Saturday, April 9, 2016
Mulcair and the NDP head into couples therapy at convention
Whatever the outcome of this weekend’s vote on Tom Mulcair’s leadership, it’s already apparent that the NDP is a party deeply divided — not just over whether he deserves to stay in the job, but over where the party needs to go.
One can’t be separated from the other.
Mulcair, as we already know, led the New Democrats to a devastating result in the 2015 election. The party lost votes, over half its seats and its status as the Official Opposition in the House of Commons.
Worse still, the Liberals vaulted over the NDP in large part because Justin Trudeau out-performed Mulcair during the campaign.
But there’s a growing sense inside the party that the Liberals really usurped the NDP as the party of choice among progressive voters, with the most obvious example being Trudeau’s willingness to run deficits to invest in infrastructure, indigenous communities and health care.
Heading into the weekend, the list of those who want a change at the top includes the party’s youth wing, its socialist caucus and the president of the Canadian Labour Congress.
In a letter released this week, the youth wing urged NDP members to support “a new direction and new style of leadership.”
It complains that young New Democrats were forced in the last campaign to argue against legalization of marijuana, against Mulcair’s participation in a debate on women’s issues and, well, on a host of other issues that ran counter to what young people believe. (Continued: CBC news)