CBC Critic Gets Fox News North TV Gig

Ottawa scribe Brian Lilley to host primetime talker on Sun TV News.

TORONTO – Having devoted much newspaper ink to discrediting the Canadian Broadcasting Corp., Ottawa parliamentary columnist Brian Lilley will host his own primetime show on Sun TV News, the upstart right-wing all-news channel to bow here on April 18.

 Byline With Brian Lilley is being billed by Quebecor Media as a TV talker for the little guy.

"Brian has built a following from coast to coast as a columnist who offers average Canadians a voice in the news media," Luc Lavoie, head of development for Sun TV News, said in a statement Tuesday.

"His show will cut to the heart of the issues that impact everyday working people and their families,” he added.

Lilley built his reputation working for Quebecor Media’s Sun newspaper chain and churning out Down the Drain-branded columns that criticized the CBC -- already in a heated rivalry with the CTV network -- as a state broadcaster that burdens the Canadian taxpayer.

Now Sun TV News, billed by critics as Fox News North for its right wing slant, will join battle with existing all-news cable channels operated by CBC and CTV, CBC News Network and CTV News Channel.

The conservative all-news channels’ feuding with the CBC and CTV in the lead-up to its launch has been both in public and behind the scenes.

Even Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper was drawn into the fray after it was revealed that he and Quebecor Media executives lunched in New York City with Rupert Murdoch and Fox News president Roger Ailes.

That forced Quebecor Media to disavow any links between Sun TV News and Fox News, as critics claimed, or that Harper's conservative government had conspired to bring a Fox-style news channel to Canada.

And just to show Murdoch’s fingerprints won’t be on Sun TV News, Quebecor Media will purchase international content for its all-news channel from CNN, not Fox News, according to the Canadian Press newswire service.