Seven stories in the news for Wednesday, May 17
ALBERTA PASSES BILL THAT COULD CUT OIL TO B.C.
Alberta has passed legislation that could see punitive price spikes in British Columbia in the dispute over the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion. Premier Rachel Notley won't say when and how the power will be used, but said she won't wait long. The bill would give Alberta the power to decide how much fuel is sent and by what means, be it by rail or pipeline. B.C. Premier John Horgan calls the law provocative and his attorney general says a law designed to inflict harm on another province violates the constitution.
TRUDEAU CONTINUES U.S. TRIP
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will attend a business luncheon in Manhattan today, just as word spreads that efforts to conclude NAFTA talks before the end of this week are likely to fail. Trudeau will spend the second morning of his three-day U.S. tour participating in what is billed as an "armchair discussion" on economics and international trade at the Economic Club of New York.
TORIES, JEWISH GROUPS CONDEMN PM'S GAZA REMARKS
Canadian Jewish groups and the Conservatives have criticized Prime Minister Trudeau's comments on the deadly violence in Gaza this week. Trudeau said he was "appalled" by the shooting of a Canadian doctor and described the reported use of excessive force and live ammunition as "inexcusable." The Toronto-based Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center and Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer all criticized Trudeau for failing to call out the militant group Hamas for its role in the violence.
JASON KENNEY DEFENDS CALLING TRUDEAU CLUELESS
Alberta United Conservative Leader Jason Kenney is standing by his personal attack on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whom he called empty and clueless. Kenney says, from his experience, Trudeau struggles with nuanced political issues, particularly the Trans Mountain pipeline file. Kenney says it isn't a personal issue with Trudeau, but rather, it's about standing up for Alberta.
VERDICT EXPECTED IN LETTER-BOMB CASE
A Winnipeg man is expected to find out today if he will be found guilty of sending letter bombs to his former wife and two lawyers. A judge is to hand down a verdict against Guido Amsel on charges that include attempted murder and aggravated assault. Amsel was arrested after three explosive packages were found in July 2015.
B.C. TO MATCH FLOOD DONATIONS
As evacuations mount and river levels rise in British Columbia, Premier John Horgan says his government will match Canadian Red Cross donations for those most harmed by the flooding. Flanked by rival politicians as a show of unity, Horgan said the province will match donations made to the Red Cross of up to $20 million. Evacuation alerts were extended Wednesday to more areas of B.C.'s Fraser Valley as the Fraser River nears flood stage along with several other waterways.
VENEZUELA: CANADA BANS EXPATS FROM VOTING
Venezuela says Canada is blocking its citizens living here from voting in the South American nation's weekend presidential election. Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza on Wednesday called Canada's decision hostile and urged Ottawa government to reconsider. President Nicolas Maduro is seeking a second term in Sunday's election, which Canada, the U.S. and others reject as illegitimate. An estimated 5,000 Venezuelans live in Canada.
ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:
— A decision is expected today in the case of Seyed Mirsaeid-Ghazi, a Halifax taxi driver accused of groping a female passenger.
— Statistics Canada will release Canada's international transaction in securities for March.
— The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is holding its annual Gas Tax Honesty Day.
— The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board will release 2018 results.
— Finance Minister Bill Morneau will speak at the Toronto Region Board of Trade.
— The Humboldt Broncos will discuss the next steps in allocating funds in the Humboldt Broncos Memorial Fund.
— Transport Minister Marc Garneau will make a funding announcement for the Port of Vancouver.
— The Fraser Institute releases a study on aging populations and entrepreneurship across the developed world.
The Canadian Press