writers Festival, where he'll chat with Liberal candidate-in-waiting Seamus O'Regan on his newly released memoirs, Common Ground, which will also be feted at a "media cocktail reception" organized by HarperCollins.


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.

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