A rebel outpost on Sparks street
Back when I worked as a copy editor, a million years ago, we used to joke that we could put out a whole other newspaper with the material we had cut out of the pages. We mused about setting up a transmitter on the roof, reading the edited stuff over the airwaves and calling it the rebel radio broadcast. Well, this new political blog at the Star will operate a little bit like that.
You can come here to find some of the background, context, gossip - and fun - behind the political coverage you're reading in the newspaper. I'll tell you about what we're hearing behind the scenes and point out things you might be missing in front of the scenes. I'll be linking to other websites and blogs that may be creating political buzz too. The idea will be to make readers feel like they're taking a stroll down the Sparks Street mall in Ottawa, which is a little like Main street in the small town of Canada's capital.
We'll get this rolling in earnest tomorrow - budget day in Ottawa. Like most other reporters in the parliamentary press gallery, I'll be "locked up" at the drafty old railway station known as the Government Conference Centre. We get a chance to read the budget and buy $20 snacks from around 9:30 until 4 p.m., on the condition that we stay incommunicado until Finance Minister James Flaherty gets up to read the budget speech - and I'll be live blogging here as he delivers the details.
And that's just the opening act - the big story tomorrow will be the Liberals' reaction and whether this budget triggers the collapse of Prime Minister Stephen Harper's minority government.