Inside Politics

Orders of the Day - Bad Robot!

Well, the respite from the sound and fury of political sabre-waving was nice while it lasted, but  the eerie still of a precinct at rest has been well and truly shattered by a fresh set of potentially politically incendiary revelations -- courtesy of PostMedia reporters Glen McGregor and Stephen Maher -- on an ongoing Elections Canada invesgiation into the origins of some of those heretofore unexplained misleading phone calls that went out during the final days of the last federal election.    

New Democrat MPs Pat Martin and Robert Aubin hit the National Press Theatre to share their thoughts on the latest development later this morning. 

Meanwhile, Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs reconvenes for another full day of hearings on the omnicrime bill, which can be viewed via the magic of livestream here.

Expected to testify today: The respective heads of the Correctional Service and Parole Board of Canada, as well as Correctional Investigator Howard Sapers; the Canadian Association of Police Boards; Fraser Valley criminologist John Martin, Aboriginal Legal Services of Toronto; Royal Ottawa Health Care Group psychiatrist John Bradford; Institute Philippe Pinel; Centre for Addiction and Menthal Health forensic psychiatrist Scott Woodside; Canadian Parents of Murdered Children and Survivors of Homicide Victims; and the John Howard and Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies, as well as several individuals.

Also weighing in on C-10: representatives from the Smart Justice Network, who, while not on the official witness list, will hold a press conference to detail theconsequences the bill could have for a "fair and effective justice system." Among the speakers expected are former federal victims ombudsman Steve Sullivan, retired Yukon Chief Justice Barry Stuart, retired senior Ontario court judge James Chadwick, former Progressive Conservative MP David Daubney and Toronto youth justice advocate Eva Marszewski.

Also running the gallery gauntlet today: Liberal MP John McCallum, who will stress the "need for transparency on the details of upcoming cuts to government services and programs."

Later this afternoon, the Canada 2020 Speakers' Series picks up the ongoing conversation on The Canada We [sic] Want with a panel discussion on innovation and productivity with Kevin Lynch, Jim Stanford, Dr. Peter Nicholson and Lawson Hunter.

On the good news circuit:

  • The PM takes advantage of the final leg of the parliamentary recess to head north -- to Iqaluit, specifically -- where he is expected to make an announcement on First Nations education at Nunavut Arctic  College
  • Finance Minister Jim Flaherty drops by the Toronto offices of the Canadian Cancer Society, where he will "highlight a new initiative to help family caregivers."
  • Human Resources Minister Diane Finley is set to deliver what sounds remarkably like a repeat performance of that speech on the "realities of Cansda's changing demograpics" to the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce.
  • Treasury Board President Tony Clement lauds the "importance of social media and open government" as a tool for "interacting with Canadians" at the North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce.
  • International Trade Minister Ed Fast makes an "important announcement" at the Port of Prince Rupert.

In interim opposition leader-related news: Nycole Turmel is slated to appear at, of all things, a press conference for the Gatineau Futures Banque National 2012 international tennis tournament -- and yes, I had to re-read that notice to make sure the drafter hadn't confused her with a c-string junior mint on the good news circuit.

Not that there's anything wrong with tennis tournaments, mind you, it just seems a bit strange for an opposition leader -- even an interim one -- to take part in such an ostensibly nonpolitical event. 

Finally, Bob Rae continues his foray through Quebec with a visit to Chicoutimi. 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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