Several Trudeau allies shuffled out of cabinet, will not seek re-election

On Wednesday, a revitalized cabinet will replace at least four colleagues during a ceremony at Rideau Hall, including three Toronto-area ministers and one B.C. minister, who will not be seeking re-election.

Several Trudeau allies shuffled out of cabinet, will not seek re-election
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
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According to senior government sources, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is set to announce significant changes to his cabinet.

On Wednesday, a revitalized cabinet will replace at least four colleagues during a ceremony at Rideau Hall, including three Toronto-area ministers and one B.C. minister, who will not be seeking re-election.

The CBC confirmed that Transportation Minister Omar Alghabra will step aside from cabinet after serving 11 years in public office. In a video on social media, he indicated he would not seek another term as MP.

Since holding the portfolio in January 2021, Alghabra has faced several high-profile challenges, including significant delay issues at airports last summer, issuing travel bans on the unvaccinated, and most recently, a strike at the Port of Vancouver and Prince George that caused significant disruptions to Canada's supply chain.

It's estimated the 13-day work stoppage cost the economy $6.5 billion and created a shipping backlog that will take until at least October to clear.

"The prime minister deserves a cabinet committed to running in the next federal campaign," said Alghabra. "This was not an easy decision." 

Public Services and Procurement Minister Helena Jaczek announced Tuesday morning she also would not run again in the next election. The Ontario MP told supporters it "has been an immense honour and a privilege to represent our community at both the provincial and federal levels."

"After 50 years of public service as a family doctor, Regional Medical Of Health and Commissioner of Health Services, Member of Provincial Parliament, and now Member of Parliament for Markham-Stouffville, I have decided that I will not seek re-election after my current term," she tweeted.

In addition, Mental Health and Addictions Minister Carolyn Bennett told reporters Monday she would not seek re-election, with Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray making a similar announcement.

"My work in politics and time serving my community federally and provincially as an elected official has been the honour of my life," Murray said the following morning.

Government officials knowledgeable of the cabinet shuffle said the change is timely and necessary to refocus the government's economic priorities, especially housing.

Several Liberal sources told the state broadcaster that Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino is also at risk of being removed from cabinet, owing to the controversial Paul Bernardo transfer and pushback on gun control legislation and the foreign interference file.

Trudeau did not respond directly to questions from the press last week on whether he still had confidence in Mendicino.

"I have an amazing team in Ottawa and an amazing group of MPs right across the country who are committed to serving their country every single day, and anyone in my cabinet, by definition, has my confidence," he said.

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