So the F-35s are suddenly a big deal again. First Power Play gets a leaked tidbit from the KPMG report that says the costs are more in the $30-40 billion range, and then PostMedia reported that the government had cancelled the F-35 purchase entirely. This then prompted the PMO to issue a quick denial, that they were committed to going through with the Seven-Point Action Plan™ of the procurement secretariat, which basically means that the F-35 is no longer being sole-sourced, but will have to compete with the other choices out there, like the Super Hornet (which is widely touted as a better choice for Canadian needs to in the first place). Oh, and it looks like Rona Ambrose has promised the KPMG report will be tabled before the House rises – but my cynical side says that it will be on the actual day that happens.
Despite the government’s hand-picked advisory panel on firearms recommending that there be some relaxation of prohibited firearms into the “restricted” category – apparently for the sake of souvenir handguns brought back during the two World Wars – Harper has said thanks but no thanks, and is distancing himself from many of the panel’s recommendations. (In fact, Harper was downright reasonable and cooperative on the topic in QP yesterday, which was a rare and welcome sight).
Uh oh – the Centre Block will be in danger of total systems failure within seven years. Let’s hope that the West Block renovations and the construction of the temporary House of Commons in the glassed-in courtyard will remain on time and on-budget before so that they can make the orderly transition out before that happens.
The Senate has launched an internal audit on primary residence claims after the news stories in the past few weeks on questionable claims being made. While some expect little to come of this because of the somewhat vague rules, the Senate is fairly sensitive to the criticism that it receives, so they may decide to come down on this with a vengeance. After all, controversy caused them to make their attendance records public – unlike the Commons.
Economist Stephen Gordon looks at why the Bank of Canada is holding interest rates low.
Peter Van Loan apologised for wagging his finger and dropping f-bombs in Wednesday’s altercation in the Chamber. Thomas Mulcair and the NDP did not feel they had anything to apologise for in return and maintain that Mulcair did not return any f-bombs of his own.
Here is your recap of the political shows, and lots of talk about the F-35s and gun control.
And with tempers flaring and sitting days quickly counting down on the calendar, here are ten things that will land you on Parliament’s naughty list.