Trudeau and Garneau stake their turf: Politics on TV, Sunday Dec. 2 edition

Question Period talks to Trudeau and Garneau, while the West Block visits the west coast

Message of the day

“The Northern Gateway pipeline remains a challenge for British Columbians.”

Hot Topics

  1. Liberal leadership candidates Trudeau and Garneau
  2. James Moore
  3. Climate change negotiations in Doha

Questions not answered

  • What does Peter Kent hope to accomplish at the Doha climate conference?

Liberal leadership:

After his national radio debut as a leadership candidate on Saturday, Justin Trudeau had his first major TV interview on Question Period. Trudeau said that he never had any expectation the race would be easy, and he’s running because of a need for generational change in the party. Trudeau said that he doesn’t think a “strategic cooperation” discussion will be necessary at the next election because he doesn’t see a response to the “left” or “right” dynamic as he does to the need for pragmatic decisions. Trudeau says that his campaign is centred on the idea that for Canada to prosper, the middle class needs to flourish, which is both an economic and cultural argument, and the reason why the emphasis is on foreign trade, something he doesn’t see the other parties dealing with effectively.

Kevin Newman then spoke with leadership contender Marc Garneau, who joked about embarking on a “new mission.” On the topic of the Nexen takeover, Garneau said that he is in favour under certain conditions, which means some kind of concessions on the Chinese side about Canadians investing there. He also agrees with the need to put a price on carbon, but has no model in mind, noting that the government’s regulatory approach will cost consumers just as much. He also said that he feels that generational change is a sham issue where his age is concerned, noting his own children – he has 36-year-old twins as well as teenagers at home, which puts him in touch with the generations.

When CTV QP’s The Scrum weighed in, Craig Oliver said that Trudeau’s Friday comments on the failure of the long-gun registry is both Liberal apostasy and reaching out to Alberta. Bob Fife said that Trudeau can’t be taken as a lightweight because he is showing policy depth and the determination to win. Gloria Galloway noted that Alberta has equal weight in this contest and can’t be written off as they could in a federal election. John Ivison said that Trudeau showed some contradictions, such as being for increased trade but opposing Northern Gateway, while noting that many candidates including Garneau and Martha Hall Findlay are staking out more fiscally conservative positions to attract Red Tory votes.

James Moore:

As part of their visit to the west coast, The West Block spoke with Heritage minister James Moore in a wide-ranging interview. Moore says that he doesn’t think we’re doing enough to teach history in this country, but the federal government has a limited number of ways to help because education is provincial responsibility, which is why they are rebranding the Museum of Civilization. On the Northern Gateway pipeline, Moore spoke about the importance for companies like Enbridge to engage with Canadians in general, and regarding Trans-Pacific Partnership talks, Moore said that all trade liberalization works because Canada can compete and win in world markets.

Climate change conference:

Question Period took a look at the current state of negotiations about a new climate treaty at Doha, and brought in an MP panel of Michelle Rempel, Megan Leslie and Kirsty Duncan to discuss the issue. Leslie said that adaptation is an important piece that Canada needs to be a part of, but that she is not heartened by Kent saying this is not a pledging conference to help these other countries. Rempel said that the government has committed hundreds of millions of international aid in climate change adaptation in places like Haiti and Ethiopia, which has long-term environmental and economic impacts. Duncan said that the government is exaggerating its accomplishments, ignoring the scope of the problem, and that the sector-by-sector approach is going too slow – only two sectors have been regulated in six years.

Worth Noting:

  • BC NDP leader Adrian Dix said that he will rescind the equivalency agreement on the Northern Gateway pipeline in order to ensure there is a provincial process in place, and that he may not reach a balanced budget in the first term but it is important to set clear priorities and know they can’t do everything.
  • Jimmy Pattison, CEO of Jim Pattison Group and Canada’s 5th richest person, said that Canada can do more in the Asian markets but it will take time to develop because of the cultural differences, and that businesses are sitting on their cash reserves because of the uncertain economy.
  • Bob Fife said that CFIA needs to be moved under the health portfolio, but Gloria Galloway said they won’t do it because it will look like an admission of wrongdoing.
  • John Ivison said that the forthcoming KPMG report the costs of the F-35s until 2052, and the government is signalling its retreat from the planes, as evidenced by General Tom Lawson saying they’re the not the only planes while at a Commons Committee last week.

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