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By NICK TAYLOR-VAISEY and SUE ALLAN
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Happy Hanukkah. Thanks for reading Ottawa Playbook. We’re your hosts, Nick Taylor-Vaisey and Sue Allan. This week, we take stock of the whirlwind that was 2022. Today we present the year in numbers. Plus, we do the math on which lobbyists registered the most meetings. Also, an excerpt from the farewell speech Jim Carr had hoped to deliver in Parliament.
The scene outside a Service Canada office earlier this year. | Darryl Dyck, The Canadian Press
565,600 MINUTES — How do you measure a year? In rate hikes, in resets, in late flights, in waiting queues. In ATIPs, in Bitcoin, in boosters, in bouncy castles.
What’s your measure of 2022? We're all ears.
1: Toronto airport’s ranking on a list of top 10 world airports for delays during the summer of 2022.
2: Party leaders who resigned after the Ontario provincial election.
3: Minutes of standing ovation for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy after his address to Parliament.
17,376: Covid-19 cases reported in Canada, Nov. 27 to Dec. 3.
7: Number of times Bank of Canada raised the benchmark interest rate.
164: Page count of Bill C-32, the legislation that implemented pieces of CHRYSTIA FREELAND’s Fall Economic Statement and 2022 budget.
356,981.70: Dollars and cents spent on hotel rooms for Canada’s official delegation to the funeral of QUEEN ELIZABETH II.
10: Days the Emergencies Act was employed before it was revoked by Prime Minister JUSTIN TRUDEAU.
533: Charges Ottawa police laid during the “Freedom Convoy” occupation.
31: Hearing days at the Public Order Emergency Commission, aka the Rouleau inquiry.
73: Number of Conservatives who voted to oust ERIN O’TOOLE as party leader on Feb. 2.
678,708: Party members eligible to vote in the ensuing Conservative leadership contest.
68.15: Percent of support PIERRE POILIEVRE picked up in the Sept. 10 vote.
51.4: Percent of support offered to United Conservative Party leader JASON KENNEY during his leadership review.
48: Number of recommendations Defense Minister ANITA ANAND promised to implement from former Supreme Court justice LOUISE ARBOUR's report on ending sexual misconduct in Canada's military.
23: Companies that received contracts connected to the federal government’s ArriveCan app.
40: Number of candidates in the Mississauga—Lakeshore byelection won by Liberal CHARLES SOUSA.
77: Age of ALEXA MCDONOUGH, the first woman to lead a major political party in Canada, when she died in January.
12 million: Estimated number of Rogers subscribers who lost service for much of July 8 after a massive outage on the company's nationwide network.
343: Number of seats in the expanded House of Commons, the boundaries of which were redrawn by provincial commissions — and redrawn again after public hearings.
365: Number of days this year without an official visit to Canada from President JOE BIDEN.
2025: Expiry date on Liberal-NDP supply and confidence agreement struck in March. (June 2025, to be specific.)
Another question for Playbook readers:
What wasn’t on your BINGO card at the start of 2022? Drop us a line. We’ll share a selection of your replies later this week.
A memorial for the late Jim Carr. | Sean Kilpatrick, The Canadian Press
IN MEMORIAM — Winnipeg’s Centennial Concert Hall was filled with words, music and affection Saturday morning in celebration of JIM CARR.
Former Liberal Cabinet minister LLOYD AXWORTHY read from a MARY OLIVER poem. JUSTIN TRUDEAU recounted the way MPs from across the aisle had paid tribute to Carr’s decency and kindness. “We are heartbroken,” the prime minister said.
The MP and former Cabinet minister died Dec. 12 after living with blood cancer since 2019.
— At the service: U.K. High Commissioner RALPH GOODALE, Edmonton Mayor AMARJEET SOHI, former Manitoba premier GARY FILMON, Cabinet ministers SEAMUS O’REGAN, RANDY BOISSONNAULT and DAN VANDAL, former ambassador GARY DOER, Liberal MPs TERRY DUGUID and GREG FERGUS, former Cabinet minister MARYAM MONSEF, Liberal Party president candidate SACHIT MEHRA.
During his eulogy, BEN CARR said his father believed strongly in public service and collective responsibility. “He never missed the opportunity to turn something into a learning moment. For me, these were lessons learned from listening, watching and talking with him over the years.”
Ben shared lines from the farewell speech his father had hoped to deliver last week at the close of the parliamentary session.
— For the record: “Mr. Speaker, as I rise today and stand on the floor of this chamber for what may be the last time, my spirit is as strong as ever, bolstered by the inspiration I have drawn from recent moments in this House and the kindness poured into me by all of you. I’d like to share a few observations, if I may, learned over the course of a lifetime.
“Never stop learning. Keep an open mind. Speak only when you have taken the time to consider your words carefully. Treat the moment in which you choose to speak them with equal care. Seek to build bridges and consensus, add chairs around the dinner table. Most importantly, Mr. Speaker, be kind to each other.”
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MEETING MAVENS — The lobbyist set is entering a short hibernation as parliamentarians escape the nation's capital for the holidays. The breather follows a year-long lobbying bonanza. A federal registry lists 29,476 meetings so far — roughly 121 per day, excluding weekends and holidays. That's a lot of paperwork.
— The busiest bodies: Who organized the most meetings? Playbook did the math.
The consultant at the top of the list was Capital Hill Group president DAVID ANGUS, a longtime Hill denizen who once worked for BRIAN MULRONEY and BILL DAVIS. Angus logged 225 tete-a-tetes with public office holders in 2022. He carries 76 active clients. Busiest month: May.
Sussex Strategy senior associate DAN LOVELL ranks second with 178 meetings — and only started his gig in May after leaving Liberal MP VANCE BADAWEY's office. He lists 18 active clients. Busiest month: August.
MARC DESMARAIS, National PR's VP of government relations, clocks in third at 139 meetings on behalf of 31 active clients. Busiest month: January.
Rounding out the top 10 among consultant lobbyists: Public Affairs Counsel's ISABEL METCALFE, Sandstone Group/Hill & Knowlton Strategies' KEVIN BOSCH, Sussex Strategy's INGRID RAVARY-KONOPKA, Sandstone's NARESH RAGHUBEER, PAA Advisory's DAN PFEFFER, Counsel Public Affairs' JOHN DELACOURT and Crestview Strategy's SCOTTY GREENWOOD.
— Coming from inside the house: Nobody racked up more 2022 entries in the lobbyist registry than TOMMY KULCZYK, the general manager of Breakfast Club of Canada whose name is attached to 232 meetings. (That doesn't mean Kulczyk was in the room every time, only that he signs off on entries.)
The charity runs school breakfast programs, and is pushing for a federally funded national school food program. Most recent target: Treasury Board President MONA FORTIER.
The rest of the top five in-house lobbying efforts, with number of meetings in parentheses: BETH POTTER's Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (174), JIM EVERSON's Canola Council of Canada (171), PERRIN BEATTY's Canadian Chamber of Commerce (162), and the University of Alberta (156).
The rest of the top 10: JAMES IRVING's JD Irving (149), RICK WHITE's Canadian Canola Growers Association (147), ALAIN DUPUIS' Federation of Francophone and Acadian Communities (144), SEVERN CULLIS-SUZUKI's David Suzuki Foundation (144), and the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (142).
Watch Playbook for the rest of the week for more end-of-year lobbyist registry data-crunching.
— Prime Minister JUSTIN TRUDEAU is in Ottawa for "private meetings." He'll also speak with the Prime Minister of Barbados, MIA MOTTLEY.
11:45 a.m. Deputy Prime Minister CHRYSTIA FREELAND and Minister of Families and Children and Social Development KARINA GOULD will join Ontario’s Minister of Education STEPHEN LECCE in Toronto for a “major announcement” on early learning and child care.
1 p.m. Foreign Affairs Minister MÉLANIE JOLY will discuss Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy as part of the Montreal Council of Foreign Relations’ politics series. Her remarks will be followed by a media avail at 1:45 p.m.
10 p.m. (7 p.m. PT) NDP leader JAGMEET SINGH celebrates Hanukkah in Vancouver.
— POLITICO's LOUISE GUILLOT writes from Montreal this morning: "There's a U.S.-sized hole at the heart of the global effort to halt and reverse biodiversity loss following Monday's deal at the COP15 summit."
— CP's STEPHANIE TAYLOR decodes PIERRE POILIEVRE's plan to win over new Canadians. CPC devotees will note some familiar names on those blueprints.
— ALEX BOUTILIER explains what government documents tell us about election meddling.
— The Herle Burly pod welcomes three policy minds who talk 2023: SEAN SPEER, JENNIFER ROBSON and TYLER MEREDITH.
— The Star's ALTHIA RAJ asks: "If the prime minister believes an apology is all that’s required to respond to ethical lapses, why should MARY NG sideline her career by offering to step down?"
— The West of Centre pod discusses a bonkers year in Alberta politics and looks ahead to another in 2023.
— DONNA KENNEDY-GLANS speaks with convoy lawyer BRENDAN MILLERfor a National Post dispatch. One revelation: "Getting himself kicked out of the inquiry was part of his team’s strategy."
— CAIWEI CHEN writes for Wired: Instagram is a site of protest for the Chinese diaspora.
— The Jan. 6 select committee is preparing to unveil its most comprehensive case yet that DONALD TRUMP attempted to subvert the transfer of presidential power to JOE BIDEN.Our colleagues in Washington set the scene.
— A new report from the International Institute for Sustainable Development: Why Canada is unlikely to sell the last barrel of oil.
— From the Institute for Fiscal Studies and Democracy: Will the federal fiscal structure remain sustainable with the new health transfers demanded by the premiers and territorial leaders?
For POLITICO Pro subscribers, here’s our latest policy newsletter from ZI-ANN LUM: Is Manchin’s loss Ottawa’s gain?
Other headlines for Pro readers: — EU reaches deal on critical climate policy after marathon talks. — TikTok national-security deal roiled by internal strife. — Cash clash threatens to derail biodiversity talks. — U.S. avoids talk of China’s 5G dominance at Africa summit. — World Bank’s Pandemic Fund to issue first call for proposals. — U.S. laughs off China WTO 'destroyer' barb.
Birthdays: HBD to retired Yukon MP LARRY BAGNELL and Alberta MLA IRFAN SABIR. Belated greetings to SCOTTY GREENWOOD and SHELLEY PAGE.
Movers and shakers: Syntax Strategic is launching a health practice to help clients "navigate the complex healthcare system." That work will be headed up by MARJOLAINE PROVOST, a former d-comm to Health Minister JEAN-YVES DUCLOS. Canadian Medical Association past-president KATHARINE SMART will offer "strategic counsel and guidance."
Former KARINA GOULD staffer JENNA GHASSABEHstarts this week as a special assistant on comms in the Prime Minister's Office.
Foreign Minister MÉLANIE JOLY has a new special adviser for parliamentary affairs: MATTHEW TRNKUS, who leaves his post as a special adviser on committees in Whip STEVE MACKINNON's office.
ALYSSA DOIG is the new director of Conservative Caucus Services in Poilievre's office.
As he officially retires from the Hill, longtime Liberal staffer GEORGE YOUNG leaves parting thoughts on LinkedIn about the people with whom he worked: "The list is endless and as each person comes to mind I am reminded that the essence of what we do is really just the people — those we meet and those we serve."
Spotted: Ottawa Centre MP YASIR NAQVI, celebrating the new back-to-work plan for federal public servants. (RIP his email inbox from angry bureaucrats who want to WFH.)
Transport Minister OMAR ALGHABRA, in Qatar to celebrate Canada's co-hosting of the 2026 World Cup ... National Airlines Council CEO JEFF MORRISON, plotting cross-border air travel strategies with U.S. ambo DAVID COHEN ... TERRY MOSHER, sharing a cartoon the Montreal Gazette would not print ... CTV's MIKE LE COUTEUR, in full Christmas regalia.
Pollster DARRELL BRICKER, offering winter business travel trips. Solid advice: "Shoes are important. Forget fashion. Wear something that works both inside and out, snow and otherwise."
Elections Canada records, which show a recent Edmonton Liberal fundraiser feat. RANDY BOISSONNAULT and SEAN FRASER drew 18 attendees.
Desjardins senior director of Canadian economics RANDALL BARTLETT, penning a Dr. Seuss-themed poem aimed at TIFF MACKLEM: "How the Governor stole Christmas". Get a load of the spicy final stanza:
— “I’ll say that I’ll stop,” the boyish-looking Governor shouted / But what if he was wrong again and people wanted him ousted?
— Find the latest House committee meetings here.
— Keep track of Senate committees here.
Friday’s answer: Sen. DAN CHRISTMAS was the first Mi'kmaq senator. Sen. BRIAN FRANCIS is the second.
“Both senators have shown the meaning of leadership in the Upper Chamber,” retired senator JIM MUNSON tells Playbook. “Living proof you don’t have to speak loud to be heard.”
Props to LISA KIRBIE, TISHA ASHTON, DELIAH BERNARD, NANCI WAUGH, JENN KEAY, BOOTS TAYLOR-VAISEY, BOB GORDON and BRAM ABRAMSON.
Today’s question: Approximately how many people used the C$8.2-million ice rink set up on Parliament Hill in 2017?
Send your answer to [email protected]
Playbook wouldn’t happen without: Luiza Ch. Savage and David Cohen.
Kangertech Vape Want to grab the attention of movers and shakers on Parliament Hill? Want your brand in front of a key audience of Ottawa influencers? Playbook can help. Contact Jesse Shapiro to find out how: [email protected] .