Roundup: Applying the Rathgeber principle

Former Conservative MP Brent Rathgeber is pleased that the Senate blocked the union transparency bill, and is similarly happy that they called it the “Rathgeber amendment.” In his blog post, he rather gleefully calls it a stick in the eye of the PMO, and praise the Senators for not only doing their constitutional duty, but for pointing out the absurdity of the PMO looking for transparency from others when it wouldn’t apply it to their own mandarins. Tim Harper and John Ivison both look at the Senate demonstrating their mettle, and proving that they’re not simply there to rubber stamp bills.

The first of our new Chinook Helicopters arrived in Canada today – just in time to deploy to Afghanistan, like they were intended for. Oh, wait— Yeah, these were ordered in 2006 and were supposed to be delivered in 2008 and then weren’t, at which point we bought six second-hand ones from the Americans to deploy, and we’ve finally taken possession of the first of the new choppers in 2013. Canadian procurement processes FTW!

A government briefing has offered a frank assessment of the state of First Nations in Northern Ontario, and the challenges they’ll need to overcome if they’re to benefit from the development of the Ring of Fire region in the area. But one positive is that this is an attempt to learn from the mistakes made in the oil sands areas with regards to how First Nations were consulted (or not) in those areas.

Métis organisations are complaining that a Senate committee report in to the definition of Métis identity in the wake of that Supreme Court ruling just muddies the waters. The report does point to inequalities faced and recommends further study, but these Métis groups want action – err, except it would seem to me that you would want clear definitions before you to and take action, would you not?

Peter MacKay insists that he’s not leaving politics and that he wants to keep his current cabinet post – making yet another case of ministers publicly lobbying to keep their jobs, which is a rather unusual turn of events.

CIDA is no more, now officially folded into Foreign Affairs. The new ministry is titled the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, or DFATD.

The Mental Health Commission has come out with a report on the toll being faced by caregivers to those with mental health issues, and how that burden can end up impacting on their own mental health.

The Quebec Court of Appeal has said that the province has no right to the federal long-gun registry data. The province plans to appeal to the Supreme Court.

The Toronto Star finds yet more campaign expenses that Senator Duffy was repaid while claiming to be on Senate business.

Maclean’s compiles twenty unanswered questions from the spring sitting of Parliament.

In the event you missed it, an American study has proved that diluted bitumen is no more corrosive or dangerous to transport by pipeline than regular crude, which could be a plus in the column for the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline.

And the Governor General awarded Chris Hadfield the Meritorious Service (civilian) medal yesterday.