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Summer grilling with Jack Layton 

[PoliticsWatch updated 5:15 p.m. June 28, 2007]

OTTAWA  — NDP leader Jack Layton says he will spend most of his summer travelling the country to meet Canadians and discuss what he calls the "prosperity gap."

Layton said he and his wife, NDP MP Olivia Chow, have a trip to Portugal and the Azores planned this summer as part of Chow's campaign for a Canada-Portugal Day. 

"It will be my first visit to that part of the world for about a week," said Layton, who also plans to meet political leaders to discuss climate change and the war in Afghanistan. 

Layton tells PoliticsWatch that he looks forward to hitting the barbecue circuit this summer because he is not allowed to cook at home. 

He and Chow live with his mother-in-law, who Layton says "won't let me near the cooking process at home at all."

"I love flipping burgers," said Layton. "My favourite is any kind of lean, good Canadian beef or lamb, really any of those delicious barbecue treats. But I love flipping burgers. That's always great fun."

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