(OTTAWA) The Trudeau government hopes to “move quickly next week” toward an all-party agreement on a possible investigation into foreign interference.
A meeting held Friday evening between the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Dominic LeBlanc, and the parliamentary leaders of the opposition parties was “very productive”, according to his spokesperson.
Three sources had confirmed the holding of this meeting to The Canadian Press. They were granted anonymity so that they could express themselves more freely on the issue.
Before the meeting, one of them, from the New Democratic Party, believed that an agreement between parties on the modalities of an investigation was within reach. “We are not far. […] It’s coming,” she summed up.
The other sources had not advanced as much on the imminence of an agreement. A source on the Liberal side simply presented the meeting as a follow-up to discussions initiated in June by Minister LeBlanc.
The latter, the day after the resignation of special rapporteur David Johnston, reached out to other political parties to find common ground on what to do next.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had asked the former governor general to decide in favor or not of a commission of inquiry. The latter dismissed the idea in a preliminary report before resigning in June.
Opposition parties accused Johnston of bias, in appearance or in fact, as well as closeness to the prime minister and his family.
Friday’s meeting with the House leaders of the other parties took place virtually while Mr. LeBlanc was in Japan for meetings with his G7 counterparts.
All opposition parties have been calling for a public, independent inquiry into foreign interference since March. Several motions were adopted by a majority of elected members in the House to express this desire.