This week, join Martin Stringer and his journalist guests: Louise Elliott, Parliamentary Reporter for CBC Radio, and John Geddes, Ottawa Bureau Chief for Maclean’s magazine. They’ll discuss:
1. The Gun Registry: The Harper government tabled its long-promised bill to scrap the federal long-gun registry. The government says it will also destroy all the information contained in the registry. Opposition parties are fighting the bill, and the Quebec government and National Assembly want to be able to retain the information to set up its own registry. We’ll look at the political fallout from this issue.
2. The Economy: This week, both the Bank of Canada and a panel of private sector economists consulted by Finance minister Jim Flaherty downgraded their forecasts of growth in the Canadian economy by 0.7%. They foresee slower growth – of around 2% – for the next two years. How bad is this news? Where does this leave the government’s plans for eliminating the deficit by 2015?
3. A Rough Ride for the New Auditor General: Both the NDP and the Liberal opposition this week declared they could not support Prime Minister Harper’s choice of Michael Ferguson as the new federal Auditor General. He comes highly recommended, having served as the former AG of New Brunswick, but he is not bilingual. How unusual a situation is this? What issues does it raise?
4. 30 More Honourable Members. The government this week announced its electoral reform legislation will increase the number of seats in the House of Commons by 30, with 15 more for Ontario, 6 more each for B.C. and Alberta, and 3 additional seats for Quebec. How well does the bill achieve its goal of reflecting the growth trends in the Canadian population? How is it playing out, politically?
5. The Latest in the NDP Leadership Race…
Also, speaking of the NDP leadership race, Martin speaks with Peggy Nash, the MP for the Toronto riding of Parkdale-High Park, who joined the race on Friday.
Having covered the Canadian political scene for more than 25 years, Martin is as politically astute as he is savvy. He joined CPAC in 1996 and has covered leadership races, political conventions and federal elections, serving as PrimeTime Politics’ Hill correspondent daily and host of the show’s Friday edition. Martin began his career as a reporter for CBC Radio in Quebec City and also worked for seven years as national and international producer for CBC Radio’s flagship show, As It Happens.