NEWS
09/25/2015 17:48 EDT | Updated 09/25/2016 01:12 EDT

A look at key developments Friday on the federal campaign trail

OTTAWA — A look at key developments Friday on the campaign trail.

The main party leaders moved on from the first French-language debate, with the Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau laying out an immigration platform. The NDP's Tom Mulcair and Bloc Quebec Leader Gilles Duceppe talked about niqabs, while Conservative Leader Stephen Harper promised "tax-lock" legislation if he's re-elected.

___

Trudeau promised a Liberal government would scrap visa requirements imposed by the Conservative government in 2009 on Mexican citizens. In Brampton, Ont., Trudeau accused Harper of souring Canada's relationship with Mexico. He also promised to scrap parts of Bill C-24 that give the government the right to strip citizenship from dual nationals — or those with a claim to dual nationality — if they commit serious crimes. Trudeau also pledged to shift Canada's immigration focus to family reunification.

___

Mulcair on Friday was sticking to his guns that women should have a right to wear a veil at citizenship ceremonies. He brushed off suggestions that he's offside with public opinion both in Quebec and beyond. He said women have the right to wear what they want and that's something he believes in. Mulcair again accused Harper of trying to deflect attention from his economic and fiscal record by raising the niqab issue. The NDP leader also pledged help for the forestry sector, including $55 million for manufacturing facilities and $40-million for research and development.

___

Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe said he believes his party is gathering momentum in the aftermath of Thursday's French-language debate. At a campaign stop in Trois-Rivieres, Que., he defended his party's position on banning the niqab for those giving or receiving public services. He said 90 per cent of Quebecers agree with his position. At the Federation of Quebec Municipalities, Duceppe promised help for the province's forestry sector.

___

Harper attempted to burnish his tax-fighting credentials by pledging legislation prohibiting increases to federal tax rates. He said he would pass "tax lock" legislation prohibiting increases to federal personal and business income taxes, sales taxes and "discretionary payroll taxes" such as CPP and EI. The measure would be largely symbolic as the Conservatives have already pledged not to increase taxes and a future government could repeal the legislation.  

___

The Greens said their leader, Elizabeth May, had brought "substance" to Thursday's French language debate. May did media interviews before flying back to British Columbia from Quebec.

The Canadian Press