OTTAWA (NEWS 1130) – Justin Trudeau’s minority government could be put to the test sooner, rather than later. Finance Minister Bill Morneau has announced the government will push forward with the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.
The announcement comes just hours after the party was re-elected.
The Trudeau government bought the pipeline for $4.5 billion in Aug. 2018.
Given the Liberal minority and the need for another party’s backing to push anything though, the Liberals’ plan to get moving with the expansion could get tricky with the NDP opposing the project.
“However, the Conservatives — although they might oppose the government on most other things — might say yes to the pipeline,” John Stall, a longtime political reporter who now works for 680 NEWS, told the Big Story podcast after Monday night’s election. “That would be a contentious issue.”
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said on Tuesday that Canadians have chosen a minority government, but that isn’t going to stop him from fighting for what he believes in.
“I believe that we’ve got to fight Trans Mountain, so I’ll continue to fight it. I’ll raise my position and I’ll raise the concerns, I’ll raise the concerns of Canadians every time I get a chance to,” he said in Burnaby. “I also want to make sure that it’s clear that we need real action on fighting the climate crisis, and young people depend on us, and are demanding that we take action, and I’m going to fight for that.
“But Canadians have chosen the make up of the Parliament, and that is the make up of the Parliament that we have right now. And within that Parliament, I’m going to do my job to fight for the things that Canadians want,” Singh added.
On the issue of whether he would be willing to use potential support of the Trans Mountain pipeline as a bargaining chip, Singh says he will not negotiate through the media. Has not spoken with Prime Minister Trudeau this morning. #cdnpoli #CanadaVotes2019
— Martin MacMahon (@martinmacmahon) October 22, 2019
The pipeline expansion project has seen its fair share of drama from protests to rallies, to multiple reviews. However, experts have said they still see a future for the project.
Political science researcher and data scientist John Santos said on Monday that the NDP could try its hand at tying the project up further, delaying it with orders in council, but that the Liberals will likely have the upper hand in that battle.
Before the federal election, some polls found support had grown for the pipeline since the Liberals decided to buy it.