OTTAWA – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he intends to name his new cabinet in October, bring parliament back “before the end of the fall” and implement the promised federal vaccine mandate as soon as possible.
In his first major press conference since the September 20 federal election, which saw Canadians give another minority a hand to the Liberals, Trudeau said on Tuesday that he had set up the next government with Governor General Mary May Simon earlier that day. talked about his intention to make.
“We just went through an election where Canadians have made it very clear what kind of things they want to work on, and I’m looking forward to being involved,” Trudeau said. “Exact dates are yet to be worked out, but we are in the business of meeting an ambitious agenda that Canadians have set.”
The prime minister said it has been a busy first week since the election, citing the recent releases of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, as well as calls with provincial premiers and US President Joe Biden.
After entering the 44th parliament, the Liberals would have 159 seats, four more than they campaigned for. The Conservative seat count has not changed, with 119 MPs elected, the Bloc Québécois and the NDP both holding one seat with 33 and 25 MPs respectively, while the Green Party continues to occupy two of the 338 seats in the House of Commons. Will keep
“This election matters,” Trudeau said, dismissing suggestions that not much has changed as a result of the 36-day and estimated $610 million summer election.
“I’m really excited about everything that we, as a parliament, and as a government are going to do in the coming years and I think Canadians see that this election was really important. “
The first batch of 52 newly-elected lawmakers have begun their orientation session on Parliament Hill and virtually. Most of those returning in the fall are sitting MPs.
While he has other important cabinet decisions, Trudeau has already asked Chrystia Freeland to continue as deputy prime minister and finance minister, which he has accepted.
The prime minister said he would hold talks with the rest of his desired ministerial roster in the coming weeks as he works to achieve gender balance in his post-election front-bench.
“Plenty of work ahead … with Christia, and more to come, an extraordinary team of Liberal ministers and MPs,” he said, with Freeland standing next to him.
While his current ministers continue until their titles are reassigned, Trudeau has places to be filled by ministers who lost or did not run again. He may want to recalculate the regional distribution to take new seats in the Prairies.
“As I always do to make sure there’s a fair regional distribution, I want a range of skills and variety around the table,” Trudeau said. During the campaign he was noncommittal about whether he had any specific goals for representation of black, indigenous and people of color in his cabinet.
Other important decisions he will have to make in the coming weeks include appointing a strong roster of key positions in the House of Commons given minority dynamics, such as the chief government whip – or “counter” that ensures their Always have enough MPs. seats in the House, especially during major votes—and parliamentary secretaries.
Parliamentary secretaries are the MPs of the governing caucus, acting as liaison between cabinet ministers and the House of Commons.
Unlike the cabinet, these roles cease when federal elections are called, so there is no current parliamentary secretary. This second tier is likely to be renamed in the days after the cabinet’s unveiling.
Plan to go ‘tough’ on priorities
The prime minister said he decided to visit a vaccine clinic before asking questions on Tuesday because getting through the COVID-19 crisis is his top priority. While there, he talked to people who were raising their arms for their first, second, and third doses. Some of them cited proof of vaccination requirements only to get their initial shot when Trudeau asked what prompted them to get vaccinated.
Notably, Trudeau reinstated his promised intention. Enforce a Federal Vaccine Mandate That includes making COVID-19 vaccination a requirement for federal employees, and ensuring that anyone age 12 or older who wants to board a domestic plane or train is fully vaccinated .
The prime minister also said his government would go ahead with an international vaccine passport for fully immunized Canadians who wish to travel abroad, paying the bill for provinces that already have their own vaccine certificates. have gone ahead with the system, and will impose criminal sanctions on those who harass healthcare workers.
Pandemic aside, the other major focus for the federal government will be implementing a suite of $10-day child care deals, which is 10 days of paid sick leave for people in federally-regulated areas whose employees already It does not offer it, and continues to promise, working on climate change, indigenous reconciliation, housing affordability and economic development.
On all of these issues, Trudeau believes he now has a strong mandate from Canadians to “go even faster, and harder, and deeper.”
“Canadians were very clear that they want those progressive big, bold ideas delivered by their parliament and their government, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do,” Trudeau said.
As was the case in 2019, Trudeau will have to look to opposition parties for support in order to pass the law and preserve the confidence of the House of Commons. The most likely dance partners would once again be the NDP and the Bloc.
While the Greens are already looking for their next leader, the Conservative Party and its members are in the midst of talks about whether their leader, Erin O’Toole, should remain in her job while the Canadians open her party. Has more votes than cast votes. Liberal.
In an email to supporters on Tuesday, O’Toole said it was because of the Conservative Party that the Liberals were prevented from forming a majority government, and reinstated his commitment to being leader in the next election, which he warned. Was given that it could be a few months away.
“A week ago, Canadians went to the polls to pass judgment on Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government. Mr. Trudeau expected the Canadian people to give him a majority. Canadians said no to a Liberal majority – but he also Said we still have some work to do to earn their trust,” he wrote.