Paul Wells

Maclean’s senior writer Paul Wells writes about politics across Canada and abroad. Except sometimes he ignores politics and writes about music or something else.
Charest arrives with his wife Michele Dionne for an event with potential caucus supporters in Ottawa, on March 2, 2022 (Justin Tang/CP)
Ottawa

What goes around comes around and its name is Charest

Paul Wells: Nothing worse can happen to Jean Charest than has already happened to him, many times. The real danger is the looming fight between him and Pierre Poilievre.
Trudeau listens as Ng speaks at a news conference on the Canadian Digital Adoption Program at Bayview Yards in Ottawa, on March 3, 2022 (Justin Tang/CP)
Ottawa

News from Canada’s critical digital business revolution!

Paul Wells: Are you the owner of a small business with no access to Google or a smartphone? At last, there’s a big new government program ready to help.
Justin Trudeau walks to a news conference after police ended three weeks of occupation of the capital by protesters seeking to end coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine mandates in Ottawa, Feb. 21, 2022. (Blair Gable/Reuters)
Ottawa

The truckers brought chaos to Ottawa. What can we learn from them?

Paul Wells: How the misguided fuelling of an ‘us’ versus ‘them’ mentality gave us chaos and a hot tub on Parliament Hill
Trudeau is seen during a news conference where he announced the Emergencies Act will be invoked to deal with protests, on Feb. 14, 2022 in Ottawa (Adrian Wyld/CP)
Ottawa

The Emergencies Act: What’s ’seriously endangered’?

Paul Wells: Five PMs have had the Emergencies Act and declined to use it. The question now is whether Trudeau has met the ’stringent test’ laid out 34 years ago.
Lightbound speaks about COVID restrictions during a news conference on Feb. 8, 2022 in Ottawa (Adrian Wyld/CP)
Ottawa

The Joël Lightbound crisis in the Liberal Party

Paul Wells: The MP’s astonishing criticism of Liberal policy on COVID restrictions is the most serious threat to Trudeau’s leadership since Jane Philpott quit the federal cabinet
O'Toole is lead into the House of Commons by Harper before the start of Question Period on Dec. 12, 2012 (Fred Chartrand/CP)
Ottawa

O’Toole is out. Meet the new new new new Conservatives

Paul Wells: What lessons does Erin O’Toole offer for the Conservatives? The numbers are against them and the firewall against U.S. conservatism has collapsed.
O’Toole leaves a news conference on Jan. 24, 2022 in Ottawa (Adrian Wyld/CP)
Ottawa

Erin O’Toole and the Multiverse of Madness

Paul Wells: Historically, when Conservatives lose they start to consider radical shifts. The question facing O’Toole was always whether he could hold the party together.
Anand, Trudeau and Joly listen to Freeland speak during a media availability following a cabinet retreat, on Jan. 26, 2022 (Adrian Wyld/CP)
Ottawa

No, really, we’re totally fighting for democracy

Paul Wells: On Ukraine, the Liberal government’s actions and rhetoric are starkly out of proportion. It is government by champion self-aggrandizers.
Ukraine's Prime Minister Denis Shmygal and Minister of Foreign Affairs Melanie Joly greet each other during their meeting in Kyiv, Ukraine on Jan. 17, 2022. (Ukrainian Prime Minister Press Office via AP)
Canada

This just in: The PM has been phoning cabinet ministers

Paul Wells: Canada faces some hard questions on the Ukraine file. The latest release from the PMO suggests this government has nothing to say about it.
Legault leaves a news conference in Montreal, on Dec. 30, 2021 (Graham Hughes/CP)
Ottawa

I have questions about le unvax tax

Paul Wells: There’s at least a decent case to be made for François Legault’s plan to tax unvaccinated Quebecers. But don’t be surprised if he drops the idea.