Justin Trudeau officially sworn in as prime minister after Stephen Harper resigns

Prime Minister launched a new era in federal politics Wednesday as his majority Liberal government took office and a cabinet of political veterans and rookie MPs was sworn in.

Trudeau appointed 30 members to his cabinet, half of them women.

He has turned to experienced hands for some of the most senior portfolios, while also putting his trust in newcomers to run other departments.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian WyldTHE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian WyldJustin Trudeau takes the oath of office as he is sworn in as prime minister of Canada at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on Wednesday, November 4, 2015.

First-time MP Catherine McKenna, from Ottawa Centre, has been appointed environment minister. The other new Liberal star from the area, Orléans MP Andrew Leslie, a former lieutenant general in the Canadian military, was not appointed to cabinet.

Among the other highlights:

– Bill Morneau, a first-time Toronto MP who was executive chairman of one of the country’s largest human resources companies, becomes finance minister.

– Former Liberal leader Stephane Dion is foreign affairs minister.

Wayne Cuddington/Ottawa CitizenWayne Cuddington/Ottawa CitizenThe new Liberal cabinet.

– John McCallum becomes Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.

– Jane Philpott, a medical physician, becomes health minister.

– B.C. MP Jody Wilson-Raybould, a leading aboriginal leader from her province, becomes Minister of Justice and Attorney General.

– Liberal veteran Ralph Goodale becomes Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

– Vancouver MP Harjit Singh Sajjan is the minister of national defence.

– Carolyn Bennett is Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs.

– New Brunswick MP Dominic Leblanc becomes leader of the government in the House.

– Calgary MP Kent Hehr gets the veterans affairs portfolio.

– Montreal MP Melanie Joly becomes minister of Canadian Heritage.

– Marc Garneau is the new minister of transport.

– Chrystia Freeland is minister of international trade.

– Scott Brison becomes President of the Treasury Board.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean KilpatrickTHE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean KilpatrickPrime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau lead the new Liberal cabinet to Rideau Hall in Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015.

As expected, the swearing-in ceremony turned into a spectacle, which Liberals are hoping will provide an immediate contrast to the Conservatives’ style of governing. Members of the new cabinet gathered in downtown Ottawa and took a bus to Rideau Hall, rather than individual limousines as Tory ministers used.

Under sunny skies, the team then debarked at the gates to the estate and walked up the tree-lined lane to the governor general’s residence.

They were met by hundreds of cheering Canadians who were invited to gather outside the residence for the event and watching the swearing-in on a large TV screen outside.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean KilpatrickTHE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean KilpatrickMembers of the public wait on the grounds of Rideau Hall before the swearing-in ceremony ofor Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau in Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015.

Trudeau had promised a slimmed-down cabinet. In forming his team, he had to balance new faces with experienced hands, geographic and minority representation, and an equal number of men and women.

He also had no choice but to leave some extremely experienced and qualified Liberal MPs out of cabinet. As a result, some surprises — and bruised egos — can be expected in coming days

Trudeau issued a written statement Wednesday when he unveiled his cabinet.

“This strong, diverse, and experienced team will serve all Canadians, and for the first time in our country’s history, there will be an equal number of women and men around the Cabinet table,” he said.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin TangTHE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin TangGovernor General David Johnston shares a laugh with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau after he was sworn in as prime minister at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015.

“Canadians expect to see their values and priorities reflected in their government, and we have listened closely to them. Canadians told us what kind of government they want, and we built the plan to make it happen.”

Trudeau said his government will invest in the economy, and strengthen the middle class.

“We will shine more light on government to ensure it remains focused on the people it is meant to serve. Openness and transparency will be our constant companions, and we will work to restore Canadians’ trust in their government and in our democracy. We are committed to the highest ethical standards and applying the utmost care in the handling of public funds.”

Trudeau promised to demonstrate “national leadership” and work with provinces and territories to take “real action” on climate change. As well, he pledged to foster a “nation-to-nation relationship” with Indigenous peoples, and offer better treatment to Canada’s military veterans and their families.

“We are committed to both the security and safety of Canadians and the protection of their rights and freedoms. We will also reinvest in our cultural and creative industries and create an immigration system grounded in both compassion and economic opportunity.”

Meanwhile, some ministers will have little time to celebrate before getting down to work.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin TangTHE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin TangPrime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau, his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau and their children Xavier and Ella-Grace arrive at Rideau Hall for a swearing-in ceremony in Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015.

The new immigration minister, for example, faces an immediate challenge after Trudeau promised to resettle 25,000 Syrian refugees by the end of the year. Refugee advocates say that is unrealistic. Trudeau will either need someone who can either make it happen, or explain why the government won’t keep its promise.


The new environment minister will have little time to get up to speed on his or her file before being thrown into the deep end at next month’s UN climate change negotiations in Paris, and expectations are high in Canada and abroad for new leadership on the issue.

Meanwhile, Aboriginals are expecting quick action on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommendations. And the defence minister will need to come up with a new plan for Canada’s war against the Islamic State after Trudeau promised to stop bombing in Iraq and Syria.

After the swearing-in of his new cabinet, Trudeau will participate in a Google Hangout with school children from five schools across Canada. He will then hold a cabinet meeting on Parliament Hill, which will be followed by a media availability in the foyer of the House of Commons.

Here is the full list of the new cabinet sworn in on Wednesday:

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale

Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay.

Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion.

Immigration Minister John McCallum.

Indigenous and Northern Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett.

Treasury Board President Scott Brison.

Government House leader Dominc LeBlanc.

Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Singh Bains.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould.

Public Services Minister Judy Foote.

International Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland.

Health Minister Jane Philpott Health.

Families, Children and Social Development Minister Jean-Yves Duclos.

Transport Minister Marc Garneau.

International Development Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau.

Natural Resources Minister James Carr.

Canadian Heritage Minister Melanie Joly.

Revenue Minister Diane Lebouthillier,

Veterans Affairs Minister Kent Hehr.

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna.

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan.

Employment Minister MaryAnn Mihychuk.

Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi.

Democratic Institutions Minister Maryam Monsef.

Sports Minister Carla Qualtrough.

Fisheries Minister Hunter Tootoo.

Science Minister Kirsty Duncan.

Status of Women’s Minister Patricia Hajdu.

Small Business Minister Bardish Chagger.

Wayne Cuddington/ Ottawa CitizenWayne Cuddington/ Ottawa CitizenJustin Trudeau arrives at Rideau Hall with his wife Sophie where there are greeted by their children and followed by Ottawa Centre MP Catherine Mackenna (L) as the Liberal government is sworn in at Rideau Hall.

About Lee Berthiaume and Mark Kennedy, Postmedia News