Randall's Feed
Mar 28, 2014

Quebec separatist leader says referendum not wanted, for now

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Quebec citizens do not want a referendum on leaving Canada at the moment, separatist leader Pauline Marois said on Thursday, repeating that as long as that is the case she would not launch one if she is re-elected premier of the province.

“I am a determined woman, you know, but I am also a woman who can listen,” Marois told reporters after a leaders’ debate ahead of the April 7 provincial election.

Mar 26, 2014

Canada sets bill to force minimum rail grain shipments as backlog builds

OTTAWA/WINNIPEG, Manitoba, March 26 (Reuters) – The Canadian
government introduced legislation on Wednesday that will allow
it to set minimum levels of grain that railways must ship each
year to avoid the huge crop backlogs that have hurt farmers’
cash flow this winter.

The Conservative government earlier this month ordered the
country’s two dominant railroads, Canadian National Railway Co
and Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd, to double
their weekly grain volumes to 1 million tonnes combined over a
four-week period to clear the massive crop logjam.

Mar 26, 2014

Canada exacts C$6.7 billion from public retirees for health costs

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Retired federal workers will pay more of their supplemental health costs under an agreement with the Canadian government intended to align the public sector with the private sector, Treasury Board President Tony Clement said on Wednesday.

Retirees’ contributions will rise to 50 percent of the cost of their health plan from 25 percent now. The supplement plan pays for drugs, eye-glasses and other items not covered by the general medical care plan that is free for all Canadians. Low-income pensioners will not be affected.

Mar 25, 2014

Support for Quebec separatists sinks as election nears: poll

OTTAWA (Reuters) – The governing separatist Parti Quebecois would lose next month’s Quebec provincial election if it were held now, a poll released on Tuesday showed, a casualty of renewed concentration during the campaign on the issue of independence from Canada.

The Leger poll, taken after last Thursday’s televised leaders’ debate, extended a trend that began after powerful Quebec businessman Pierre Karl Peladeau said he would run for election for the Parti Quebecois, and stated baldly that he was joining the race because he wanted the Canadian province to become a country.

Mar 24, 2014

Quebec police finish Lac-Megantic rail disaster probe

OTTAWA, March 24 (Reuters) – Quebec police have concluded
their investigation into last July’s oil-by-rail disaster in the
Quebec town of Lac-Megantic in which 47 people were killed, and
have turned the file over to the public prosecutor’s office, a
police spokesman said Monday.

“The investigators of the Surete du Quebec (police) have
sent the investigation report to the director of criminal and
penal prosecutions,” spokesman Claude Denis said.

Mar 19, 2014

New resources minister takes over as Canada’s pipeline warrior

OTTAWA, March 19 (Reuters) – When Greg Rickford, Canada’s
new natural resources minister, became the first Conservative
ever to be elected to Parliament from northern Ontario’s Kenora
district, reports said he began his victory speech: “Mission
impossible – accomplished.”

Rickford now faces another daunting challenge: winning
support for the controversial Keystone XL and Northern Gateway
oil pipelines that have galvanized the environmental movement in
opposition.

Mar 19, 2014

Canada’s Joe Oliver brings Bay Street know-how to finance minister’s job

OTTAWA/TORONTO, March 19 (Reuters) – Joe Oliver brings a
sense of gravitas to his new job as Canada’s finance minister,
an asset the governing Conservatives will want to emphasize as
they prepare to fight an election against young but popular
Liberal leader Justin Trudeau.

Oliver is 73 and spent decades working on Toronto’s Bay
Street, the heart of Canada’s financial industry, before
becoming natural resources minister after his election to
Parliament in 2011. He was named finance minister on Wednesday,
replacing Jim Flaherty, who resigned the day before.

Mar 18, 2014

Canada’s veteran finance minister quits, budget surplus in sight

OTTAWA, March 18 (Reuters) – Canada’s Jim Flaherty, the
long-serving Conservative finance minister who helped steer the
economy through the global financial crisis, resigned from
politics on Tuesday, leaving the country on track to balance its
books by 2015.

Flaherty, 64, ends the third-longest stint as finance
minister in the country’s history. He has been suffering acutely
from a rare skin disease, though he denied his resignation had
anything to do with health.

Mar 10, 2014

Quebec election race tight as media mogul joins race -poll

OTTAWA, March 10 (Reuters) – The separatist Parti Quebecois
is no longer in the lead in Quebec’s provincial election
campaign, though it would likely win the most seats in the April
7 vote if current support holds, according to a recent poll.

An Internet survey by the polling firm CROP released on
Sunday night puts support for the ruling Parti Quebecois (PQ),
which wants Quebec to separate from Canada, at 36 percent. This
is the same level as the pro-Canada Liberal Party of Quebec,
with the smaller Coalition Avenir Quebec (CAQ) at 17 percent.

Mar 7, 2014

Canadian guilty of sexual assault after piercing condoms

OTTAWA (Reuters) – The Supreme Court of Canada on Friday upheld the sexual assault conviction of a Nova Scotia man for poking holes in his condoms before having consensual sex with his girlfriend in order to try to make her pregnant.

Craig Jaret Hutchinson’s girlfriend, whose name the court has protected, said she had agreed to sex as long as it was with a condom so that she would not get pregnant.