“Ye know not the day nor the hour.”
The quote is from the Bible and refers, not to the nights of political long knives but rather, the Second Coming. All that as introduction to the idea that for three of the national leaders of Canada’s political parties the future is cloudy and none of the three leaders may lead their party into in the next general election.
Scheer’s tough road
For Conservative leader Andrew Scheer a particularly tough road lies ahead. He had been dealt a great hand headed into the federal election, but he misplayed it. The country to me seemed poised for change from Trudeau and the Liberals, but Andrew Scheer staked out ground for himself that made him difficult to vote for.
I told you earlier that I couldn’t vote for any political party where the leader refused to participate in gay pride parades. Exclusion is the last thing in the world I want in a national leader. Mr. Scheer also appeared to be mean of spirit in the campaign and after.
It showed in the leaders debates and perhaps more importantly after the election when he announced that when Justin Trudeau stumbled, he was ready to take over and be Prime Minister. That doesn’t play well with the public. I suspect in the back rooms of the Conservative Party now knives are being sharpened and ambitions rising.
While it is early, the names of Peter MacKay, Jason Kenney and Lisa Raitt among others are being tossed around.
For the New Democrats; you probably know that Jagmeet Singh is a nice, honest guy. That and a buck and a half in politics will get you a nice cup of coffee. Mr. Singh campaigned honourably and hard and was on side with the environment as an issue, but his reward was to watch his party fall into fourth place.
A revitalized bloc
We could talk about the reasons for hours but its strength in Quebec was sucked away by a revitalized Bloc leader Yves-Francois Blanchet. It will take a while because the NDP has no money but give it eighteen months or so and the NDP will decide whether electoral success in the future lies with Jagmeet Singh jumping up and down. As I mentioned last week, the NDP win in St. Johns was Jack Harris’ victory. Harris could have won for Lord Sutch’s Screaming Loony Party (anyone remember them?)
The third leader who might be hearing footsteps in the night is Elizabeth May of the Green Party. The environment is an issue whose time has come around the world yet despite talk of a Green wave and other such nonsense, nothing happened.
The Greens did great in the pre-election polls, but nothing happened. They talked of a breakthrough with the twelve seats necessary to become a recognized party but … nothing happened.
May has been leading the Greens for a decade and a half with no real success and when the next election comes around, she will be nearly 70.
It’s not fair but that makes leading a party to victory difficult. There isn’t much in politics that is fair.
NTV’s Jim Furlong can be reached by emailing: [email protected]