Roundup: Heir to the Canadian throne

So there we have it – a future King of Canada has been born, and everyone’s delighted. No, seriously – everyone, though the NDP’s official statement of “warmest congratulations” was pretty lukewarm. And it was even more disappointing that the official Canadian Crown Twitter account was using the #BritishMonarchy hashtag rather than, you know, the Canadian Monarchy, which this baby is also heir to. Also, it seems that royal babies are good for business. Who knew?

Quebec’s attorney general has decided to weigh in on the challenge of the royal succession bill at the Quebec Superior Court, and he too believes that the provinces have a role in making such a change, as the constitution would otherwise indicate. The federal government says it will fight the challenge, since they would rather let political expedience trump the constitution.

The new “crowns and pips” insignias for the Canadian Army will basically pay for themselves, as they’re less expensive than the previous insignia, apparently. Now if only we could get journalists to quit referring to them as symbols of the British monarchy when they’re in fact symbols of the Canadian monarchy.

The New Brunswick charity Grace Foundation, which had previously complained about Justin Trudeau’s speaking fee, has dropped their complaint and has dismissed the board members who brought the complaints forward. Paul Wells put it best when he tweeted that this has been the Conservatives’ biggest own-goal since the Cadman suit.

The Interim Parliamentary Budget Officer still isn’t getting the information she’s requested, despite invoking the Speakers of the Commons and the Senate. Looks like she may be going back go court.

In case you were worried about it, the Senate is not helping to pay the legal bills of Senators Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin, as is Senator Mac Harb in his own legal challenge of his spending audits. The $4000 in legal aid that Senator Patrick Brazeau did receive is expected to be reimbursed as well.

Speaking of Mike Duffy, the director of political operations for the Conservative party also denies that she was aware of the plan to have the party cover his errant expenses before they realised that the total tab was over $90,000 and balked. It does seem, however, that the RCMP has been asking questions of the PMO, and anonymous sources will confirm this while official sources deny it. Very interesting.

Ruh-roh! It looks like the Director of Public Prosecutions is now deciding whether or not to lay charges against Conservative MP Dean Del Mastro over his 2008 election expense claims. I guess this really wasn’t “case closed” like he tried to argue a few weeks ago (which included waterworks on the floor of the House in a claim that his privileges were being breached). Oh, and Shelly Glover insists that her election spending controversy is “behind her,” even though she remains $2000 above the limit.

The federal government announced some $60 million in aid for Lac-Mégantic yesterday.

Kady O’Malley looks at the confusing mess that is the multiculturalism file post-cabinet shuffle – it remains part of the Department of Citizenship and Immigration, and yet Jason Kenney retains the responsibility for it, which he shares with Tim Uppal, who reports to Kenney and not Chris Alexander, the Minister for Immigration. And yeah, no one’s quite sure who has signing authority or responsibility. Good governance, everybody!

A group of “lost Canadians” – born in England during the war, and returned to Canada with their Canadian fathers and war bride mothers afterward, but never awarded Canadian citizenship – are heading to court to try and get their citizenship resolved.

Emmett MacFarlane writes about how we need to actually have an idea of what we want a reformed Senate to look like, rather than just insist that “reform” means elections, and all of the consequences and partisan buffoonery that follow.

Andrew Coyne notes the utter lack of media attention to the fact that the poverty levels in this country have dropped to historically low levels, and wonders why nobody will pay attention to that good news.

And Michael deAdder has some fantastic Harper-as-Darth-Vader cabinet shuffle cartoons.

Shameless self-promotion alert: I have a story over on the PostMedia wire about how members of the royal family are now eligible to become “extraordinary members” of the Order of Canada and the Order of Military Merit.