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Federal parties aligning on need for speed with anti-foreign meddling bill

A week of political debate over a shocking report alleging that some parliamentarians aided foreign meddling in Canadian politics has solidified one point of consensus: the need to pass an anti-foreign meddling bill before the next federal election.

Bill C-70, dubbed the «Countering Foreign Interference Act,» was introduced in early May and is currently under consideration by a parliamentary committee on public safety and national security.

Late last month, the Conservative opposition offered to help pass the bill swiftly so that its measures are in place before the next federal election.

«Conservatives will work in good faith to ensure the rapid progress of Bill C-70 through the House while ensuring sufficient scrutiny of the bill's measures,» Conservative foreign affairs critic Michael Chong said in a letter at the time.

In an interview on that aired Sunday, NDP MP Jenny Kwan — who says CSIS has told her she has been targeted by the Chinese government — said some amendments to the bill would be introduced, but that it did need to be in place before the next election.

«That process will unfold, but absolutely this law needs to be in place before the next election,» Kwan told CBC chief political correspondent Rosemary Barton.

The Bloc Québécois also told CBC News it would be putting forward some amendments to the legislation. The bill was unanimously sent forward to committee consideration late last month.

Bill C-70 would introduce new criminal provisions against deceptive or surreptitious acts, allow for the broader sharing of sensitive information and establish a foreign influence transparency registry.

The bill recognizes that states might engage in interference to advance foreign political goals, and can employ people to act

Read more on cbc.ca