POLITICS

Wednesdays with @Kady replay: Layton's legacy, one year later

08/22/2012 03:21 EDT | Updated 10/22/2012 05:12 EDT
In the year since Jack Layton died, much has changed in Canadian politics.

A memorial event is planned for Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto this evening, with live music, special guests and a reading of Layton's final letter to Canadians.

In Ottawa, people gathered on Parliament Hill at for a vigil. Other remembrances, including symbolic consumption of Orange Crush (the nickname for the NDP's sweep through Quebec and into Official Opposition status in the 2011 election), will roll out from coast to coast in 12 other cities.

- RELATED: Jack Layton memorial events planned nationwide

In a special summer edition of Wednesdays with @Kady, we wanted to give our readers a chance to talk about how things look one year later.

Kady's "people's caucus" convened for a rare August session to consider what Layton's passing has meant for his party, the country... or you personally.

Today's chat featured three special guests, joining Kady in turn for parts of the conversation:

- Kathleen Monk is now the executive director of the Broadbent Institute. Her organization has organized this month's online tributes and this week's special events in Toronto and 13 other cities across Canada. But one year ago, she was in the eye of the storm helming the NDP's communications team through the difficult final weeks of Layton's life.

- British Columbia MP Nathan Cullen is now the Opposition House Leader. In the months following Layton's death, he was part of the NDP caucus that had to step up to redefine the party and put new faces forward to fill the gap. He placed third in the party's leadership contest last March.

- Jim Armour is currrently the vice-president of public affairs at Summa Strategies, a government relations (lobbying) and communications strategy firm in Ottawa. He's had two long stints on Parliament Hill over the last two decades, including serving as the director of communications for both Preston Manning and Stephen Harper through formative periods in their time in opposition. He's also watched the NDP rise and fall through several stages of its own history.

Replay our live chat from earlier today: