Paul Martin Slams Harper's 'Immoral' First Nations Policies (VIDEO)

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Former prime minister Paul Martin blasted Stephen Harper's First Nations policies at the Liberal leadership mini-convention on Saturday. (CP)
Former prime minister Paul Martin blasted Stephen Harper's First Nations policies at the Liberal leadership mini-convention on Saturday. (CP)

Former prime minister Paul Martin blasted Stephen Harper's First Nations policies at the Liberal leadership mini-convention on Saturday.

"The Conservative policy towards Aboriginal Canada is simply abysmal," Martin said in an interview with HuffPost Canada.

The former prime minister asserted that the Tories are not adequately funding the "youngest and the fastest growing segment of our population."

"That's discrimination," Martin said, referencing the disparity between funding for schools on and off reserves.

Martin also attacked the Tories on First Nations issues during a speech paying tribute to Bob Rae and praised the outgoing Liberal interim leader for taking a new job as chief negotiator for First Nations in Ontario on issues of sustainable development.

You can see all of Martin's comments and other videos from the Liberal leadership showcase above.

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The Liberals will now have a bit more than a week to pick their leader. Pundits have already begun to dissect today's speeches, in particular Trudeau's. It also remains to be seen whether this exercise has revitalized the Liberal Party.

Thanks for reading and following along. Check back Huffpost.ca/politics for continuing coverage of the political scene.

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Address by Justin Trudeau to The Liberal Party of Canada at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre

I stand before you a son of Quebec. A grandson of British Columbia.

And a servant of Canada.

These Canadians you just met are a few of the thousands I’ve had the honour to meet, to talk with, and to learn from over the past 6 months.

Their stories are remarkable. Remarkable, because they are so common in Canada.

With hope and hard work, every day Canadians live the values that unite this country. Optimism, openness, compassion, service to community, generosity of spirit.

My friends, our party must be their party.

Read the rest of the speech.

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Voting to open momentarily! And midnight across the country. The final results will be revealed next Sunday.

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@ althiaraj : Martin Cauchon says Canada can't take Stephen Harper's govt anymore http://t.co/fOzqRCtoPU

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martha hall findlay

Photo: Chris Dale/HuffPost Canada

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He brings up that he was one of the key architects of legalizing same-sex marriage. He also brings up Chretien's decision not to go to Iraq with the U.S.

Cauchon also brings up the fact that he was the head of the Quebec wing of the Liberal party.

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"Our party only has one doctrine and that is the well being of all Canadians," Cauchon said.

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Cauchon will be the last candidate speaking today.

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trudeau and family

Photo: Chris Dale/HuffPost Canada

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"Stephen Harper hasn't won three elections because of his personality. And it's not because of his charisma. He's won because he's focused on the economy."

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"I will be your underdog tonight,: she says at the beginning of her speech. She reminds her audience that Pierre Trudeau was the underdog when he was elected 45 years ago.

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Martha Hall Findlay will follow up Justin Trudeau. The crowd is much more energized after Justin's speech. We'll see if she can capitalize on that.

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I said back in October that the Liberal Party didn't create Canada. Canada created the Liberal Party. Well, the last six months have taught me that maybe, just maybe, Canadians are willing to do that again.

We can lead the change that so many Canadians want to make happen." - Justin Trudeau

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@ yumke : A speedy exit #lpcldr https://t.co/qrsRns6tTr

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In his speech, Justin Trudeau mentioned a photo given to him by an RCMP Constable during a visit to Loyalist College.

From the story:

After accepting the gift, Trudeau moved in to give Ling a bear hug — but he got a crisp salute of his own instead.

After the pair shared a laugh and a warm embrace, Trudeau returned to the microphone.

"Almost every single stop across this country, I am overwhelmed with the people who come to me to tell me great stories about my father and great stories about my mother," he said, his cheeks still wet.

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"If we work hard and stay optimistic, we will put forward an irresistible alternative to the Conservatives 30 months from now. Irresistible not because it is Liberal, but because it will be 100%, undeniably Canadian." - Justin Trudeau

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"We will not ignore science or shy away from tough, urgent issues like carbon pricing. Nor will we succumb to easy politics by demonizing one sector of the economy or region of the country.

A Liberal Party led by me would never use western resources to buy eastern votes." - Justin Trudeau

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"Canadians don't just want a different government. They want a better government..."

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"To lead Canada we must serve Canadians. We must prove it by acts more than just words."

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"I stand before you a son of Quebec, a grandson of British Columbia, but a servant of Canada."

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This room is going to go nuts when Trudeau walks on....

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joyce murray

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@ gmbutts : Backstage with @JustinTrudeau and his most important advisors. #lpcldr #cdnpoli http://t.co/7yrvfMDVOq

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Maybe...

joyce murray band

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@ InfoAlerteBot : JOYCE MURRAY'S STEEL BAND > CHARLIE ANGUS' #ndpldr RAP (http://t.co/QustRVkb4N) #lpcldr

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A few dozen of her followers stream in from one side of the hall, a band is playing them in. A bit more lively than the last two candidates.

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@ althiaraj : The audience seems to like Karen McCrimmon a lot more than Deborah Coyne. She's making (some of) them laugh.

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