Justin Trudeau on brink as Canadian PM to trigger snap election to force through new plans

Justin Trudeau: Vaccines are not enough to keep us safe

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Mr Trudeau is set to trigger a snap election as he seeks approval for the government’s costly plans to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, four sources close to the Prime Minister have said. The sources, who requested to remain anonymous, added that Mr Trudeau will make the announcement on Sunday. The Prime Minister’s aides have reportedly claimed for months that the ruling Liberals would push for a vote before the end of 2021, two years ahead of schedule.

Mr Trudeau only has a minority government and relies on other parties to push through legislation.

The Liberals racked up record levels of debt as they spent heavily to protect the public and businesses from COVID-19.

They are now planning to inject an extra $80 billion – between 3 percent and 4 percent of GDP – into the economy over the next three years.

Mr Trudeau was elected as Prime Minister in 2015 with a majority of the 338 seats in the House of Commons.

However, in 2019 he was reduced to a minority government.

One source said: “Circumstances have changed massively since 2019. We need to know whether Canadians support our plans for economic recovery.”

Liberals realise that calling for an election at this moment in time is be a gamble with recent opinion polls suggesting the party is not yet guaranteed a majority.

The fourth wave of COVID-19 is not helping matters either.

Chief Public Health Officer Teresa Tam said on Thursday that there has been a strong resurgence in cases of COVID-19.

The number of people being treated in hospital has risen by 12 percent compared to last week, she stated in a briefing.

Ms Tam said: “After several months of declining severity trends, we are now seeing early signs of increase in severe illness.

“Fortunately, the number of deaths remains low.”

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The Conservatives, Mr Trudeau’s biggest opposition, have said that his spending is excessive and will leave future generations in mountains of debt.

However, a survey carried out by Abacus on Thursday has shown that the Liberals (37 percent) are still ahead of the Conservatives (28 percent).

The online poll of 3,000 people, conducted between August 6 and August 11, suggested that Mr Trudeau could regain control of the House of Commons.

The Liberals currently hold 155 of the 338 seats.

To formally launch the campaign, Mr Trudeau will need to visit Governor General Mary Simon, the personal representative of the head of state Queen Elizabeth II, to ask for Parliament to be dissolved.

That visit is currently planned for Sunday morning, according to the sources.

Constitutional experts have claimed that Ms Simon will agree to the request.

The news comes after Mr Trudeau and Canada were shamed as the worst nation for CO2 emissions per capita in the G7, following a grim report warning of disastrous climate change.

In the report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), scientists warned of an increasing number of extreme heatwaves, droughts and flooding, and a key temperature limit being broken in just over a decade.

According to Statista, who compiled data on the top polluting countries per capita in 2017 in terms of CO2, Qatar is the most polluting country at 37.05 tonnes.

But out of the G7 nations, who agreed to tackle climate change at a summit this year, Canada pollutes the most with 16.85 tonnes of CO2 emissions per capita.

The US follows closely behind at around 15.74 tonnes, followed by Germany at 9.7.

The UK has the second-lowest CO2 emissions per capita in the G7, at over 5 tonnes.

The Canadian Prime Minister has previously vowed to tackle climate change and has set a target to lower Canada’s emissions to 30 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.

However, a report by the C.D. Howe Institute said 70 to 75 percent of passenger automobile sales in Canada will have to be zero-emission vehicles by 2030.

The study titled ‘Driving Ambitions: The Implications of Decarbonizing the Transportation Sector by 2030’ has noted: “This paper does not make any inference towards the new target as no material such as emissions modelling or reports have been published by the federal government as yet.

“The federal government could facilitate understanding by the Canadian public and members of industry by publishing the more detailed projections (i.e., by sub-sector and province) that we assume underlie its sector-level projections.”

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