Barbara Young and John Ivison

Hi, I’m with the CBC here in Toronto. It’s Friday the 17th of September. We have Democrat Joe Biden on the hot seat for this Saturday Night live online debate on the subject of women’s issues.

CBC has organised the online debates and we think that this type of engagement is important for our viewers to hear from the living history of Canada.

In the early 1970s we saw the return of our prime minister Pierre Trudeau back into Canadian politics. At the time, the left of the political spectrum was dominated by the populist leader Tommy Douglas from the National Federation of the Independent Citizens. Then, we had the Marxist-Leninist Gordon Sinclair from the Social Credit Party – a more left wing political faction in our politics.

We welcome the Republicans (the Party of ‘The Common Man’) into Canada, who with one strong leader come to power and sweeping their agenda across the country.

There has been a lot of change since then, from Trans-Canada Highway to getting into Afghanistan, the use of force against insurgents; the first time in the country’s history that it has faced a foreign military conflict.

This event brings together two former great leaders, as we have a wide variety of viewpoints. Now more than ever, Canada is at a crossroads.

What will our future hold for women’s rights? Education? Poverty? Health care? Diversity and inclusion? Access to housing? Poverty reduction? Environment? And how will we move forward as a country.

Joe Biden is a veteran from the US presidency who is now pondering a run for President of the United States.

And among Democrats, there is a lot of speculation that he may run for President again. This event gives Canadians the opportunity to hear from him directly about women’s issues.

Canadians are used to seeing political leaders brought down or even impeached for scandal and infamy. These are called scandals, or controversies, which we see even more in politics today.

At the same time, however, our system stands on a foundation of transparency, accountability and clarity. The last US president with criminal charges, but of course, he won two more terms. And Canadian politics today has been the least scandalous of the developed countries.

This is the history of Canada, back in the 1970s. This is the Canada that we all know and love.

Is Mr. Biden the right man to help our country through the period of transition? Or is he the worst of us all? These are the questions that Canadians will seek answers to in the room.

This is the Saturday Debate: Is Joe Biden is Good for Canada?

This is the final weekend of the popular Parliamentary Broadcast Week, which has been widely celebrated with a variety of programs that have been a mainstay in Canadian public media over the past thirty years.

These programs have helped to create a loyal audience and are also a valued tool for the Canadian parliamentary system. The guests featured on our shows are leaders of diverse party stripes, experts who have helped shape our country’s political debate.

All four Sunday programs over the last week have combined to clock over 100 million total viewers. Across the week, our viewers range from three generations of Canadians, across all regions and demographics.

These programs may be old fashioned, but our audiences embrace the unique brand of news and information that these shows serve. We simply call it “heartland politics”.

We thank you for watching all of the shows. When we say, watch on Saturday, we really mean it. Be sure to take part in social media. And keep up with us on Twitter at @CBCNewsCanada or on Facebook.

All the best,

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