Justin Trudeau, Mr Trudeau, Prime Minister discussed on The Economist: The Intelligence
But I Next week Canada's parliament will reconvene for its first session. Since October's election Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Liberal Party is still dylan control but in a minority government with smaller parties back in two thousand fifteen after winning a thumping parliamentary majority. Mr Trudeau declared that the new liberal era had begun Etienne spoken you want a government with a vision and in the gender for this country. That is it's positive and then vicious and hopeful for years later he sounded much the same and they voted in favor of a progressive agenda. And I'm strong action on climate change but October's election. His party won a million fewer votes and won no seats in the the western provinces of Alberta and Scotch on the victory speeches may have sounded similar but in his second term. It seems Mr Trudeau May Not Justin Trudeau had struggled to get reelected in part because He had attempted to try to change the world in fact at one point in his twitter bio read changing the world. A little bit every day. John I've isn't has reported on Mr does fortunes for the economist and I think that the electric really wanted them. Rather than to change changed the world. They wanted to an agenda. It was a little bit less planetary in scope. It was made worse by the fact that that his own blunders seemed to make him look like a hypocrite particularly Louis repeatedly winning black face when he was younger. This during the election is a bit of a bombshell. This is something that I deeply deeply. Eh regret darkening. Your face Regardless of the context or the circumstances is always unacceptable all because of the racist history of black face and then mainly the scandal which was reverberating in early. Twenty nine thousand nine hundred eighty demoted. It is justice minister after she refused to help a Quebec based construction company. Settle a criminal case and avoid prosecution over allegations of bribery and Libya in this has been a tough few weeks Canadians. Expect deserve to have faith in their institutions and the people who act within them well. First of all the justice does minister was a woman secondly she was an indigenous woman. And these issues that he'd been pontificating on he was particularly tarnished in the eyes of progressive voters. Well that's that's not to say though that he hadn't Taken on some big causes at home no I think that the liberal government was very proud of its record in the first four years. There were some pretty transformative changes the legalization of pot being one of them a very generous Gerald benefit allowance that lifted many people out of poverty. Eighty today nine out of ten families have more money in their pockets for things like new skates or hockey camp. The now helps more than six million children children and their families and it's helped lift hundreds of thousands of kids out of poverty since its inception in twenty sixteen. They managed to enhance the kind of pension implant They established a a national price on carbon and probably most crucially for the Canadian economy. The renegotiated a new free trade agreement with the trump administration that while it made some concessions that did not give away the farm. It was a pretty good result for Canada. Well what what's striking about. The the the election result though is how much the west of the country didn't seem to support him yes so it was locked out of the provinces of Alberta and to schedule No. MP's no representation. and Ah a rising feeling that some of these attempts to change the world particularly on climate change were being done at the expense of the resort producing regions of the country. So there's there's clearly in the second minded things that Trudeau needs to address. And he has started trying to address them. Address them in a in a change of tone or more concretely in policy. Well he he came back from Christmas vacation in Costa Rica. He had adopted a salt and pepper stubble which was designed. I think to make him look a little bit more. Seasoned I think that was symbolic and deliberately symbolic because I think this is a new low key approach. I think that they felt that while. They made some transformative changes in their last Monday. They didn't really get a lot of credit for that. As we saw in the election result there were far too many times editor was picture championing. Latest 'cause the latest woke because the critics would claim while not really talking about some of the things that he was actually doing. And what do you think of the big issues in his inbox. Now that he has this thin majority majority that the government gave it speech from the throne just before Christmas. The main th- broad themes will continue to be support for the middle class. The short themselves without an broad-based tax cut. That came before Christmas. The other major themes from the term we're going to continue. Reconciliation with indigenous communities continued attempts at ensuring the health and safety of Canadian through things like the introduction of a national drug benefit plan but the middle class has permeated just about everything they've done they've even appointed a minister for the middle class. No the term was ridiculed. And it's really a a junior finance minister role but clearly you. There's a feeling that if they can push the average Canadian increase their earnings lift people below the mode of poverty that this is a winning winning formula and they should be concentrating on this rather than on some of the more identity politics issues which dominated the first term. And so what. What will he be kind of working against? Does he tries to do this. And and keep all of these these various constituencies happy. The obvious one is. This is now a minority parliament. The liberal government needs the support of at least one other of the major parties the MVP the left of center and EP the Bloc Quebecois separatist party. I don't think we can expect an election anytime soon. The MVP urban strapped for cash. They're not likely to want to force an election. The bloc is quite happy as long as it's issues concerning quebecer addressed the other constraints obviously the the problems on the prairies with Scott. Actually no Berta have to be addressed. The one or the other thing that comes to mind is there are fiscal pressures. This is a government that has spent a lot of money in the first four years and his first platform. It said they would be back in balanced by two thousand nineteen in fact. This year's deficit is likely to be somewhere in the region of twenty six billion dollars Canadian as bill more. No the finance minister said when he met with reporters after he gave a fiscal update just before Christmas. He said nobody said it was going to be easy. And it's not so so all of this sort of Taken together how. How do you expect this? The second term to play apple with both with the the the fiscal and political constraints the The prime prime minister nowadays expected to be taken a little more seriously with his pepper beard. How how do you think this will come together all told I think it largely depends on who the conservatives choose news as their next leader Andrew share the former leader has been ousted and they're going to be contested? Too late June remains to be seen whether he wants to go for another election. I think there are a large question marks about that whether he wants if this is the minority that goes for more than two years. He may feel at that point that he's done enough and he's going to exit stays left but let's assume that he stayed around. There are a number of options for the Conservatives. I think it depends which one the membership picks. The Trudeau looks at the next election. It's not clear yet all of the potential candidates. But there is a female Rona Ambrose who was the interim leader of the conservative before chose there permanently. I think Mr Trudeau. It's very hard to run against a woman leader if however the conservative choose a leader who is small c conservative on social issues. WHO's the loss leader? They're not plays into truth. Hans they membership base will want a leader who is perhaps skeptical of same sex marriage who has for life with these credentials. That's why lost the last election partly his views on climate changes. Well I think the Conservative Party has to have a much more enlightened view. You've who is trying to appeal to and if it does pick a leader who can win votes in the largest provinces of Quebec Ontario then Trudeau may be in trouble Nixon. Sean thank you very much for joining.