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Feds must be as transparent as possible on COVID-19 response, former minister says

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Former Liberal public safety minister Ralph Goodale says the federal government must be as transparent as possible about how it is choosing to respond to COVID-19.

Goodale says in an emergency situation Canadians must be able to have absolute trust in their officials and, unless the government is forthright, that won’t happen.

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He says that includes keeping Parliament, provinces and the public in the loop.

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The Liberals faced major criticism last week when their emergency aid bill for COVID-19 contained broad taxing, spending and borrowing powers that would extend well over a year.

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Goodale says he’s not sure why the government did that, but doesn’t believe they were trying to hide anything as they did give the bill to the opposition parties ahead of time for review.

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One of the outcomes over the ensuing debate was a guarantee that House of Commons committees would continue to meet by teleconference to scrutinize the government, a process that gets underway today.