Kevin O'Leary calls out his own party: Ottawa Power Rankings

Who's up? The reality star-turned-politician, for once. Who's down? A pair of key Liberal ministers.


The ministers of foreign affairs and heritage had memorable weeks; their front-bench colleagues at industry and public safety, not so much. See who’s up and who’s down in and around Parliament Hill’s corridors of power. And check out the rest of our weekly power rankings.




Say what you will about the Shark Tank star’s grasp of, oh, let’s say, the constitutional notwithstanding clause, he does know the difference between a minor misdemeanour and serious skulduggery. The Conservative leadership contender rightly noted that the party has fined him for skipping a sanctioned debate, but hasn’t found its way to identifying and sanctioning whatever campaign was behind paying for the memberships of individuals who are supposed to ante up their own $15 to join.



Her promotion to foreign minister early this year was part of Justin Trudeau’s shuffling of top talent to the Canada-U.S. file. But Freeland’s real obsession is formerly communist Europe. She reportedly used a Washington meeting with Hungary’s foreign minister to bring up the right-wing Hungarian government’s bid to undermine Budapest’s liberal Central European University—headed by Michael Ignatieff, the former Canadian Liberal leader. Expertise well deployed.



Remember the goofiness surrounding the 2012 Diamond Jubilee medals, given out seemingly at random to mark the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s crowning? (Justin Bieber got one!) It was the heritage minister who wisely cancelled the former Harper government’s plan to give out Canada 150 medals, too. This week, some senators tried to reverse Joly’s decision before cooler heads in the upper chamber prevailed. Good moment to thank Joly for sparing us another spree of meaningless honours.




In the Tory leadership race, the Saskatchewan MP is generally regarded as an extreme long-shot—and extreme is the word. Still, Trost had a chance of staking out a role as pillar of the party’s social-conservative wing, sort of in the Stockwell Day mold. Then he said he wouldn’t march in any gay pride parades, and his campaign spokesman explained that Trost isn’t “entirely comfortable with the whole gay thing.” The next leader will now find it awkward to give Trost any prominence.



It should have been an upbeat day for the innovation minister: He was in Windsor, Ont., at Trudeau’s side, to announce a $100-million-plus contribution to a Ford engine plant. Unfortunately, the event came hard on the heels of news that Bombardier’s senior execs gave themselves nearly a 50 per cent pay hike last year—while they were securing hundreds of millions in new federal support. Not a good week to be highlighting Ottawa’s corporate largesse.



Yes, the public safety minister has stuff to do. He’s a key minister on the border-crossing file; the RCMP is his to worry about. But Federal Court Chief Justice Paul Crampton wasn’t buying the argument, made by federal lawyers in a sensitive immigration case, that Goodale was simply too busy to make a timely decision. Crampton ruled no minister “can take as many years as they see fit to respond to requests made pursuant to validly enacted legislation.” Get to it, minister.