By Graeme MacKay – Tuesday November 18, 2014
Liberals win in Whitby-Oshawa (second place)
Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives survived a tough fight with the Liberals on Monday night to hold on to a seat with symbolic and sentimental significance — the Whitby-Oshawa riding held for a decade by the late finance minister, Jim Flaherty.
Conservatives kept the riding and preserved Flaherty’s legacy, but the margin of victory was nowhere near as wide as what the former finance minister enjoyed after first being elected in 2006.
Justin Trudeau’s Liberals strongly chipped away at the Conservative stronghold, with Celina Caesar-Chavannes in a neck-and-neck race all night with the Tory candidate, former Whitby mayor Pat Perkins.
With nearly all the results in late Monday night, the Conservatives and Liberals were separated by less than eight percentage points.
The closeness of the race will buoy Liberal hopes for the 2015 election, while potentially sending a chill through the ruling Conservatives’ hopes for retaining power after the next general vote.
The New Democrats trailed far behind in third place, which will also prompt some hard thinking in NDP circles next year. (Source: Toronto Star)
Last night’s federal byelections wrap up #cdnpoli
— Graeme MacKay (@mackaycartoons) November 18, 2014
Flaherty’s state funeral to be held at Toronto’s St. James cathedral
Jim Flaherty’s state funeral is being held at Toronto’s St. James Cathedral on Wednesday.
Canadian Heritage is inviting Canadians to pay their respects to the former finance minister who died suddenly in his Ottawa condo last week.
Flaherty’s funeral will be held at 3 p.m. on Wednesday at St. James cathedral at 65 Church Street in downtown Toronto.
Canadian Heritage says Flaherty’s family appreciates all the expressions of support and condolences and asks that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Abilities Centre.
Flaherty died of a heart attack late last week, less than a month following his retirement after serving as Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s finance minister since 2006.
He’ll become the latest in a tradition of Canadian state funerals that began in 1868 with Thomas D’Arcy McGee, an Irish-born nationalist who became an MP and was assassinated on the streets of Ottawa after a late-night House of Commons debate.
Jack Layton, the late NDP leader who was opposition leader when he died in August 2011, was also given a state funeral.
It is an honour normally reserved for current and former governors general, prime ministers and sitting members of cabinet — although a state funeral may be offered to any eminent Canadian at the discretion of the prime minister.
McGee, Layton, and now Flaherty, are the only three Canadians accorded a state funeral since Confederation beyond the prescribed list, according to a list provided by Canadian Heritage. Lincoln Alexander, former lieutenant-governor of Ontario and Canada’s first black MP, received a rare provincial state funeral in 2012. (Source: CBC News)
Posted as the cartoon of the day on Wednesday, April 16, 2014, and Yahoo News Canada.
— mackaycartoons (@mackaycartoons) April 15, 2014
Jim Flaherty’s personal touch was a rarity on Parliament Hill: Greg Weston
Jim Flaherty was promising improvements to a federal disability savings plan that helps parents of special needs children when the tears started welling behind his glasses, a few drops at first, then more and more until the nation’s finance minister was openly sobbing on live television.
“The politician lost to the parent on that one,” he later told a friend.
Thursday, it was his critics’ turn to cry.
One after another, opposition MPs who have made a career of publicly savaging Flaherty across the floor of the Commons were dissolving in tearful grief over the sudden death of a man they now call a friend.
It was an extraordinary sight rarely seen in Canadian politics, MPs of all political stripes clearly mourning more than the loss of a fellow parliamentarian.
In Jim Flaherty, their loss seemed deeply personal.
NDP MP Charlie Angus, a well-known Commons scrapper, started to tell a story about Flaherty, but fell apart in tears before he could finish.
Liberal finance critic Ralph Goodale said Flaherty had the extraordinary ability to get into a no-holds-barred donnybrook in Parliament “but somehow managed to leave you more chuckling than angry.”
Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said tearfully: “I disagreed with his policies, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t very, very fond of him.”
One of Flaherty’s long-time loyal aides, Chisholm Pothier, says in many ways the affable former finance minister was “an old-style politician,” a throwback to the days when MPs could be foes in the Commons and still be friends at the bar.
Pothier says Flaherty wouldn’t hesitate to invite one of the opposition finance critics out for a drink. He liked most of them. And they liked him. (Source: CBC News)
Joe Oliver to replace Jim Flaherty as finance minister
Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver will become the federal government’s new finance minister, replacing Jim Flaherty who announced his resignation earlier on Tuesday, CBC News has learned.
Oliver will be named finance minister on Wednesday in Ottawa.
The Toronto MP is a relative newcomer to politics, having been elected in 2011. But he was quickly promoted into cabinet, taking over the natural resources ministry, which included the important Keystone pipeline file.
Oliver may be a compatible choice for Bay Street, which seeks continuity and stability. Oliver spent most of his career as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch and, at one time, was president and chief executive officer of the Investment Dealers Association of Canada.
He was also executive director of the Ontario Securities Commission.
His schooling includes an MBA from the Harvard Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Civil Law at McGill University.
Oliver, who is fluently bilingual, will become Harper’s second finance minister — Flaherty having held the position since the Tories came into power. In a statement, Flaherty said he was resigning from cabinet to prepare for work in the private sector.
Oliver, who at the age of 73 has no leadership aspirations, could also be considered a safe choice, as the position would certainly improve the chances of a potential candidate to eventually replace the prime minister.
Oliver will also be positioned to deliver a balanced budget, which is expected next year. (Source: CBC News)
Posted to National Newswatch.