The Conservatives will choose a new leader in September
March 3 Politics Insider: Jean Charest rubs shoulders with the Conservatives as he mulls a leadership race; the UN General Assembly officially “deplores” Russia’s invasion of Ukraine; Petro Poroshenko asks the UN to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine
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Setback for Poilievre: The Conservatives will choose a new leader on September 10Radio Canada reported late Wednesday. The deadline for joining will be June 3. Supporters of Pierre Poilievre had called for a deadline in May and a convention in June. Potential candidates on the PC side, including Patrick Brown, Tasha Kheiriddin, Peter MacKay and John Charest preferred a later date, which might allow them to catch up Pierre Poilievre, which seems to have a head start among the existing members. His potential rivals were waiting for the rules announcement before deciding to throw their hats in the ring.
Castle evening: Charest was in Ottawa Wednesday night to meet with members of the CPC caucus, likely a preliminary step to announcing his candidacy. While toast with the curators at the Château Laurier, the curators in the Poilievre camp attacked him on Twitter.
On Monday, the Permanent Anti-Corruption Unit closed the Mâchurer investigation into the financing of the Liberal Party of Quebec when the party was led by Mr. Charest, after eight years of unsuccessful prosecution. It is therefore one less obstacle for his candidacy for the leadership of the Conservative Party.
Where is Chong going? Michael Chong did not rule out running, CP reports.
No to war: The UN General Assembly voted 141 to 5 on Wednesday to ‘deplore’ the Russian invasion of Ukraine, according to the Globe reportsan unusual show of unity.
“The message from the General Assembly is loud and clear,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told reporters after Wednesday’s vote. “End hostilities in Ukraine – now. Silence the guns – now. Open the door to dialogue and diplomacy – now.
No-fly request: In a meeting with CBC Wednesday, the former Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko pleaded with Canada and its NATO allies to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine as Russia steps up its aerial bombardment: “We are fighting for security in Europe here, we are fighting for France, for Germany, for Poland, for Spain. And can you imagine that we are fighting here for Canada.
NATO leaders say a no-fly zone could amount to a direct confrontation between NATO and the Russian military, which could lead to nuclear war, and that is not being considered.
Freeland warned them: In the World, Konrad Yakabuski at an interesting column on the role played by Chrystia Freeland in Canada’s response to the war in Ukraine. Freeland drew on a lifetime of experience in pushing for sanctions against Russia.
According to a Reuters reportMs Freeland spoke directly to Russia’s finance minister Anton Siluanov and central bank governor Elvira Nabiullina at a Feb. 18 meeting of Group of Twenty finance officials, warning the pair not to doubt the determination of “like-minded democracies” to punish Russia if it invades Ukraine. Politics reported Sunday that Ms Freeland had spent much of the past week “pushing the idea of sanctioning the central bank” with her Group of Seven colleagues.
On the way to war: the World also a story about an 18-year-old man from Toronto who traveled to Ukraine hoping to fight for his country.
Still in jail: convoy leader Tamara Lich argued in court on Wednesday that the judge who denied her bail should not have ruled on the case because she ran for the Liberals in 2011, the Star reports. Lich’s next hearing will be on March 7.
Convoy course: In Maclean’s, Paul Wells has a thoughtful meditation on the time of the convoy in Ottawa.
The Freedom Convoy entered Canada’s fourth largest city in late January on a pile of threats, some more subtle than others, to Canada’s civil order and to people who have had the misfortune to reside where the occupants wanted to park. Siege organizers dusted off a “memorandum of understanding,” already drafted before the idea of a trucking convoy came to them, that called on the Senate and the governor general to remove Justin Trudeau from his post as prime minister. It is not something the Senate and the Governor General can do. So it was really a memorandum of misunderstanding, or of not wanting to understand. Organizers eventually removed the memorandum from their website, but for weeks refused to withdraw from the center of Canada’s capital.
Wells notes that one of the outstanding features of the Ottawa convoy camp was its speed, compared to the way things usually work in the city.
Next to the hot tub is the former United States Embassy, three stories of Indiana limestone directly facing the Center Block. Since 1999 it has stood empty as there is a new, much larger embassy around the corner. In the early 2000s, someone decided that the grand old building should become the National Portrait Gallery of Canada. When the curators came to power in 2006, I guess they were worried about which portraits would or wouldn’t go in the thing, so they spent almost a decade making sure it wouldn’t be a gallery of portraits. When the Liberals came back in 2015, they decided this should be a space for Indigenous people. There have been substantial disagreements over what exactly this should entail. So, for 23 years now, this prime real estate has lain fallow. For a while, I’ve imagined the old embassy as a stop on a paralysis tour of Ottawa that I could organize for tourists.
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