The political door will not be hitting Mr. Harper as he exits to make room for Prime Minister-elect Justin Trudeau.
Last week everyone was asking, “What do you think will happen?”
This week, it’s, “Did you see that coming?”
Short answer, yes, but not to the extent by which things rolled out.
In my column two weeks ago I outlined the familiar pattern of the pseudo-fear voters attempt to instill in any government. Going back a month or six weeks, it looked like even the NDP had a realistic shot at power.
Then the tide turned as judgment day neared and the Liberals were on the move.
Canada’s election night was over like the 2014 Super Bowl when Seattle crushed the Denver Broncos before many fans had had a chance to stuff their first handful of popcorn in their respective faces.
The sea of red in Atlantic Canada not just set the tone for the night but booted Stephen Harper out the door, showed Jack Layton was the NDP surge in the last election and even kept the Bloc boneheads from gaining party status.
I’d say that’s a solid showing, you?
Simply, I do not believe there was ever any sense that Canadian voters, given a sober state of mind, would ever vote for Trudeau in significant enough numbers to be a real threat.
Rule #1 of any battle strategy, never underestimate your enemy.
Canadians have never liked dirty politics. It’s just not our style. The entire “He’s just not ready” campaign planner should be dispatched to the Yukon, post haste.
It never did play well and never would. For those who had fringe interest in issues and the election as a whole, Trudeau’s flare and style (sound familiar to anyone over 50?) was undeniable. To anyone who might consider themselves knowledgeable in the political realm – what the issues are and how things get done – they would know that party leaders are not much more than sales people.
The party has a battery of “experts” in all areas – economics, foreign affairs, PR – who determine policy and ultimate direction. Would Trudeau have had input on policy and direction, absolutely, but he did not get to be party leader without and getting a team to achieve a common goal while also keeping their collective eye on the ball is the mark of a true leader. We will see if that happens in this round of Trudeau-mania.
So targeting Justin as opposed to sticking to policy topics was wrong.
Strike Three. See ya.
And make no mistake, this is Trudeau-mania Part Deux. After I got home from Dean Allison’s reception about midnight on Monday, I watched CBC until they gave up around 1 or 1:30.
One pundit said this round of Trudeau-mania significantly surpasses the original since Justin took a party nearly obliterated from existence to one of the most dominant wins since his father Pierre swept to power in 1968.
Tories will be shaking their collective heads for a while, worried about the projected deficit spending plan the Liberals sold in the election run, among other things. Love him or hate him, just like the old man, things are going to be interesting around here.
Locally, little changed. Allison won handily with an overall voter share within a couple of points of his average in previous runs. Liberal Phil Rose had a good showing and his numbers reflected results across the country as Liberal gains were drawn almost solely from the NDP.
It is odd, though, that the same people who sat back in awe that Premier Kathleen Wynne was re-elected after all the provincial Liberal bungling are surprised at the feds’ strong showing. That should have been a huge red flag.