Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

In Canada, Trudeau's son talks of Quebec independence

Canadians are bristling after the son of late Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau suggested he might someday support separatism for Quebec.

Justin Trudeau, 40-year-old Liberal Member of Parliament from Montreal, was commenting on the "values" of Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper in an interview.

"I always say that if I ever believed Canada was really the Canada of Stephen Harper . . . maybe I'd think of wanting to make Quebec a country," he said.

In explaining his remarks later, Trudeau said it is "ridiculous" to question his devotion to a united Canada.

It was merely the "tone and the values" of the Conservative government that pushed him to say what he did, he said.

Independence-seeking Bloc Québécois politicians were pleased by Trudeau's "realization" that Quebec's values are not shared by the federal government or the rest of Canada.

Other federalist party members recalled that his father had been an archenemy of Quebec separatists.

Government puts end to long-gun registry

The Canadian government has finally killed off the controversial long-gun registry.

Prime Minister Harper's government used its majority to pass the bill 159-130 with the support of maverick New Democrats John Rafferty and Bruce Hyer.

The Conservatives have opposed the registry created by the former Liberal government after the massacre of 14 women at Montreal's École Polytechnique university in 1989.

Public Safety Minister Vic Toews said it was a "billion-dollar boondoggle" that is ineffective and penalizes law-abiding hunters and farmers.

News in brief

• Cuts in health care spending, freezing doctors' payments and ending full-day kindergarten are among 362 recommendations to eliminate Ontario's escalating budget deficit. In a report, former TD Bank economist Don Drummond also said class sizes should be increased and teachers should work longer than the average 59 years of age before retirement, warning the deficit could reach $30 billion within five years. Also suggested are higher electricity and water charges and closing one of the two Niagara Falls casinos.

• A British Columbia man was sentenced to 17 months in jail for taking part in Vancouver's Stanley Cup street riot in June. Ryan Dickinson, 20, of Coquitlam was part of a mob that caused $1.2 million in damage. There are 46 others awaiting trial from among 125 rioters police have identified so far.

• An agreement reached during Prime Minister Harper's recent trip to China was a 10-year loan of pandas Er Shun and Ji Li. The giant pandas will move into the Toronto and Calgary zoos next year. There is a hope that the male-female pair might mate while living in Canada.

Facts and figures

A jump in gasoline and food prices pushed Canada's annual inflation rate up to 2.5 percent last month from 2.3 percent.

Canada's dollar is worth $1.0032 in U.S. funds while the U.S. greenback returns 99.67 cents Canadian before bank exchange fees.

The key interest rate of the Bank of Canada is 1 percent while the prime lending rate is 3 percent.

Stock markets are higher, with the Toronto exchange index at 12,445 points and the TSX Venture Exchange index 1,649 points.

Lotto 6-49: (Wednesday) 3, 19, 21, 41, 43 and 47; bonus 9. (Feb. 11) 6, 13, 19, 32, 43 and 44; bonus 9. Lotto Max: (Feb. 10) 1, 5, 25, 35, 38, 44 and 47; bonus 39.

Regional briefs

• Several people were arrested in Montreal when hundreds protested against proposed university tuition fee increases. Strikes are also planned by students as Quebec's Liberal government moves to raise fees by $325 annually over five years. The fees are the lowest in Canada at $2,168 a year for full-time students.

• Someone in Alberta is holding an uncashed lottery ticket worth $1 million tax free. There is just one week left before the expiration date for the holder to cash the Lotto Max ticket bought in Calgary for the draw on Feb. 25 of last year. The winning numbers were 2, 12, 31, 34, 45, 48 and 49. In 2006, a $14.9 million ticket sold in Alberta also went unclaimed.

• Daredevil Nik Wallenda has been given permission to cross Niagara Falls on a tightrope next summer. The Niagara Parks Commission reluctantly approved the stunt request from the descendant of the famous circus performers, the Flying Wallendas. He wants to "fulfill a dream" of walking along a cable stretched across the Niagara River between the United States and Canada.

Jim Fox can be reached at [email protected]

In Canada, Trudeau's son talks of Quebec independence 02/18/12 [Last modified: Saturday, February 18, 2012 7:27pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Pasco considers new tax districts for parks, libraries, public safety

    Local Government

    DADE CITY — Faced with growing costs amid an expected voter-endorsed tax cut, Pasco County is considering changing the way it pays for parks, libraries and public safety.

    
Pasco County is considering a new taxing district to finance an expansion and ongoing operations of the county's Department of Parks,Recreaton and Natural Resources. Shown is the Dick's Tournament of Champions at the the  Wesley Chapel District Park, the last district park developed by the county. It opened in 2007.
  2. Romano: Why flood insurance might not be enough to save your home

    Local Government

    Irma is gone, and Maria never came.

    And yet this is as good a time as any to worry.

  3. Tampa's streetcar system looks to expand north through downtown

    Transportation

    TAMPA — The TECO Line Streetcar system that runs from Ybor City to the Channel District could be extended north through downtown all the way to Tampa Heights, according to the latest update of a $1.7 million study aimed at expanding the streetcar system.

    Riders take in the last few stops of the streetcar route in Ybor City during the tenth anniversary celebration of the TECO line streetcar system in Tampa in 2012. Now officials are looking for ways to expand the service north through downtown to Tampa Heights. [EVE EDELHEIT  |  Times]
  4. Interview: Steve Martin, Martin Short bringing 'best version' of their show back to St. Petersburg

    Stage

    Hot celebrity-spotting tip: Stop by the Salvador Dalí Museum on Jan. 19. You might catch a glimpse of Steve Martin.

    Steve Martin, left, and Martin Short will bring “An Evening You Will Forget for the Rest of Your Life” to the Mahaffey Theater on Jan. 19.
  5. Report: Well-being of black and Hispanic children continues to lag in Florida

    K12

    Despite making progress in health care access and parental employment, Florida has not improved its poverty rate for children over the past five years, a newly released national report shows.

    Students line up in the courtyard at predominantly black Lakewood Elementary in St. Petersburg. A new report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation finds that Florida ranks 28th in the nation on an index that measures the well-being of black children. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times]