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Monday, December 6, 2021

Liberals will launch a bid to restore remote sessions

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With the plans of the minority liberal government having been formally presented to Canadians through the speech from the throne delivered by Governor Gen. Mary Simon yesterday afternoon, there is one last “first” to come now that the formal rites and rituals accompanying the launch of a new session have been crossed off the list: namely, the 44th Parliament’s inaugural question period.

For the first time since the House of Commons closed for the summer in mid-June, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will face his counterparts across the aisle in person this afternoon as his opposition rivals question him about what was – and, equally crucial, was not – included in the throne speech, as well as other topics in the Political radar, from the federal response to the ongoing climate crisis on the West Coast to rising interest rates to the last steps – back and forth – in indigenous reconciliation. (2 PM)

However, before that begins, most MPs will spend the morning behind the tightly closed doors of their respective meeting rooms, where the four parties are scheduled to hold their regularly scheduled Wednesday meetings.

While most proceedings will, as always, take place off-camera, the curators will allow reporters to enter the room for the first few minutes of their private meeting as Erin O’Toole rallies troops for the next four weeks of sessions. (09:30 AM)

In the meantime, New Democratic Leader Jagmeet Singh has scheduled a post-caucus media availability. (12 PM)

Back in the chamber, after the question period concludes, MPs are ready to launch what seems almost certain to be a lengthy and politically charged debate on the government’s proposal to reestablish the hybrid session format adopted during parliament. above, which would allow MPs to participate in all House proceedings via webcam, as well as re-authorize the use of the remote voting app introduced at the same time. (3 PM)

Finally, the new Democrats are expected to back the proposal, which virtually guarantees its final approval, but both the Conservatives and the Bloc Québécois are strongly in favor of resuming traditional sessions in person, and will almost certainly try to drag out the debate. .

That, in turn, could lead the government to invoke the shutdown to force a vote before the weekend, which would also require the support of at least one other party to be successful.

UPGRADE: According to your daily itinerary, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland will join with Minister of Employment Carla Qualtrough for a mid-afternoon press conference, which, given the scheduling and timing, will likely be related to legislation that was notified yesterday that would expand – and, in some cases, renew – pandemic benefits and support programs. (4:30 PM)

IN AND AROUND THE HILL

the Parliamentary Budget Office publishes an updated estimate on “the cost of implementation structured intervention units in federal penitentiary institutions, “which, according to the notice, was prepared at the request of Senator Kim Padrino, a long-time defender of prisoners’ rights. (9 a. M.)

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