Oct. 22, 2019

Minority Liberal government has a lot of fences to mend

Congratulations to Paul Manly for winning two federal elections in just under six months – that’s almost unheard of in Canadian politics.

And it wasn’t easy, the opposition threw everything they had into trying to unseat the Green Party rookie member of Parliament. The Greens reinforced that the May byelection victory was not a fluke. As a matter of fact, the final figures Monday night were very similar to what each party got in May.

Like the national campaign, the New Democrats went with a negative campaign, misrepresenting the Green platform. That was disappointing.

People constantly preach against hate, but the NDP kept up their decade-old campaign against former Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper. (A little secret, Harper was not running in this election).

And the insults and attacks were aimed at current Conservative leader Andrew Scheer with messages like “we don’t trust Conservatives” and anything to stop Conservatives.

And Scheer was not in the clear either.

And all parties hammered Prime Minister Trudeau, but he has the track record of actual obstruction of justice and tons of other misbehaviours. 

Another distraction for the NDP was leader Jagmeet Singh’s early drive to form a coalition government with the Liberals, even before voting day. That may have led some voters questioning if that’s what’s coming, why not vote Liberal in the first place?

Most of the campaigns were based on telling voters about the other parties, and not enough about themselves. And that was what substituted for real policy which voters could be enticed with. The handout promises did not come with the backing about how they could be implemented while reducing government revenue sources from our resources. Canadians are not buying into the “free stuff” – prescription drugs, hundreds of thousands of affordable housing units and more.

The new buzz word preached from almost every podium is “progressive” - socialism in a new wrapper.

Constantly preaching the end to pipelines, the energy sector and mining resources did not catch the fancy of voters In the west. And they could have done some research into the ongoing climate catastrophe fear mongering, which an increasing number of Canadians are not buying into. And, of course, the carbon dioxide tax that’s scheduled to keep rising and rising. Being against everything is not appealing. NDP representation in Parliament was cut virtually in half. The Liberals also lost a large number of seats, and Conservatives picked up a bunch of seats.

With that in mind, it was an eyebrow raiser when Trudeau’s victory message was about bringing unity to the country. He first made that pledge four years ago, and look what we have now – an energized Bloc Quebecois which has the third largest representation in Parliament – and rejection of the Liberals in western Canada. There are a lot of fences to mend between now and whenever this minority government has to go to the people again.

We even heard the word Wexit on Monday night, a play on the British Brexit. Quebecers and Western Canadians are not a happy lot these days.

editor@nanaimonet.com