Politics on TV: Keystone XL fallout and Kingsley talks Penashue

The three things you need to see

by Aaron Wherry

Here are the three things you should not have missed:

  1. American concerns about Keystone XL
  2. Jean-Pierre Kingsley on Penashue’s electoral violations
  3. IRPP’s report on robocall regulations

Keystone XL:

After US Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi expressed doubts about the Keystone XL Pipeline, Power & Politics spoke with Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, who said that most US legislators believe the project is important. Oliver said that Mulcair’s visit was not helpful and may have undermined the project, regardless of what he explicitly said to Pelosi. Hannah Thibedeau then spoke with MPs Peter Julian and Massimo Pacetti for their reactions. Julian said that Mulcair’s visit was about opening doors and meeting with stakeholders, and that the Harper government’s own inaction on climate change was undermining their case for Keystone XL. Macetti noted that the press clippings show that Mulcair did a good job of ruining Canada’s reputation in Washington, and that the question for Liberals is how many jobs Keystone XL will create, as the numbers diverge wildly. Over on Power Play, Don Martin spoke with US Republican Senator John Hoeven, who is sponsoring a bill to approve the project with bi-partisan support, feeling that it has taken too long for approval.

Jean-Pierre Kingsley:

Hannah Thibedeau spoke with former Chief Electoral Officer Jean-Pierre Kingsley about Peter Penashue’s resignation, and Kingsley said that it’s a very big deal as the resignation signals that laws were broken. Kingsley said that the Commissioner of Elections will need to complete his investigation and send his recommendation to the Director of Public Prosecutions, and then go before a court if charges are laid – something that is unlikely to happen in the six months before a by-election needs to be called. Kingsley said that as the candidate, Penashue signed all of the forms, and that signature means something – that he too is responsible for the donations and spending. Kingsley also said that Election Canada has the resources it needs, but they may need to look at finding ways of pre-empting certain steps – like going through Public Prosecutions – in order to save some time in their processes.

Regulating robocalls:

Power Play spoke with Graham Fox, President of the Institute for the Research on Public Policy, about the IRPP’s report on regulations for tools like robocalling, but also other forms of databases now being employed by political parties. Fox said that all of the participants at the roundtable discussions agreed that steps need to be taken to ensure that these activities are monitored and regulated, which could require a response from Parliament. Fox said that currently there is no recourse if a party loses their voters’ private information, as there is nothing to compel parties to protect that information. Fox said that the debate is not about the technology, but the content.

Worth Noting:

  • Irish Ambassador Ray Bassett spoke to Don Martin about how Newfoundland is the most Irish place outside of Ireland, and other aspects of the Irish-Canadian relationship, including the size of Canadian investment in Ireland.
  • Don Martin’s Last Word paid tribute to CTV reporter Roger Smith on the occasion of his retirement.



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