Abousfian Abdelrazik
2 min

Opening the closet door

If a cabinet minister gets outed on CBC Radio, and nobody else reports on it, does it still mean that it’s a story? Well, yes. But seriously — nobody else said boo. Not even Jane Taber, and if there’s any hint of gossip, she’s all over it. Is she trying to “protect” John Baird instead? Is everyone too polite to talk about it? What gives? (And on a personal note, I’m glad that I can stop tiptoeing around this elephant in the room now.)

The Conservatives are attacking Elections Canada again because the Liberal leadership candidates from 2006 got extensions on their loan repayments. Apparently it shows signs of bias. As opposed to what? Simply having the outstanding debt declared donations? At least they have a chance of repaying the money now.

Coming out of his party’s roundtables on international development, Michael Ignatieff says that if Harper is serious about maternal and child health abroad, he needs to make sure those commitments are free from ideology. In other words, accessibility to contraception and abortions for women in developing nations. Oh, dear — I’ll bet that Charles McVety would disapprove, and given that this government seems to do his bidding an awful lot, we’ll be seeing aid dollars replete with ideology.

The NDP are calling for a Royal Commission into violence in sports. Um, okay. And is the next step setting up a separate ombudsman office for that too?

Incidentally, 52 other aid groups have signed a letter of support for the embattled Rights and Democracy.

Her Excellency has made a statement to mark Black History Month. So have the Liberals, the NDP, the Green Party, and on behalf of the government, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney. Logically, it should have been the heritage minister, but it seems they’ve somehow hived off multiculturalism to give it to Kenney.

Up today — it’s all about informal committee hearings, apparently, as the special committee on Afghanistan hears from witnesses “unofficially,” and the foreign affairs committee hears from Abousfian Abdelrazik “unofficially.” And both committees will be minus Conservative members, of course, in the strange netherworld between Parliaments.

The Canada 2020 Speakers’ Series is hosting a federal pre-budget debate featuring John Manley, Kevin Page and the former deputy minister of finance. Should be interesting (but how much do you want to bet that the consensus is going to be that the government’s projections are the stuff of fairy tales?)

And the Liberal roundtable du jour is White Collar Crime with MPs Andrew Kania and Francis Scarpaleggia.
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