Today in Politics and Podcast: Radicalization, Bill S-3, Defence Estimates

Today in Politics and Podcast: Radicalization, Bill S-3, Defence Estimates

November 29, 2017 6amET


Should Ottawa take more steps to prevent funding from abroad that could be connected to radicalization and terrorism?

MPs are scheduled to debate a bill from Conservative MP Tony Clement (C-371).

Canadian religious, cultural, and education organizations would be barred from accepting money or gifts from foreign governments, and individuals and entities connected to them, if:

there are reasonable grounds to believe that the foreign state promotes religious intolerance, subjects its citizens to torture or other cruel punishment or engages in activities that support radicalization.”

The federal government would maintain an official list of targeted countries.

Clement has pointed to a 2015 Senate report that recommends: “The Government develop measures to prevent foreign funds from entering Canada, where such funds, donors or recipients have been linked to radicalization.”

The national security committee cited Saudi, Qatari, and Kuwaiti charities helping fund Canadian mosques and community centres — and promoting extremist ideology.

Equality and the Indian Act

The government bill (S-3) that seeks to address sex-based inequality in the Indian Act returns to the House of Commons, with MPs considering additional Senate amendments.

A 2015 court ruling struck down several parts of the 140-year-old law as unconstitutional for its separate treatment of men and women in terms of their status.

The Senate passed the latest version of S-3 earlier this month with new amendments about how retroactive the legislation would be in terms of returning Indian status to women with non-status spouses.

This, after both the Senate and House passed versions in June 2017 amidst an extension from the original court deadline.


Defence Spending

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan faces questions on his department’s latest funding plans at the Standing Committee on National Defence. LIVE ONLINE at 3:30pm ET / 12:30pm PT

He’s seeking just over $1 billion, including $335.6 million for existing capital projects, $333.1 million for a planned pay raise for Canadian Forces members, and $161.6 million for the Fixed Wing Search and Rescue Aircraft replacement project.

Sajjan may also face questions about the $54.4 million requested for the Canadian Surface Combatant program, which could see delays and potential shipyard layoffs, according to a briefing this week by government officials.

What are supplementary estimates?

Throughout the fiscal year, the government can propose additional spending beyond the Main Estimates that require parliamentary approval. They can touch on existing announcements and programs, or deal with something unplanned (a natural disaster, for instance).

-Andrew Thomson

Here’s Mark Sutcliffe with the Today in Politics podcast: