Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday June 21, 2023
Right-Wing Purgatory: The Delusional Quest for Comebacks by Conservative Leaders
In a bizarre right-wing purgatory, Boris Johnson, Donald Trump, Pierre Poilievre, and Maxime Bernier find themselves entangled in their own web of delusions, desperately seeking earthly comebacks to lead their respective governments. However, their chances are slim, and their attempts at redemption border on the comical and ultimately futile.
In Canada, the landscape is rife with conservative leaders vying for right-wing supremacy. Pierre Poilievre and Maxime Bernier, leaders of the Conservative Party of Canada and the People’s Party of Canada, respectively, showcase the internal divisions within conservative politics. The recent Portage-Lisgar by-election exposed their opposing stances, with Conservatives resorting to exploiting anti-LGBTQ+ sentiments to undermine Bernier’s credibility. Yet, Bernier managed to retain significant support, revealing the endurance of his party’s platform, even among those holding anti-Pride views. It’s a convoluted mess of contradictions and reveals the challenges these leaders face in navigating sensitive topics to appeal to a broad voter base.
Meanwhile, in the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson’s transformation into a Trump-like figure is evident. From his resignation letter styled after Trump’s brashness to the inadequate response by the Conservative Party to his Party-gate actions, Johnson’s resemblance to Trump is hard to ignore. While British institutions successfully removed Johnson from office and parliament, the condemnations from the Tory party have been weak, reminiscent of the mistakes made by Republicans in handling Trump. The Tories risk storing up problems for the future if they fail to address Johnson’s actions and reject his lies, as the Republicans did with Trump.
As for Donald Trump himself, he faced arraignment in Miami on charges related to the intentional retention of classified documents and obstruction of justice. Remarkably, this marked the second indictment against Trump within three months, adding to his long chain of corruption. Despite his legal troubles, Trump remains a leading contender for the Republican nomination, and his team seems undeterred by the chaos surrounding him. Other Republican candidates have been hesitant to confront him directly, hoping that the weight of the charges will prove insurmountable. The lack of forceful opposition from candidates and GOP leaders indicates that voters are unlikely to change their stance, further entrenching the perception divide between Republicans and the rest of the country.
The future remains uncertain for these conservative leaders as they battle their way back to power. Their shamelessness and unwavering arrogance set them apart from other politicians, but it is precisely these qualities that render their comebacks comical and futile. The prolonged stay in right-wing purgatory serves as a stark reminder that political redemption is not guaranteed, even for those who once held significant influence.
The delusional quest for comebacks by Boris Johnson, Donald Trump, Pierre Poilievre, and Maxime Bernier paints a vivid picture of right-wing purgatory. As they grapple with internal divisions, exploit anti-LGBTQ+ sentiments, and face legal troubles, these conservative leaders find themselves trapped in a realm of their own making. Their chances of reclaiming power dwindle as their antics and refusal to be held accountable alienate their own party members and the broader public. The lesson is clear: political redemption requires humility, integrity, and a genuine commitment to serving the people, qualities that these leaders sorely lack. (AI) | Editorial Cartoon also printed in the Toronto Star.