Party Leaders Prove Conclusively That “Better Is Always Possible”
Posted October 25, 2019
Five of the Federal party leaders have reasons to be disappointed by the result of Monday’s election. Their close advisers were likely part of the problem so they can’t be relied upon for candid criticism of the campaigns.
Therefore, as a public service, herewith are some unsolicited thoughts.
Memo To: Maxime Bernier. You lost. Your campaign was tinged with anti-immigrant rhetoric and was a comfortable home for racist sentiment. You lost your own seat. Good.
Memo To: Elizabeth May. You lost. Your party came a distant fifth despite the active support for climate action by many young people. Next time, perhaps the Green Party can have a more thoughtful plan for reducing carbon emissions. Voters did not find this year’s version credible.
Wind and solar are great, but you need a reliable source of variable power to balance the load when it’s cloudy or dark, or the wind subsides. Hydroelectric power is ideal for this and the additional electricity it can provide is essential to replacing fossil fuels. But you oppose hydropower. It is not without issues, but do you think they are greater than the threat of climate change?
You did not give much attention to other topics. If you can’t be credible on your own topic, you will not be taken seriously on the others.
Memo To: Jagmeet Singh. You lost. Your vote share dropped by more than 3%. Yes, you had a decent debate performance in a weak field, but you dropped from 44 to 24 seats, almost extinguishing the NDP’s once-powerful Quebec caucus.
The Liberals have a strong minority. Yes, they will have to pay attention to you but you are in no position to dictate terms.
Better start planning for the next vote which will come sooner than you expect if the Liberals feel the wind in their sails. The Greens more or less copied your hard-left economics and outbid you on climate change. What are you going to do to offer a distinctive message?
Memo To: Andrew Scheer. You lost. You had a golden opportunity to replace a discredited Prime Minister Trudeau. Your platform was needlessly right-wing when there was lots of unoccupied space available in the political centre.
You and Trudeau deserve equal shares of the blame for the negative tone of the campaign. More importantly, you failed to communicate a credible persona or a positive vision of Canada’s future.
Next year, the party will hold a leadership review. You need to persuade the members that you can do a lot better.
Spend a lot of time listening to real people, not political operators. Get a credible plan for climate change. Improve your French. If you get a second try, don’t agree to a second French debate unless there is a second English debate.
Memo To: Justin Trudeau. You won and you lost. A million more people voted for you in 2015 than in 2019. You have the support of fewer than one in three voters in Canada (Scheer had more), fewer than one in seven voters in Alberta, and fewer than one in eight in Saskatchewan. You have no seats in those provinces. You lost 27 seats and it could easily have been a lot more.
By the way, the Bloq Quebecois is deeply grateful that you insisted on two debates in French while there was only one in English.
You are the Prime Minister of all of Canada. There is a great risk of western alienation. Don’t throw those in the west under the bus.
Your recommitment to the Trans Mountain Pipeline is a good start. Get it done.
Fighting climate change is about reducing the consumption of fossil fuels, not production. Search for ways (Hydro? Nuclear?) to replace natural gas as an energy source for oil sands extraction.
Promote other hydro projects in Quebec, Labrador, Manitoba, British Columbia to replace fossil fuel plants domestically and in willing states south of the border.
What with SNC Lavalin, Blackface, and trips abroad that embarrassed the country, you were a liability to your party. Stop looking so pleased with yourself.
There you have it, everyone. Unfiltered advice that you may not be getting from your usual sources. No need to thank me.
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