The Weekly Writ for Jan. 25
Mixed poll signals for the Liberals; a new challenger for Andrew Furey; and the rise of Jack Layton.
Welcome to the Weekly Writ, a round-up of the latest federal and provincial polls, election news and political history that lands in your inbox every Wednesday morning.
It certainly feels like this will be the year of federal-provincial relations — or dysfunction.
We’re not even one month into this year and already the contours of 2023’s bickering between the premiers and the prime minister are coming into focus.
On the one hand, there could be progress on the health front as the two levels of government are reportedly getting closer to a deal that would increase the Canada Health Transfer. That’s terrific news for a health care system that is on life support, as well as for federal-provincial relations. This has long been one of the biggest bones of contention between the two levels of government.
On the other hand, Quebec Premier François Legault has bristled at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s criticism of the use of the notwithstanding clause. While Trudeau’s comments might not have been targeted specifically at Legault after Ontario Premier Doug Ford toyed with the idea in 2022, this is a thorny issue in Quebec as the notwithstanding clause has been used to protect French language legislation and Bill 21 — things that are popular in a province that, Legault reminds us, never signed the constitution.
And then we have the war of words over the so-called ‘just transition’ plan the federal government is working on to transition energy workers into greener jobs. This has given Alberta Premier Danielle Smith something to run against in the next election campaign, so much so that opposition leader Rachel Notley has tried to neutralize the issue with criticisms of her own.
Politically, some of this is just the usual back-and-forth between federal and provincial governments. But ‘just transition’ could prove to be something that moves votes in Alberta. Provincial governments have a long history of blasting Ottawa to win elections. It’s a bit of a failure on the part of the federal government whenever they actually provide the ammunition.
Now, to what is in this week’s instalment of the Weekly Writ:
News out of Ontario, where a provincial vacancy sets up an interesting byelection, and from Newfoundland and Labrador, where a new hat has been thrown into the PC leadership ring.
Polls on federal voting intentions and what to do with 24 Sussex.
The national race would be tight if the election were held today.
We visit the Edmonton suburbs for our riding profile.
Jack Layton hits the national stage in the #EveryElectionProject.
A milestone of sorts for Heather Stefanson.
Let’s get to it!