Althia Raj
Althia Raj is The Huffington Post Canada's Ottawa Bureau Chief. Before joining HuffPost in 2011, Althia worked as a national political reporter for Postmedia News. She has covered Parliament Hill on and off since 2006, writing for Sun Media and producing for CTV and for CBC Radio's The House. She is a weekly 'power panel' contributor to CBC's Power & Politics with Evan Solomon. She can also be frequently heard and seen on CTV's Question Period, CPAC's The Week with Mark Sutcliffe, CBC The National's At Issue panel and CBC radio stations across the country. She can be found on Twitter under @althiaraj and on Facebook.
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Entries by Althia Raj

Federal Election 2015: Trudeau Releases New Ad As Anticipated Election Call Nears

(0) Comments | Posted August 1, 2015 | 5:31 PM

TORONTO — Justin Trudeau is fighting back against Tory suggestions that he is not ready to become prime minister.

In a new television commercial to be aired next week, Trudeau is seen speaking directly to the camera addressing questions that the Conservative Party has planted in people’s minds after...

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Federal Election 2015: With NDP In Lead, Why Are The Tories Still Targeting Trudeau?

(205) Comments | Posted July 30, 2015 | 6:16 PM

OTTAWA — For more than two months now, the NDP has been topping public opinion surveys. So why are the Conservatives spending their money attacking third-place Liberal leader Justin Trudeau?

The answer lies in the numbers.

Despite the NDP’s current glow in public opinion...

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Health Canada OKs Use Of RU-486 Abortion Pill

(52) Comments | Posted July 29, 2015 | 8:17 PM

OTTAWA — Health Canada has approved the use of the abortion pill RU-486, The Huffington Post Canada has learned.

RU-486, also known as mifepristone, will be allowed for use in Canada but can be obtained only through a physician, a senior government source said. The brand name under which it...

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Gary Adams, Green Candidate, In Limbo After Co-Operation Pact With Liberals Appears Nixed

(35) Comments | Posted July 29, 2015 | 3:35 PM

OTTAWA — The Green Party’s federal council has asked a candidate in Kelowna–Lake Country not to step aside or to endorse the Liberal candidate, despite his public campaign to do so.

Speaking to the CBC, Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said the Greens’ federal council had asked...

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Federal Election 2015: Writ May Drop As Early As Sunday, Sources Say

(69) Comments | Posted July 29, 2015 | 8:50 AM

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Stephen Harper may request a federal election call as early as Sunday, Aug. 2.

Sources tell The Huffington Post Canada that the Conservative Party is planning a rally in Montreal Sunday evening — a natural stopover for Harper after taking a stroll to the Governor General’s...

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NDP Satellite Offices Front And Centre Of New Tory Attack

(141) Comments | Posted July 28, 2015 | 11:41 AM

OTTAWA — The Conservative party has launched a new website aimed at naming and shaming some of the 68 current and former NDP MPs who, in total, owe taxpayers $2.7 million for inappropriate party expenses.

The site,, is the latest push by the Tories to embarrass and...

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Phone Calls Heat Up Hot Liberal Nomination Race In Eglinton--Lawrence

(79) Comments | Posted July 25, 2015 | 8:46 PM

SUTTON, QUE. — Eve Adams is fighting back against accusations she’s a turncoat Liberal in a new call to Grit members in her hotly contested riding on Saturday.

Adams, the MP for Mississauga—Brampton South, will discover Sunday evening if she is the Liberal candidate who will battle Finance Minister Joe...

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NDP, Liberals Want Joe Oliver To Appear Before House Finance Committee

(48) Comments | Posted July 24, 2015 | 1:23 PM

OTTAWA — The opposition parties want to call Finance Minister Joe Oliver before a parliamentary committee for an emergency meeting to discuss the weakening of the Canadian economy and the government’s plans to return to a balanced budget.

In July 23 letter to Conservative MP James Rajotte, chair of the...

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NDP, Liberals Must Focus On Reducing Poverty: Citizens For Public Justice

(8) Comments | Posted July 21, 2015 | 3:44 PM

OTTAWA — A faith-based group concerned with poverty is urging the NDP and Liberal parties to look to one another for inspiration and focus more of their efforts on programs that help low-income Canadians.

Karri Munn-Venn, a policy analyst with Citizens for Public Justice, told The Huffington Post Canada Monday...

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Senate Committee Studying CBC Nearly Crossed Line: Ombudsman

(38) Comments | Posted July 21, 2015 | 9:55 AM

OTTAWA — A Senate committee studying the future of CBC/Radio-Canada came dangerously close to “political interference,” French-language service ombudsman Pierre Tourangeau said Monday.

In an interview with The Huffington Post Canada, Tourangeau said non-elected senators had no business calling him or his CBC counterpart, Esther Enkin, to testify. The “partisan”...

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Canadian Expats Dismayed By Court's Decision To Revoke Their Ability To Vote

(111) Comments | Posted July 20, 2015 | 10:10 PM

OTTAWA — A Canadian who is on the verge of losing his right to vote because he moved to the United States says he is “appalled, disgusted, shocked, [and] dismayed” by the “combined efforts” of the Ontario Court of Appeal and the Harper government to deny him his franchise.

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Poilievre Wears Conservative Party Shirt While Promoting Universal Child Care Benefit

(91) Comments | Posted July 20, 2015 | 3:47 PM

A key Conservative minister is again being accused of blurring the line between government and partisan business, this time because of a small but unmistakable logo on his blue shirt.

Employment Minister Pierre Poilievre attended an event in Halifax Monday organized by his department to promote the government's enhanced Universal...

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NDP Candidate Béatrice Zako Resigns Following Revelation Of Past Comments On Quebec Separatism

(100) Comments | Posted July 19, 2015 | 8:57 PM

OTTAWA — An NDP candidate who once compared Quebec to a colonized African country has resigned, the party says.

In a statement emailed to The Huffington Post Canada over the weekend, spokesman Marc-André Viau confirmed Béatrice Zako, the Montreal NDP candidate selected Thursday to go head-to-head against Liberal...

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Catherine Frazee Says Her Assisted Suicide Beliefs Won't Affect Panel Recommendations

(35) Comments | Posted July 18, 2015 | 10:45 AM

OTTAWA — A panellist chosen to consult with Canadians and recommend to the federal government how to implement doctor-assisted dying is dismissing concerns she and another member will let their personal views taint the panel’s recommendations.

Catherine Frazee, a professor emerita at Ryerson University who served as a witness for...

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Béatrice Zako, Montreal NDP Candidate, Once Compared Quebec To Colonized African Country

(43) Comments | Posted July 17, 2015 | 6:44 PM

OTTAWA — The NDP candidate running against Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau once compared Quebec to a colonized African country struggling for its independence.

UPDATE: Zako has resigned her candidacy, according to the NDP.
Béatrice Zako, originally from the Ivory Coast, made headlines Thursday after it was revealed...
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Gary Adams, Green Party Candidate, Will Quit To Campaign For Liberal Candidate

(139) Comments | Posted July 17, 2015 | 12:18 PM

OTTAWA — The Green and Liberal candidates in the B.C. riding of Kelowna–Lake Country have formed an unorthodox alliance that could see a Grit MP sitting in two party caucuses.

Gary Adams won a contested nomination Thursday evening to represent the Greens. But a notice on the riding association’s Facebook...

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Thomas Mulcair's Autobiography Strength Of Conviction: 3 Surprising Things From The Book

(32) Comments | Posted July 15, 2015 | 4:50 PM

Maclean’s magazine has published an excerpt of NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair’s autobiography Strength of Conviction, which will be published on Aug. 1. In the 1,500-word excerpt, Mulcair describes his time as a lonely twentysomething federalist working for the PQ government in 1980.

Here are three of the most surprising...

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Bill Blair Says Thomas Mulcair Approached Him To Run For NDP

(205) Comments | Posted June 23, 2015 | 4:36 PM

OTTAWA — Liberal candidate and former Toronto police chief Bill Blair says it was the NDP who first approached him to run for Parliament.

In an interview with The Huffington Post Canada, Blair, a veteran of the police service and the top cop in Toronto for the past 10 years,...

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'Ready For Change': Mulcair Makes Case For NDP Government At Rally

(16) Comments | Posted June 17, 2015 | 10:47 PM

OTTAWA — NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair tried to position himself Wednesday as the best agent for change.

“After 10 long years of Stephen Harper and the Conservatives, Canadians are ready for change,” Mulcair declared to a cheering crowd of more than 730 people assembled at an Ottawa convention hall.


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Brent Rathgeber, Independent MP, Wants You To Be Able To Fire Your MP

(83) Comments | Posted June 17, 2015 | 6:45 PM

OTTAWA – Independent MP Brent Rathgeber wants Canadians to be able to fire their member of Parliament if they are unsatisfied with the job he or she is doing.

The Edmonton MP, who quit the Conservative caucus after the government tried to water down his bill on public salary...

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