Canada has modernized its election process and now holds elections every four years, one year ahead of the US Government. Here are some talking points for the 19 October 2015 Federal Election.
- The Conservatives have been in power for 10 years. 70%+ of Canadians are looking for a change.
- Prime Minister Harper came from the oil fields of Alberta. With oil now seen as the ‘carbon problem’—not the solution—Canadians want new energy policy (…and a few other new answers too).
- Like US Republicans: Harper’s Conservative politics are seen as right-wing, divisive, benefiting the few big industries and the 1% of high income earners—rather than the majority.
- Low Canadian Dollar: Will a Canadian government be re-elected with the national currency worth $0.75 US dollars and the economy in recession during the election year? Or does the Governor of the Bank of Canada now hold the trump card as did the Monarch in the Parliaments of old?
- Agenda for Growth: Only Trudeau is talking about energizing the municipalities.
- Evidence-based policy: the Conservatives have been scandalizing the Trudeau platform on Marijuana. Justin’s Liberals have been fighting back with the common sense approach.
- The common sense approach to homelessness: It is a Mental Health issue. Look for traction in the inner cities on this point for parties that aspire to reshape governance around this issue.
- The French Question: Harper would fail any French test put in front of him. So would the two other leaders that don’t speak English with an ‘accent’.
- The Other Party: The NDP has not shed its shackles to the Union Movement in Canada. Furthermore, the unions are hurting Canadians in government and in schools.
- The Other Other Party: The Greens are in the tall grass—scoring single digits in the polls—hoping for a minority government that May give them relevance. The reality is that their leader lacks credibility.
- Openness and Transparency: a mud slinging match until measurable and quantifiable reporting comes to governance.
- C51 (insider’s talk): A divisive right-left issue. The Left promises oversight by Parliament of the national security agencies. Personal freedoms of Canadians are at stake. The Right likes to use national security as a divisive issue in the Regan-Bush-Thatcher tradition.
- Prediction: Trudeaumania returns with a slim or small majority.
A final consideration: turnout at the polls is the most important number. Only a large turnout can erode the power of organized constituencies.