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Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre welcomed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau back to Canada as the two faced off in their first Question Period encounter since Mr. Poilievre was elected by his party.

“It’s good to see the Prime Minister here visiting Canada to fill up the gas in his private jet,” Mr. Poilievre said Thursday in the House of Commons, as he called for the government to cancel tax increases on gas, heating, food and paycheques.

Since coming to Parliament as the leader of the Official Opposition, Mr. Poilievre has been calling on the government not to raise Employment Insurance premiums, Canada Pension Plan contributions and the federal carbon price in 2023.

Mr. Trudeau, who has been in Britain to attend the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II, then in New York City for the UN General Assembly session, did not take the bait on Mr. Poilievre’s rhetorical jab.

Instead, he congratulated Mr. Poilievre on becoming opposition leader, and restated an agenda for his government that included supports for Canadians, investments in housing and dealing with climate change.

Mr. Trudeau’s government has announced a $4.6-billion affordability plan that includes a doubling of the GST credit, a boost in rental supports and an interim dental-care plan for uninsured parents with children under 12.

Through the rest of the closely watched faceoff, Mr. Trudeau and Mr. Poilievre sparred over a number of affordability issues.

Mr. Poilievre asked Mr. Trudeau about the likely increase in heating costs for Newfoundland and Labrador seniors because of the increase in the carbon tax. In response, Mr. Trudeau talked about the government’s affordability agenda, and sought Mr. Poilievre’s support.

Mr. Trudeau mentioned Mr. Poilievre’s backing of cryptocurrency. “If Canadians had followed the advice of the leader of the opposition, and invested in volatile cryptocurrencies in an attempt to ‘quote’ ‘opt out of inflation,’ they would have lost half of their savings,” he said.

Meanwhile, the federal Conservatives are saying they may support some of the Liberals’ affordability package. Deputy Ottawa Bureau Chief Bill Curry reports here.

This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Ian Bailey. It is available exclusively to our digital subscribers. If you’re reading this on the web, subscribers can sign up for the Politics newsletter and more than 20 others on our newsletter sign-up page. Have any feedback? Let us know what you think.


BLAIKIE IN PALLIATIVE CARE – Bill Blaikie, an NDP MP from 1979 to 2008, is in palliative care after being treated for kidney cancer for several years. Story here from Global News.

REMPEL-GARNER SEEKS PARLIAMENTARY PROBE – Conservative MP Michelle Rempel Garner is calling for a parliamentary probe into the extent to which inauthentic Canadian government travel documents were used during efforts to rescue people from the Taliban last year, and into the fairness of the government’s resettlement programs for Afghans. Story here.

ACCESS TO CRITICAL MINERALS ON AGENDA FOR VISIT BY SOUTH KOREAN LEADER – South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol is using an official visit to Canada to try to gain access to Canadian critical minerals that could bolster the Asian country’s high-tech and manufacturing industries as it seeks to reduce dependence on China. Story here.

GREENS MAY CURTAIL ASPECTS OF LEADERSHIP RACE – In the wake of several high-profile resignations from its leadership committee, the federal Green Party is looking at curtailing some aspects of its leadership race. Story here from CBC.

CANADIANS COULD BE `COLLATERAL DAMAGE’ OF ONLINE BILL: TIKTOK – Canadians posting videos on platforms are in danger of becoming “collateral damage” of the federal online streaming bill, TikTok Canada has warned. Story here.

JOLY OPPOSED TO EUROPEAN COUNTRIES BANNING RUSSIANS FROM VISAS – Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly says she does not support following European countries in barring Russians from getting visas, since many are likely to flee their country. Story here.

QUEBEC ELECTION – Quebec party leaders will face off one final time ahead of the Oct. 3 election during a French-language televised debate tonight. Story here. Please note: The debate will be broadcast on CPAC with English-language interpretation at 9 p.m. Eastern.

STILES SEEKING ONTARIO NDP LEADERSHIP – Marit Stiles, a former president of the federal NDP now a Toronto member of the provincial legislature, has announced a bid to lead Ontario’s New Democrats as the party looks to move forward after its disappointing showing in the June provincial election. Story here.

SNOWBIRDS CLEARED FOR TAKEOFF – The Snowbirds have been cleared for takeoff after a crash in B.C. last month forced the military’s famed aerobatics team to cancel appearances at several air shows. Story here.


TODAY IN THE COMMONS – Projected Order of Business at the House of Commons, Sept. 22, accessible here.


On Thursday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, David Parkinson – economics columnist for The Globe’s Report on Business – talks, amid concerns about inflation, about what items are getting less expensive, why groceries are still so high and whether what the Bank of Canada is doing to tamp down inflation is working. The Decibel is here.


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrived in Ottawa after the 77th session of the UN General Assembly, attended Question Period, delivered remarks in the House of Commons to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1972 hockey Summit Series, and was scheduled to attend a cabinet meeting.


Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet held a media scrum on Bill C-31, which implements dental payments to uninsured parents with children under 12, and a boost in rent supports.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, in Ottawa, held a media availability, attended Question Period and, with NDP MP Taylor Bachrach, was scheduled to speak at a rally about changing the voting age.

No schedules released for other party leaders.


B.C. Premier John Horgan and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney are leaving office with divergent levels of admiration. And François Legault has some of the lowest numbers recorded during his time as Quebec Premier. Both dynamics and others are covered in the latest Premiers’ Performance survey from the Angus Reid Institute available here.


The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on the question of why François Legault is so testy?: “It’s impossible to know what’s going on in the Premier’s mind, but it’s a good guess that he’s feeling pressure on multiple fronts in an election that is a punctuation mark on the evolution of Quebec politics since the 1995 referendum. The CAQ is competing for seats against four opposition parties that are locked in a dead heat for second place in the popular vote. The poll-aggregating site 338Canada on Wednesday had the federalist Liberal Party at 16 per cent, the right-wing Quebec Conservative Party and the left-wing Quebec Solidaire each at 15 per cent, and the separatist Parti Québécois at 13 per cent. Any one of those parties can steal votes from the CAQ and potentially lower its seat count. The one most apt to do that is the upstart Quebec Conservative Party; Mr. Legault’s partisan outbursts have likely been designed to protect his right flank. But boy how things have changed in Quebec.”

Andrew Coyne (The Globe and Mail) on how we need serious politics to match the desperately serious times: “Those are the immediate crises before us; they are not certain to come, one or all, but they are far from improbable. Meanwhile, there are those ongoing, relatively slower-burning crises to contend with: the continuing collapse, after many decades of muddling through, of the Canadian health care system; the related fiscal and economic stresses associated with population aging; oh yes, and the heating of the planet. These are, in short, serious times – the most serious that I can recall in my lifetime. They are times that do not just recommend a return to serious politics, but urgently require it.”

Tanya Talaga (The Globe and Mail) on how, as Canada mourns, Indigenous people work to repair the damage overseen by the Crown: “While millions of Canadians mourned the loss of Queen Elizabeth last week, a series of meetings at an Edmonton hotel exposed once again the two stark realities in this country. The first of eight planned National Gatherings on Unmarked Burials took place last week. But while these sessions are of profound national importance, they seem to have been barely noticed by non-Indigenous Canadians and media outlets. Instead, Canada was focused on the death of a monarch who silently presided over a swath of the residential school era. That was not lost on the 350 Indigenous leaders, survivors and community members at the hotel, who had to endure coverage of the Queen’s funeral on seemingly endless loops from lobby restaurants.”

Robyn Urback (The Globe and Mail) on the question of what’s the point of the NDP: “The question of what justifies the NDP as a distinct federal party should not be rhetorical. As it exists now, it is less an alternative option than an influencing force: a progressive nag on the Liberals’ conscience that can influence policy, but not present a viable or electable replacement – and especially not when it has committed to support the governing party for the next three years. Certainly many Canadians still support and will continue to support the New Democrats, but without much of a raison d’être, that support likely stems more from disillusionment with Mr. Trudeau and revulsion for Mr. Poilievre than it does the appeal of a radically different platform.”

Michael Ignatieff (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on praise for a young, optimistic parliamentary life cut short: “Every year, young men and women arrive in Ottawa to work in Parliament as interns, “gofers,” assistants, or parliamentary pages. They come from every region, background, and political conviction. They’re all ambitious, for themselves and for their country. Canadians owe these young people a great deal. If disillusionment or cynicism ever caused that stream of youthful ambition to dry up, our democracy would wither and die. Trevor Harrison was emblematic of that youthful optimism. In 2006, just out of Queen’s University, he showed up in my office on Parliament Hill. I was a newly elected rookie MP, learning the ropes.” Ed Note: Mr. Harrison’s obituary is here.

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