Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

Monday Memo: Chávez Names Maduro – Regional Elections in Venezuela – Puerto Rico Discusses Next Steps for Statehood – Arab-Latin American Forum – and more

Top stories this week are likely to include: Chávez designates successor as he heads to Havana; Puerto Rico convenes legislature for statehood; Arab-Latin American Forum in Abu Dhabi; and impact of recent energy takeover deals in Canada. Developments in Venezuela: This is the final week of campaigning in Venezuela’s regional elections, and the electorate will … Read more


What the U.S. Election Tells Canada

The recent reelection of Barack Obama as President, the increase of Democrats in the Senate, and their slight gains in the House of Representatives has led analysts to talk about a changing America.  While Obama is a highly popular political figure in Canada, it was somewhat surprising for many of us glued to our television … Read more


Monday Memo: Colombia, FARC in Cuba – Honduran Presidential Candidates – Canada Negotiates FTA with European Union – and more

Top stories this week are likely to include: Colombia-FARC peace negotiations move to Havana; 2013 presidential contest set in Honduras; Canadian trade minister in Brussels for free trade talks; and The Hague rules on the Nicaragua-Colombia maritime border dispute. Colombia-FARC Talks Resume: Representatives from the Colombian government arrived yesterday in Havana, Cuba, ahead of the … Read more


Harper’s Choice

Last week, Prime Minister Stephen Harper interrupted his trip to India to offer President Barack Obama his congratulations on his reelection. In Canada, there had been talk that Conservative Prime Minister Harper may have preferred a more ideologically-similar partner like Mitt Romney to govern our closest political neighbor and ally and strongest commercial partner. But … Read more


Tom Mulcair’s Rendezvous With History

Canada has only had two political parties who have governed the country’s affairs and destiny—the Liberal Party and the Conservative Party. Just as in the United States, the two-party approach has served our democracy well. Unlike the U.S., however, our parliamentary system leaves more room for the establishment and the sustaining presence of a third … Read more


Language Politics North of the Border

An enduring characteristic of Canadian politics in the last 50 years has been the question of language and how it plays out in the French speaking province of Québec. From the outset in 1867, Canada adopted a federal system of government at Québec’s behest, giving the constituent federated states defined constitutional jurisdictions. The Canadian Constitution … Read more


Justin Trudeau Announces Candidacy for Leadership of the Liberal Party

For a country that abhors political dynasties, the announcement by Justin Trudeau on October 2, 2012, that he would vie for the leadership of the Canadian Liberal Party drew a stream of comments and analysis. Surely, former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau (1968-1979, 1980-1984) would have been proud of his son’s decision, but he would undoubtedly … Read more


Harper Faces a Changing Québec

OTTAWA-The election landscape has changed in the predominantly-francophone province of Québec. On September 4, les Québécois elected a minority pro-independence party, le Parti québécois (PQ) with Pauline Marois at its helm. This makes life a lot simpler for Stephen Harper, Canada’s prime minister. A referendum on the separation of Québec from the rest of Canada, … Read more


The Mulroney-Reagan Free Trade Legacy

Newspapers across Canada are recalling the events and the issues related to the U.S.-Canada Free Trade Agreement (FTA) of 1987. Yes, it’s been 25 years, and the general impression in the reports seems more positive than negative. Canada’s premier newspaper, The Globe and Mail, titled it the “deal that freed Canada’’. The FTA was later … Read more


Why Canadians Admire Hillary Clinton

We may be observing U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s last trimester in this pivotal and strategic post. Hillary became a household name during her husband’s presidential years. Her subsequent six year tenure as New York Senator, along with her “break the glass ceiling” campaign for the U.S. Presidency, has made her one of the … Read more


A Tale of Two Political Leaders

A few weeks ago in a previous blog, I cited the JFK quote, “civility is not a sign of weakness.” Let me tell you a story about two politicians from different ends of the political spectrum who were not in the arena at the same time, but who share one thing in common—civility. They are … Read more

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