Inside Politics

Orders of the Day - Time's (about to be) up for the crime bill debate!

It's Wednesday, which means the Commons will be shuttered until this afternoon as the parties hold their usual weekly caucus meetings.

When the Chamber reopens later today, the first item of business on the agenda will likely be a motion to impose time allocation on report stage and third reading of the omnibus crime bill, which will almost certainly require at least one vote and thirty minutes of bells, thus plunging the afternoon committee program into mild to medium disarray.

Once that bit of now routine business is out of the way, MPs will resume consideration of the ffity opposition-proposed amendments that survived yesterday's ruling by the speaker, although how long they'll have to do so will, of course, be determined by the time allocation motion itself. 

Meanwhile, outside the Chamber, the supplementary estimates circuit is in full swing, with Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan, Transport Minister Denis Lebel and, appearing on behalf of Industry Canada, various senior departmental officials all slated to go before committees this afternoon, although as noted above, those meetings will almost certainly be interrupted - and, given that Duncan, at least, was only scheduled to be there for the first hour, in some cases quite possibly preempted entirely - by the aforementioned vote.

Elsewhere on the committee front, Natural Resources continues its study on resource development in Northern Ontario, Health does the same with chronic diseases related to aging and Public Accounts deals with unspecified committee business.

Later this afternoon, opposition MPs Alex Atamanenko, Jim Karygiannis and Elizabeth May will hold a tripartisan press conference to share the details of a soon-to-be-reintroduced private members' bill to "establish a federal Department of Peace."

Elsewhere in Ottawa, Transport, Infrastructure and Communities Minister Denis Lebel will make an announcement "about a key federal commitment in Budget 2011" at the Strandherd-Armstrong Bridge construction site, after which he heads back downtown to deliver the keynote address at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Board of Directors luncheon.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Science Gary Goodyear is in Mississauga to attend the official opening of the Sheridan College Institute of Technology's new campus, and Finance Minister Jim Flaherty prepares to take Manhattan, where he's set to speak at "Toronto Financial Services Day in New York". 

Finally, later tonight, Parliament Hill denizens will descend upon the Government Conference Centre for the annual All Party Party, which, in the words of co-chairs Senator Jim Munson and Liberal MP Mauril Belanger, "honours all the House of Commons, Senate and Library of Parliament Employees who assist in the daily operation of our beloved Canadian Parliament." 

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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