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On the Hill: Tories tackle electoral reform

OTTAWA - The Harper government is poised to announce proposed legislative reforms to Canada's electoral system.

Pierre Poilievre, the minister in charge of democratic reform, will unveil the latest plan today at a morning news conference in Ottawa.

The changes come amid accusations that the Conservatives themselves have circumvented the law on a number of fronts.

In the 2011 election, thousands of voters in Guelph, Ont., received fraudulent pre-recorded calls, or "robocalls," directing them to the wrong polling station.

Conservative MP Dean Del Mastro is facing charges under the current Canada Elections Act, accused of overspending his 2008 campaign limit and of filing a false report.

The Tories have also been under fire since the 2006 election, when a so-called "in and out" scheme was used to take advantage of a loophole in spending rules.

Elsewhere on Parliament Hill, the collection of metadata by one of Canada's spy agencies at Canadian airports is expected to once again figure prominently in question period in the House of Commons.

Statistics Canada is also scheduled to release figures for stockpiles of principal field crops for December.

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