In The News This Week – June 19, 2016

We summarize the top stories in Canadian politics to help you stay up to date! Check out what was making headlines this past week:

1. Bill C-14, the Assisted Dying bill has officially been passed by both the Senate and the House of Commons, and now stands as the law of the land! After initial Senate review, the bill was sent back to the House of Commons with revisions on Wednesday. On Thursday, the House voted on whether to keep the amendments made by the Senate. In the end, the House adopted 5 of the 7 changes made by the Senate – most notably voting against a change to the ‘reasonably foreseeable’ death requirement. The Senate in turn upheld the will of the House on Friday, passing the bill in a vote of 44 to 28. – CBCGlobe and Mail

  • On a related note… Leading up to the second review and vote in the Senate on C-14, there was lots of discussion on whether the Senate would ‘bend to the will’ of the elected officials of the House. In other words, whether they would pass a Bill that did not include all their suggested changes. This uncertainty was compounded by PM Trudeau’s commitment and recent changes to make the Senate less partisan – would “independent Liberal” Senators respect the will of the leading Party less than “Liberal” Senators? The vote on C-14 showed that many of the Independent Liberal Senators appointed did decide to vote for the Bill even though they had originally wanted to see fundamental changes. – Globe and Mail

2. Bill C-210 – the bill put forth by Liberal MP Mauril Belanger to change the lyrics of O Canada to be gender neutral – was also passed this Friday by the House in a vote of 225 to 74. The Bill must now be passed by the Senate before the change takes place, but it is uncertain whether this will occur before the Senate breaks for the summer. Timeliness is important in the passing of this Bill as Belanger has Lou Gehrig’s disease and his condition is rapidly deteriorating. The passing of the Bill by the Senate would see lyrics change from “in all thy sons command” to “in all of us command”. – CBC

3. It has been one week since the horrific shooting of 49 people in an Orlando nightclub. Prime Minister Trudeau responded to express his grief and support for the LGBTQ community and those who lost loved ones – you can read his official statement here. The shooting by an American citizen with ISIS sympathies has added fuel to the already heated election race between Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump. The latter has responded with further calls to ban Muslims from immigrating to the US, while the former responded with sorrow and calls for gun control. – Globe and MailCNN

4. The Liberals acknowledged this week that the Islamic State is committing genocide against Yazidis after a UN human rights panel concluded as much. The Conservative party had previously tabled a motion to have the Liberals acknowledge this, which the Liberals voted against. Now that the Liberals have changed their tune, they are calling on the UN Security Council for urgent action. – Globe and MailUN


Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Health Minister Jane Philpott speaking on the Assisted Dying Bill. Photo by: Adrian Wyld of the Canadian Press

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