What was supposed to be an exercise in showing how good the NDP could be at managing the public purse and proposing sensible, balanced policies turned into the usual radical, job-killing, tax-raising, disorganized chaos for which the left wing has always been known.
Whomever is in charge of event scheduling for the federal New Democrats ought to be fired today -- how in heavens did the NDP wind up holding its all-important policy convention on the same weekend the Liberals were to crown their new leader? Were Christmas eve and day already booked at the convention centre?
Democratic House leader, Nancy Pelosi, recently tried to meet with Canadian New Democrat Party ("NDP") Leader Thomas Mulcair, in Washington, under th...
The first impediment to ascension the Ol' Boys' Club -- or the Liberal Party -- has imposed is a hefty $75,000 entry fee to run for Party Leader. That's 65 per cent more than the national income average or what most of us call "a small fortune." Is this a way for a third place party to renew interest with the Canadian people? A party that's lost its compass is doomed to lose the legions voters who have strayed outside the once broad LPC umbrella.
The media seem obsessed with the difficulty of creating party unity and "healing the wounds" of the campaign. I really don't get a sense there will be a lot of wounds. The opportunity for growth will surely make the party put aside their differences and work together under Thomas Mulcair's leadership.
Mulcair, throughout his career, has displayed the Harper-esque confidence, stubbornness, and vitriol that can allow a supposed underdog to keep fighting until he wins -- as Harper did. Thomas Mulcair is not Stephen Harper, but, he may just be the closest thing the NDP has ever had to him.
The real campaign being waged in a leadership race happens a long way away from the television debates and the convention floor. It's waged in community centres in Surrey B.C. and Longeuil, bars in Halifax and Biggar, and on the phone every day. The ground game is political trench warfare.
Should Thomas Mulcair lose the big race on Saturday, Monday's editorial pages will doubtlessly be filled with all manner of convoluted post-mortems as the punditocracy struggles to find the reason their golden boy's party turned against him.
If Mulcair doesn't win, the pundit class tells us that Quebec will go back to the Bloc and we'll be worse off than we were before. Is that even true? And how do all these calculations change if Bob Rae doesn't step down as planned? All I know is, I'm kind of glad I'm not voting in this one.
Over the weekend I attended an official NDP leadership debate in Montreal and two candidates took time to reaffirm their support for Quebec sovereignty. Either these New Democrats really mean what they say -- in which case they are dangerous -- or they don't, and hence don't deserve the support of Canadians for lying about their beliefs on the quintessential issue of national unity. Take your pick.
NDP leader hopefuls have made changes to our democratic system part of their platforms, and it's become an electoral issue. In a national election where three parties with a reasonable chance of power compete, and a range of other issues balance out in close ridings, electoral reform could play a decisive role.
The NDP leadership race is currently running neck-in-neck with Arctic Air in the contest to see who can produce the last compelling form of government-run entertainment. So the quest for our friends in the press has been to find some angle on the race beyond the traditional "Hey, who's winning?" narrative.
Attempting to follow the ins and outs of the NDP campaign is a bit like trying to watch a horse race in the dark: you can place bets, but the fun ends there. One has to pity all the poor political reporters across the land being dispatched to "cover" a race which they now openly profess to be analyzing solely on the basis of random hunches and pet theories.
For the next couple of months the Americans will be participating in an exercise in mass democracy entirely without precedent or equivalent in our sad dominion, and offering a thoroughly irritating reminder of just how backwards and elitist the Canadian party system remains in contrast.
The current Conservative government has seen fit to offer breaks only to the wealthy, exacerbating the growing gap between the rich and the rest of us. Families need help getting childcare, but instead of creating new affordable spaces, the Conservatives offer a tax break that doesn't cover the cost of a week's care for a single child.
Say what you will, but Mulcair has bonafides in the environmental field and as Canada abandons international climate accords like Kyoto, any opposition leader -- let alone Prime Minister -- needs to understand the environment file deeply, and the role our environment plays in our economic future.