Election update: What you need to know for October 17

Obama backs Trudeau, and Liberals prepared to support Toronto's subway proposal
By H.G. Watson - Published on Oct 17, 2019
Justin Trudeau and Barack Obama
Then-U.S. president Barack Obama and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau walk down the Hall of Honour on Parliament Hill in June 2016. (Paul Chiasson/CP)

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Here’s our daily look at what’s happening on the federal campaign trail.

Latest news

  • Former United States president Barack Obama is supporting Team Trudeau. In a tweet sent yesterday afternoon, Obama vouched for the Liberal party leader. “I was proud to work with Justin Trudeau as President,” Obama wrote. “He's a hard-working, effective leader who takes on big issues like climate change. The world needs his progressive leadership now, and I hope our neighbors to the north support him for another term.” An Elections Canada spokesperson told the BBC that “foreign citizens were welcome to express their opinion on Canada's elections.” It’s not the first time Obama has supported an international leader — he endorsed French president Emmanuel Macron in 2017.
  • If the Liberals win the election next week, some of Toronto’s transit dreams may come true. The Toronto Star reports that Trudeau’s party is prepared to provide billions in financial support to build the Ontario Line, which would run over 15 kilometres, from the Ontario Science Centre to Liberty Village. An official announcement will come with the release of a city hall staff report that is expected to endorse the new subway line.
  • Conservative leader Andrew Scheer has promised to legislate financial penalties against politicians who violate the Conflict of Interest Act. The CBC reports that Scheer announced a number of measures to increase transparency in government, including “implementing legislative reforms to protect whistle blowers from retaliation, passing legislation to prevent ministers from holding shares in companies that could be affected by changes to government legislation, strengthening lobbying restrictions.” Meanwhile, ethics watchdog Democracy Watch is calling on Elections Canada to investigate whether the Conservatives and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers violated the Canada Elections Act.
  • A former chief electoral officer says that the next government must close a loophole that allows organizations to fundraise and pass the money on to third parties. “If significant contributions can be made and the donors are not known, then Canadians are lacking that piece of knowledge, which the legislation was supposed to provide to them," Jean-Pierre Kingsley told the Globe and Mail. His comments were in response to a Globe story that found that the Manning Centre would not disclose where it had gotten more than $300,000 in donations that went to organizations running attack ads against the Liberals.

What to watch for

  • NDP leader Jagmeet Singh will be touring Ontario today. He’ll visit Welland, Toronto, and Brampton.
  • Scheer will also spend some time in Ontario today before heading to the Maritimes. He’ll make a campaign announcement in Brampton, canvass in Toronto, and then hold a campaign event in Little Harbour, Nova Scotia.
  • Trudeau will tour Quebec, where he will make stops in Trois-Rivières, Terrebonne, Sainte-Thérèse, and Montreal.
  • Green party leader Elizabeth May will begin a three-day tour of Vancouver Island and Vancouver. She’ll make a fisheries announcement near Qualicum Beach and campaign in Nanaimo.

Correction: An earlier version of this story stated that the Ontario Line would run from Ontario Place to Liberty Village. In fact, it would run from the Ontario Science Centre to Liberty Village. TVO.org regrets the error.

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