A brawl for the climate change vote

The Big Story


A year ago when people wondered which fringe party could matter in the twenty nineteen election most analysts pointed to maxim burn, as newly created People's Party of Canada. Would that party grow? Could it eat into the conservative base, when it split the vote on the right a year later that seems a little silly? The People's Party is still at just a couple of points in the polls. But it turns out there is a little party that could decide the election, it was on the other side of the spectrum sitting right where it's been all along waiting for the rest of the country to reach these same conclusion about the key issue. They're most known for that they'd reached years ago, climate change is not now I repeat that not an environmental issue. It's a massive security threat, and it needs to be dealt with by government at all levels, a security threat that requires taking bold action, one of the clear things that we've seen from, from this, despite election. I want to congratulate all the candidates who who ran in. It is a Canadians are really preoccupied about climate change are Canadians really ready to meet the green party, where they've been living all these years sure every poll shows support for the party is rising, but luck rising is relative. When you were as low in the polls as the greens typically are in federal elections. So even if that general support is there will it translate to results. Will it translate to writings, one can it make a difference on election night? And if it does at whose expense, welcome to the fight for the climate vote. I'm Jordan heath Rollings. And this is the big story, Cormac mcsweeney is the parliament hill. Reporter for city news. And for the Rogers radio brands and also for us iconic. Hey, how's it going? It is going really well. I'm hoping that you can kind of parse this brewing fight on the left side of the political spectrum right now for us. It's a remarkable dynamic right now months to go before the election were seeing votes evaporate for both the liberals and the New Democrats, and they're all shifting green, you know, the old saying it ain't easy being green. Well, it's pretty easy right now, because things are looking up for Elizabeth may and her party. We've got the greens polling at probably the best that they've ever pulled that federally some polls have them up at around twelve percent, which is huge. Because back in two thousand fifteen the greens were, I think less than five percent of the vote. So they've more than doubled their voting base in the lead up to the. Twenty nine thousand nine fall election. So they're firing on all cylinders right now. And the liberals and New Democrats are wondering what the heck to do to make sure that they keep those voters on their sides. But also, not only that steel voters from the other progressive parties to try and make sure that they can secure some sort of victory, and try and stop the conservatives who are also firing on all cylinders right now. So it's a it's a heck of a fight on the left as the conservatives continue to gain momentum. And it's going to be interesting to see what happens is there. Anything concrete, you can point to we've talked a couple times on this podcast, most notably. When they had a chance in P of the sort of, general affection. The greens are seeing in the rise in the polls. But is there anything concrete, you can point to that might be driving people moving to consider the greens? Some of this is based on stats and polls. And others is based sort of anecdotally. But I think what we're seeing is a few. Different things here that is just creating this perfect scenario for the green party. One is the fact that climate change and the concerns around climate change on a broader national scale or finally, catching up with what the green party has been preaching for years and years. And that is, we need to take action to protect the environment and protect our earth, and Canadians are now really catching up to the point where this is becoming one of the biggest issues seen nationally among the voting public that action needs to be taken and serious action at that. That's one thing one aspect of it. Is that Canadians are catching up with the concerns for the greens? But the other aspect all of this is that we're seeing kind of a collapse and a failure, if you will from the liberals and NDP to take a look at the new democrat side of things. Jug, meet sing failing to gain traction is since taking over the party leadership. We've seen the end EP. Of fallen support. He's struggled to get the attention that he was hoping to get. There was a lot of excitement around. Jug. Meet sing in the hope that he would be this charismatic dynamic young leader that would really help vault the end EP back to the level that we saw with Jack Layton that has not happened at all. And he's, he's struggled in a number of interviews as well where he's been accused of being too vague on certain issues or possibly flip flopping on others. And so while they knew Democrats are struggling the liberals have had problems of their own Justin Trudeau back in two thousand fifteen was able to unite the progressives behind him. He stole from green supporters and end EP supporters, and some conservatives and, and really built up this, this perfect sort of momentum around him during that long campaign in two thousand fifteen that helped vault him from third him in the liberals from third party status to government, and it never happened before. But since taking office, a lot of the promises and a lot of the things that he was. Elected on have created problems for him, just looking at things like the promise to change the way, we elect, our MP's read. There was a lot of hope that, that, that would actually happen in never ended up happening. The liberals have had other scan whole such as SNC laflin and the, the more recent problems of the Mark Norman case, those are eating away at liberal support as well. And on top of all of that. I mean with environment with the environment being a big issue in the eyes of Canadians, some are pointing out, what people, some people see as a contradiction of the liberal position while they say, we need to take serious action on climate change. We'd need this carbon tax. Here's the government buying the trans mountain pipeline to make sure that the oil from our oil sands, is being sent off to other markets something a lot of people who are very passionate about the environment disagree with. And so you have a lot of troubles for the liberals and the MVP right now. And a lot of progressives who don't know where to turn because they're dissatisfied with what they see from what is traditionally been the two left or left of center parties. And now they're looking to the greens as a possible, viable option. And so you have this perfect scenario, as I said, where climate change is becoming more of an important issue in the eyes of Canadians, the traditional parties that Canadians have known for decades are not satisfying, a lot of these younger voters. And they're deciding you know what? Maybe whether it's a protest vote or legitimately giving the greens shot. They're definitely looking at the greens with a lot of serious consideration. When they look at them, especially for those people for whom climate is a major issue. What do they see exactly what gives the green party? The credibility on climate to. They have a specific plan. They do. And actually, it was just recently released. They entitled it mission possible. And I think the, the whole thing is that the greens for years have been branding themselves as. As the environmental party now that can work against them in certain ways, where they're sort of seen as only a one issue party. And it's, it's a it's an image that they've been trying to shake for some time now under Lisbeth may. But nonetheless, the greens are seen as a very credible party when it comes to the environment, you ask any Canadian like, who do you think is the party that would do the most to try and save the environment? I think the green party would likely be the number one answer. So they did release this ambitious plan for the environment. At a time when a lot of Canadians are paying attention to these issues. They are pitching to go well beyond what the liberal government has said, we'll be its targets in terms of dealing with greenhouse gas emissions. I mean, well, beyond the fact, they want to double the reduction target. So the liberals say they want to try and hit thirty percent to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from two thousand five levels by thirty percent by twenty thirty while the green party says we can do better than that. We'll do sixty percent of reduction from the two thousand and five levels of by twenty thirty. That's a dramatic shift and they're not just looking at, you know, pricing pollution as a way to deal with this. They're talking about some major projects such as retrofitting every building across the nation and eliminating our reliance on foreign oil making sure that from province to province. Renewable energy can be more easily shared something that even the conservatives are kind of pitching with their energy corridor option right now. So the, the greens have released released a very ambitious plan. And I guess now that it's out there. It hasn't had a lot of time to really set in for Canadians, whether they're paying attention to promises like this so far out from the election or not as another thing. But we'll see how they respond with these very ambitious targets that Elizabeth may and her green party have put forward two weeks ago. The greens actually one abaya election which. Which feels like something that doesn't happen. How did that come about? And what happened in auto afterwards? Because what I'm fascinated by, in this story is the number of people who have kind of seen a rise in the polls from the greens, but to your point written them off, as a one issue party, or while they can't climb that high can they and did this send a message are their people in auto Wah, talking about them? Now there are definitely people talking about the greens. And I think this by-election victory although I will say that by-election results are usually not reflective of where things go in general election ratified, it is a way and it's seen by some as a way to send a message to the government of the day. Prime minister Justin Trudeau said the day after the by election that he gets it. There's a message from Canadians they care about climate change, and they want to see action on climate change. And that's what his government is focused on through its carbon pricing system and. So I think there was a message sent to both the liberals and the end EP that they need to need to up their game. When it comes to environmental issues, the end EP as well as changed its tactics since that by-election result. And so, I think a lot of politicians while they were seeing some of this growth in this so-called green wave sweep across the nation and a lot of buzz and a lot of talk about the greens, it wasn't until we saw on federal scale of victory such as having the second elected, and p from the green party arrive at the house of Commons before they started to really, you know, publicly address this, because I'm sure that behind the scenes, both those parties were looking at the greens as, as a potential threat and trying to figure out what to do. But again, this is all come recently for the greens, where they've seen this rise over the last several months as we. Part of it to do with the focus on climate change part of it to do with distaste of the otherwise traditional parties that Canadians have been voting for for a while. But I think there was a message sent and, and people are adapting how do people see Elizabeth may who may be until recently, not many of them ever thought much about there's a bit of a joke around Ottawa that Elizabeth may is everyone's political aunt? You know, she's a likeable person, she has something to say about almost everything, but up until recently, I don't think a lot of people actually were considering her as, as potential prime ministerial material, and I think, more people are sort of giving her a bit of a shot. She's not distasteful in any way, you know, you haven't seen Elizabeth may be the subject of a lot of controversy. She has she's had her own problems within her own party. There has been pushed back, there have been allegations that she's been a bully as a leader. Things like that. But whether Canadians have been paying a lot of attention to that something else, she is seen as somebody who has integrity, who has a passion for what she does. And I would be hard pressed to find another MP in the house of Commons who spends as much time in the house of Commons, debating on almost every different subject, then Elizabeth may, so she's very committed to her work. There is broad support for Elizabeth may. But whether that translates into prime ministerial materials something else Nanos poll that just came out recently actually has her in terms of the preferred prime minister.

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