It has been over a month since the last election, and Canadians will finally learn who their newest federal cabinet ministers are.. in just under two weeks.
Earlier this morning (October 15th) PMO officials announced that the cabinet swearing in will take place on Tuesday October 26th at Rideau Hall.
Also announced was that Parliament will resume almost a month later, November 22nd. This will start with the election of the Speaker of the House of Commons and a Speech from the Throne.
The Speech from the Throne will be historic, as it will be delivered by the first indigenous Governor General of Canada, the Rt. Hon. Mary Simon. Simon was sworn into office in late July.
For a Prime Minister who wanted to toss Canadians into an election and wanted to give them a voice on the direction of the government, he sure is taking his sweet time to getting back to work.
People are struggling, people are trying to find some sense of normality in this hectic world, and each day that passes and the government isn't back in the halls of powers doing their job means another day Canadians are struggling for help.
This is a very odd timeline that the Prime Minister has set for himself. After the 43 General election in 2019, a new cabinet was sworn in 29 days after the election, and then parliament resumed 16 days later on December 5th.
In 2015, Trudeaus first mandate, the election was October 19th, 2015 the Cabinet was sworn in on November 4th - 16 days after the election. Then Parliament officially kicked off on December 3rd - 30 days after cabinet being sworn in. This was the first mandate so a longer transition was understandable.
But in 2021, three mandates later we are now waiting almost 2 full months to resume parliament? We can and must do better.
The 44th Cabinet will be the first time Canadians will see if Trudeau heard from the electorate. He has some positions to fill, change, and add to ensure gender parity, regional parity, and finish off this pandemic.
Trudeau might be moving some embattled ministers including current Defence Minister the Hon. Harjit Sajjan (BC - Vancouver South) and current Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations the Hon. Carolyn Bennett (ON - Toronto-St.Pauls). Sajjan and Bennett have been a stain on the government over the last 12 months. Sajjan handling of the Sexual Misconduct allegations in the Military and Bennett for her handling the Crown-Indigenous file.
One position I believe Opposition parties are looking at in this shuffle is the health file. Will the Hon. Patty Hajdu (ON Thunder Bay - Superior North) be swapped for someone else, or will Trudeau stick with the person he brought to the dance prior to the pandemic starting in March? Looking at the Liberal Bench there isn't a heir apparent to the health ministry but that doesn't mean he wouldn't give a newcomer a chance, Maybe Leah Taylor Roy (ON- Aurora-Oak Ridges-Richmond Hill)?
The Prime Minsiter will also be looking to replace cabinet minsiters who lost their seats in September. Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development the Hon. Maryam Monsef (ON - Peterborough-Kawartha) Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and Canadian Coast Guard the Hon. Bernadette Jordan ( NS - South Shore-St.Margarets) and Minister of Seniors the Hon. Deb Schulte (ON - King Vaughan), these portfolios will need to be replaced.
Also Trudeau will need to find a replacement for retiring Minister of Infrastructure and Communities the Hon. Catherine McKenna (ON - Ottawa Centre)
Trudeau has made the pledge to continue with his gender parity cabinet. Which means he will be looking for fresh blood to fill those vacancies. He will also be juggling regional balance as well. The September election brought new-ish Liberal voices to Ottawa, Edmonton Centre MP Randy Bossionnault and Calgary Skyview MP-elect George Chahal will be serious contenders for a cabinet position to quell western anger.
Chahal's chances at a cabinet position off the bat were high, but due to the ongoing Calgary Police Service, and RCMP investigation into election theft it wouldn't be shocking to see him overstepped until the issues are resolved.
One cabinet position was announced days after the election, Trudeau announced that current Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland (ON- University-Rosedale) will be staying put. Freeland has been in the position of Minister of Finance since August of 2020 when former MP and Minister of Finance Bill Morneau resigned.
Trudeau has a balancing act to accomplish over the next week. No matter what happens on October 26th Liberal MP's are going to have a large hill to climb. Canadians are sick of the waiting and want action on some major files.
The long wait isn't doing anyone or anything good.
So Prime Minister, get your act together and get the government moving.
Editorial Note: We will be live via youtube covering the cabinet swearing in ceremony.