Members of Parliament will return to Ottawa on Monday and vow to act on Canadians’ pressing concerns, as the House of Commons opens its first session of 2024.
Fresh from their respective caucus retreats, where the Liberals, Conservatives, Bloc Quebecois and New Democrats met behind closed doors to map out their policy strategies and priorities, the first day back in Parliament this year is set to bring new focus on affordability. .
First up for discussion will be how Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s minority government plans to respond to the highly controversial Senate amendments made to a Conservative private member’s bill aimed at offering farmers a carbon tax exemption.
Then the autumn economic statement implementation bill, which was not passed when parliamentarians concluded their 2023 session, is back on Monday’s agenda. As of Sunday afternoon there were no new government bills in the notification document, meaning the Liberals enter this session with no plans to introduce new legislation soon.
Trudeau noted during his cabinet meeting in Montreal that promoting measures to help the middle class, bringing together stakeholders to address the problem of car theft and considering adjustments to immigration offers in light of Canada’s housing crisis, would be are among the main concerns of your team.
Speaking to his caucus in Ottawa last Thursday, amid a whirlwind of leadership talk and persistently poor poll numbers, the prime minister said the Liberals will focus on rolling up their sleeves “to fight for Canadians, to deliver on the Canadians, to build that better future that we all have. counting on.”
Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre, addressing his group in the West Block on Sunday afternoon, said his group’s goal, in trying to form a government after the next election, will be to make a clear contrast between the priorities of “sense common” of his official opposition and the “Costly Coalition”.
“Conservatives will fight throughout this session to cut the tax, build housing, fix the budget and stop crime,” Poilievre said.
After a three-day strategy session with his MPs and hearing from ordinary voters in Edmonton, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said he will return with the mindset that Canadians “need the New Democrats more than ever.” .
Singh said his group is ready to return to Parliament determined to “make Ottawa work for the people,” including by finding ways to leverage its confidence and supply agreement with the Liberals to make real tangible improvements in housing affordability. housing and access to prescription medications. medicines.
Also taking place on Monday just down Wellington Street in downtown Ottawa is the start of Commissioner Marie-Josee Hogue’s national inquiry into foreign interference in Canadian elections.
While the issue has been on the back burner in recent months amid increased focus on cost-of-living concerns, the launch of public hearings could put the government’s handling of Trudeau from accusations of campaign meddling.