Politics

PM signals openness to election law reform amendments

​Justin Trudeau says he welcomes amendments from opposition parties to his government's proposed reforms to laws governing federal political parties and elections.

Gesture comes after threat to cut short debate

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Thursday, May 3, 2018. (Justin Tang/Canadian Press)

Justin Trudeau said he welcomes amendments from opposition parties to his government's proposed reforms to laws governing federal political parties and elections.

The prime minister is stressing his openness to amendments in response to Conservative demands that government advertising and ministerial travel be limited in the three months preceding an election call.

Bill C-76 would limit spending by parties and advocacy groups during the pre-writ period but, unless government ads and ministers are also constrained, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer said the legislation will benefit the ruling Liberals and harm opposition rivals.

Scheer also said the bill does nothing to stop advocacy groups from using foreign money to influence the outcome of elections.

Trudeau said he's open to "reasoned" amendments on that front as well.

Conservatives and New Democrats, however, are accusing the government of "bullying" opposition parties by threatening to impose time limits on debate over C-76.

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