The election campaign's winners and losers
So, as you stand there, clutching a scrappy little tabloid in your hands, waiting, grumbling, let’s consider who won and lost. And what that means for their fate.
Justin Trudeau: Already, we know that the Liberal leader has lost. He was lusting after a Parliamentary majority, and he’s not getting one. Majority-envy — due to some weird Oedipal thing about his father, methinks — is the sole and only reason he called this unnecessary, unwanted, unsafe election. So, Trudeau has lost, even if he clings to power by his manicured fingertips.
Will his party push him out? Not a chance. His party isn’t a party — it’s a cult. Cults don’t have succession plans. Trudeau isn’t going until Trudeau wants to go. And, honestly: what would he do when he quits? A spot at WE is no longer open. Ditto the United Nations, which has little regard for him. So, he loses, but he stays. Sorry.
Erin O’Toole: Me and 35 million of my closest friends were wrong about the Conservative leader. We thought — like Trudeau thought — he’d get creamed. In comparative Tory terms, O’Toole is practically a Bolshevik; he ran a hope campaign while Trudeau trafficked in fear. As such, he was not easily depicted as a mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, red-necked crypto-Nazi by the Grit war room. He’ll likely improve on what Blandy Andy Scheer got in 2019.
Is he a goner? Not if his party is intelligent, which is always an open question with the modern-era CPC. O’Toole seems to be decent, likeable fellow. Usually, that would mean he’s toast. This time, I think he will live to fight another day.
Jagmeet Singh: At the start of his leadership tenure, the NDP leader made an omnishambles of caucus relations, fundraising, and seat-winning. He was a disaster, one unlikely to survive. Now look at him! Our Jagmeet, all grown up! He charms voters! He dominates in debate! He speaks in clips! He even skateboards on Halifax airport tarmacs — I shredded my meniscus doing late-in-life skateboarding, Jag, so be careful — making it all look easy!
Singh’s socialist hordes have hit a 20% ceiling in the polls, true, but he’s still likely to pick up some seats — mostly from Trudeau’s Liberals. That stands his leadership in good stead for a while. Singh stays.
Annamie Paul: She’s smart, she’s courageous, she’s Jewish, she’s a person of colour — all of which works against her in the rat-infested insane asylum that calls itself the Green Party. Highly unlikely to win her Toronto seat, and highly unlikely to survive the regicide that awaits her. A loss to Canada.
Some Guy in Purple: He wasn’t allowed into the debates, so he isn’t allowed into my column. He will, however, blame all of his losses on Yours Truly. LOL, as the kids say.
So. There you go, unhappy voter, as you stand there in a long, long (long) line.
Not many clear winners, in this Seinfeldian election about nothing — except you. You, and yours, make democracy work by participating in it.
So, thank you. You’re a winner.
— Kinsella was special assistant to Jean Chretien.