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Federal government tries to fast-track bill that would avoid fall election

Last Updated Sep 28, 2020 at 9:40 am PDT

FILE - Leader of the Government in the House of Commons Pablo Rodriguez speaks at a press conference on COVID-19, at West Block on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang)
Summary

Government House leader Pablo Rodriguez put forward a motion that would limit debate on Bill C-2

The revised plan is expected to keep financial payments for out-of-work Canadians the same as under the CERB

If the NDP supports the plan and the throne speech in a confidence vote, the government will survive

OTTAWA — The federal government is trying to fast-track a bill to change COVID-19 aid as a second wave hits.

However, the wait will last a little longer to see the details of the deal reached late Friday with the NDP to avoid a fall election.

Government House leader Pablo Rodriguez put forward a motion that would limit debate on Bill C-2 and quickly push it through the House of Commons.

“It’s time for action. It’s a time of urgency. It’s not a time for members to slow-walk their way towards an action,” he said.

The revised plan is expected to keep financial payments for out-of-work Canadians the same as under the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit, which ended this weekend, and will expand the plan for paid sick leave during the pandemic.

The revised bill could have been tabled Monday morning, but that is now expected to happen after question period.

If the NDP supports the plan and the throne speech in a confidence vote, the government will survive and there will be no federal election.

Meanwhile, two opposition leaders also returned to the House of Commons in Ottawa on Monday after recovering from COVID-19.

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Both Conservative leader Erin O’Toole and Bloc Quebecois leader Yves-Francious Blanchet are out of quarantine and expected to speak in the House of Commons to give their response to last week’s federal throne speech.

Blanchet outlined his party’s own plan for economic recovery before heading to the House in the morning. It includes a 35-per-cent increase to provincial health transfers, an inquiry into the government’s pandemic response, and a demand for a full budget this fall.