November 4, 2011

PrimeTime Politics Weekend

November 4, 2011

We have coverage of the conclusion of the G20 Summit in Cannes, France. Leaders discussed the European debt crisis, as well as measures to deal with the world economy. We hear from Prime Minister Stephen Harper at the summit’s closing press conference.

Martin Stringer discusses what was achieved at the summit with Don Drummond, Matthews Fellow and Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the School of Policy Studies at Queen’s University, in Kingston.

And, Martin is joined by his journalist guests: Bill Curry, reporter for The Globe and Mail, and Susan Lunn, Parliamentary Reporter for CBC Radio. They discuss:

1. The G20 Summit:

What were Canada’s agenda items going into the summit? Were they addressed?
Or did the Greek debt crisis overshadowall else, including the follow-up from last year’s summit in Toronto?
2. Ottawa and the Provinces on the Crime Bill:
This week, the governments of Quebec and Ontario took issue with the Harper government’s omnibus crime legislation, making its way through Parliament. Premiers from both provinces spoke out against the costs they say the legislation would impose on them, and Quebec especially challenged the direction of the legislation, which it claims relies too much on punishment, and not enough on prevention and rehabilitation.

What should we make of this disagreement between Ottawa and the country’s two most populous provinces?
What about the fact that most of the western provinces and New Brunswick have been supportive of measures in the bill?
3. The G8 Legacy Fund:

This week, after weeks of attacks from the NDP opposition, Treasury Board President Tony Clement appeared before the Commons Public Accounts Committee to answer questions about his role in the granting of $50 million in projects to his riding before last year’s G8 summit in Muskoka.

The Auditor General found that rules were broken, monies were wrongly drawn from a border infrastructure fund, bureaucrats were excluded from the process, and no supporting documents were produced to justify the projects chosen. The government says it has accepted the auditor’s observations and recommendations, and learned lessons from this episode.

Did anything new come out of this week’s hearings?
Where does this issue go from here?
4. “Six Months in… ”
Stephen Harper’s majority government marked six months in power this week.

How is the government doing?
Where does Stephen Harper go from here?


image - Martin Stringer

Martin Stringer

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.