Weekly Round-Up: August 22, 2014

August 22nd, 2014 by Dan Allan

Each Friday, CIVIX provides a digest of the major events in Canadian politics.

Retirements and resignations

Sana Hassainia, the MP for the Vercheres-Les Patriotes, resigned from the NDP and will sit as an independent. Hassainia disagreed with the party’s stance on the conflict in Gaza.

Another one bites the dust. The Bloc Québécois have lost another MP as Jonquiere-Alma’s Claude Patry has indicated that he will not run in the next federal election. Jean-François Fortin resigned from the Bloc caucus just last week.

The retirements and resignations aren’t limited to the opposition side of the House of Commons. Conservative MPs Rick Norlock (from Northumberland-Quinte) and Brian Storseth (from Westlock-St. Paul) will not be seeking re-election.

The New Brunswick election is underway!

The 38th New Brunswick general election is underway! Premier David Alward met with the lieutenant-governor on Monday and the writs of election were issued yesterday. Alward and the PC have already pulled out of the leaders’ debate due to their disagreement with the inclusion of two minor parties.

The province goes to the poll on September 22. You can read our election preview for more information or visit the new and improved Elections New Brunswick website.

Should MPs be required to tweet in both languages?

Foreign Minister John Baird has tweeted his way into hot water. Canada’s commissioner of official languages has launched an investigation related to a complaint that Baird tweets primarily in English. The account in question, @HonJohnBaird, is the minister’s personal account.

Party leadership update

In Alberta, PC leadership candidate Jim Prentice announced that he would immediately run in a by-election if he became premier next month. Prentice also announced that, if elected, he would introduce term limits on provincial politicians (three terms for MLAs, and two for premiers).

The Saskatchewan Liberal Party has a new leader as Darrin Lamoureux was acclaimed for the position.

Possible electoral changes

Would voting on weekends increase turnout? That’s just one idea ‘floated’ by Elections Ontario in their most recent annual report.

A fire hydrant can’t technically run for mayor, but that didn’t stop the Globe and Mail from endorsing one in Toronto.

If you can drive at 16, why can’t you vote? One London, Ontario council candidate would extend voting rights if elected.

What we’ve been up to

We are very excited to welcome Diana MacVey and Emily Barrette to our team this week!

We will be working with Informed Vote Toronto on an ESL education pilot project during the upcoming Toronto municipal election. Learn more about it here.

For ongoing updates, follow us on Twitter at @CIVIX_Canada.

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