ONE DAY that Changed Canada for YEARS

The bottom line result of Monday’s federal election: Justin Trudeau will be Prime Minister again … possibly for years!

Yes, it will be a minority Liberal government … a major step down from Trudeau’s majority before the writ was dropped … but don’t even think, worry or dream that Canadians will be heading back to the polls anytime soon.

The NDP is broke; the Bloc Quebecois is delighted; the Greens are celebrating; and the Conservatives fell far shorter than expected.

They may all bluster and bash and berate … but NONE of them will be in any position for quite some time to defeat the Liberals … and force another election.

However Canada tomorrow will be much different than it was yesterday.

The NDP held 39 seats at dissolution: however, even with fewer than that in the next Parliament, it will certainly wield considerable more influence … especially on climate change, taxation policies and social programs legislation … given the minority government situation.

But not enough to stop the Trans-Mountain pipeline.

No doubt in my mind, the Tories will back the Liberals in ANY consequential vote that would threaten the future of that project.

And speaking of the Tories, although Andrew Scheer and the Conservatives lost the election … they not only picked up seats … they also won more of the popular vote than the Liberals.

But they have a big problem.

Just think about all the dirt Sheer/Tories were able to throw at Trudeau and see stick: SNC Lavalin interference; Jody Wilson-Raybould’s mistreatment; the blackface fiasco; fears over huge carbon taxes; his embarrassing India trip; weak response to China’s bullying; and, being found guilty of two ethics violations.

And yet, although Canadians chastised Justin Trudeau … enough voters still chose to return him/Liberals to power.

What failed the Tories?

I believe, if there’s a lesson in the election results for the Official Opposition party … it’s that MOST Canadians (if you add up the Liberal, NDP, Green or even Bloc popular vote) SUPPORT the fight against climate change, ACCEPT the carbon tax, FAVOUR women’s choice on abortion, UPHOLD respecting LGBTQ rights, and AGREE with foreign aid, welcoming refugees and immigration.

Canada has changed … and, if they want to win, the Tories must as well.

Harv Oberfeld

(Note to readers: Comments are welcome; discussions and debates are encouraged … but will be edited if off topic and for excessive length. And remember, you can get First Alerts to all new postings on this BC-based Blog by following @harveyoberfeld on Twitter.

Posted in British Columbia, Media, National | 44 Comments

Jody Wilson-Raybould Gets MY Vote

In the end, for me, it comes down to ethics, integrity and principles.

As I wrote before on this Blog, I happen to live/vote in Vancouver Granville … the riding represented by former Liberal Justice Minister and Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould.

I voted for her when she ran as a Liberal in the last election … not that I knew and supported her personally, but I had tired of Conservative PM Stephen Harper’s dictatorial style, disdain for holding press conferences, silencing of public officials and, even during the election campaign, his own refusal to take or answer more than minimal questions.

It was time for a change.

Some believe it’s that time again; others disagree; some support other parties … all good reasons to vote for whoever YOU decide is most worthy.

And I have to say … as an independent voter … I found policies/messages I could support and also policies/messages I would oppose offered up by ALL the parties … making my choice this time much more difficult.

But in Vancouver-Granville, there has also been a very different calculation to consider.

Jody Wilson-Raybould is running as an Independent … after being trashed by Justin Trudeau and the Liberals for refusing to interfere in the Court case facing the huge corporation, Quebec-based SNC Lavalin.

As I wrote in August, I had concerns, though, about voting for an Independent in a close election and also wondered, based on Wilson-Raybould’s own repeated and seemingly constant emphasis of her First Nations background/interests, whether she would be a one-issue MP … neglecting the rest of us in her riding.

You can read that piece here: http://harveyoberfeld.ca/blog/jody-wilson-raybould-is-a-hero-but-i-still-may-not-vote-for-her/

Perhaps she or her strategists read that piece, because since then, Wilson-Raybould … and her campaign … have repeatedly emphasized other issues of concern in Vancouver-Granville as well: cost of living; the economy; fairer taxes; affordable housing; climate change; health care and support for a pharmacare program.

And then, there’s the “hero” factor.

Because Jody Wilson-Raybould had done something I witnessed VERY RARELY in my 38 years of reporting and covering politics at the municipal, regional, provincial and federal levels: she stood up on principle against power and pressure … even at the cost of her own appointed position.

No one should under-estimate how remarkable that is for someone who pursues a calling and a career in politics … especially at a senior federal Cabinet post … forsaking all the perks and privileges that go with that.

Standing up ON PRINCIPLE against a Prime Minister!

It goes much beyond sacrificing just the extra pay, the larger offices … both on Parliament Hill and at departmental HQ … the prestige, the car/driver, deferential treatment by many of those around her.

Wilson-Raybould also gave up her role participating at one of the highest appointed positions in Canadian politics.

For principles!

People who have read my writings on this Blog know how high a price I paid in my own career … standing up for others, for fairness, for workers’ rights and dignity … against bullies and injustices.

Never regretted doing that for a minute! Because, in the end, principles are MUCH more important than perks.

So Wilson-Raybould has my vote.

Harv Oberfeld

(Reminder: you can get FREE First Alerts of all new postings on this BC-based Blog by following @harveyoberfeld on Twitter. No spam … just First Alerts of new topics up for discussion.)

Posted in British Columbia, Media, National | 58 Comments