Trudeau Looks to Prorogue Parliament Amid WE Controversy, Cabinet Shuffle

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is looking to prorogue Parliament next month in order to come back with a new speech from the throne and an economic update in October.

Trudeau must seek permission from Gov. Gen. Julie Payette to prorogue, but has not announced when he will do so.

A prorogation would end the current Parliamentary session amid the current WE Charity ethics controversy, halting all legislative business that has not passed—including all ongoing WE Charity committee probes and the remaining pre-pandemic pieces of legislation.

Trudeau is planning a cabinet retreat in mid-September with the intention of proroguing Parliament and presenting a pandemic recovery plan in early October.

The news comes less than 24 hours after Bill Morneau announced Monday that he was resigning as finance minister and an MP.

Morneau and Trudeau are both facing investigations by the federal ethics watchdog for taking part in talks to hand WE Charity a contract to run a pandemic-related student-volunteer program. Trudeau and Morneau have both apologized for not recusing themselves from discussions on the contract despite the charity’s ties to their families.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland will take over the role of finance minister and will be sworn in later today.

Trudeau vowed when he was first elected to not use prorogation “to avoid difficult political circumstances,” as the Liberals accused former prime minister Stephen Harper of doing amid the Senate expense scandal.

With files from The Canadian Press

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