Mini-Orange Crush In Montreal For 2019?

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Mighty Middle
Mini-Orange Crush In Montreal For 2019?

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Mighty Middle

Valerie Plante has defeated Denis Coderre and has become the first female mayor in Montreal.

Her party Projet Montréal has links to Québec Solidaire provincially and to the NDP federally. She is on the board of the Broadbent Institute.

Does this bode well for Jagmeet Singh and the NDP to pick up Montreal seats in 2019?

pietro_bcc

I don't think it does. Part of Plante's win was a vote against Coderre who people dislike, that dynamic doesn't exist federally because Trudeau isn't a bloviating jerk like Coderre.

progressive17 progressive17's picture

My vote for Plante was largely based on a desire to beat Coderre. I did however compare their platforms, and on balance Plante had a better one than Coderre. Plante was not proposing a baseball stadium with an initial $500 million (and probably bottomless) pricetag. Do you think a third baseball stadium will be lucky? Plante's transit plan has some redundancies and does not address the areas where many of our working class work. However she gets credit for proposing something, rather than nothing. Moving Formula E to where the Grand Prix is held is also where Plante was light years ahead of Coderre. 

Pondering

The difference between Coderre and Plante is that Plante focused on the people who live in Montreal and their day to day needs. Coderre focused on Montreal as a world class city that needs to attract international investment to continue growing and prospering.

I hope we are living through a dramatic change. A few years back someone young said to me that all politics is local and that municipal politics is the best way to have an impact. I acknowledged the importance of municipal politics but at the same time I thought of it as minor in the grand scheme of things. If we really wanted change it had to happen higher up. That is true, but perhaps the way to have change higher up is to start with municipal politics. Cities are more and more important with the grand majority of citizens living in them.

People did not vote for Plante because she is on the left. They voted for Plante because they saw that Coderre is an old-school politician that doesn't think people should be consulted on important decisions. He is of the school that the people elect experts to run cities, provinces and countries. As experts they see the big picture so have the qualifications to make decisions individual citizens might not be happy with but is for their own good. From that perspective the only thing citizens should be voting on is the overall job that the politician has done. His focus was on having cleaned up corruption (not that I saw any change) and done a good job on overall management. All the major papers endorsed him based on his management expertise, his connections, the big picture. So he's a little autocratic, the important thing is he's a good manager able to get things from the provincial government and is putting Montreal on the map. From that perspective granite tree stumps and the e-race are unimportant. With the establishment everything is about the big picture, what allows business to thrive, what attracts investment, with the assumption that the more money is in the city the better people's lives become. The city needs money to provide services. You keep taxes down by increasing the tax base through expansion. The bigger the better. This is basically the trickle down theory in city development and is established wisdom. The NIMBY crowd are shamed as being selfish.

Plante is the absolute opposite. Her focus is on what citizens who live in Montreal want. She isn't anti-business. Communities need businesses and jobs. She is willing to be democratic because she trusts the residents of Montreal to make good decisions. She doesn't see herself as "the expert in running things". Peter Trent was on TV last night giving dire warnings about Plante not having enough experts around her like Coderre had so she is going to have a hard time. I think the establishment is hoping she will fail. The whole "you need an expert" thing is falling apart. Plante is doing the unthinkable, she is offering people what they want. That is why people voted for her not because she is on the "left". These choices are also good economically and will be proven to be so. The metro system is way under-developed to the point where it is hindering economic development as well as livability. We have world class universities and an educated population. Add a strong public transportation system and cleaner air we will attract investment. I don't know how these things are judged. Hasn't the metro system paid for itself since it was opened? Is it not a public necessity like roads without which the city comes to a halt? Does local pollution not carry with it an economic cost in wear and tear on both infrastructure and human health?

The Coderre cohorts tried to scare people off Plante by associating her with Quebec Solidaire and the NDP, as though those are bad things. I think it helped Plante because people are so turned off by that kind of politics. Plante won because she is offering people what they want and they are not afraid of her lack of expertise or lack of political connections.

Jagmeet Singh's fate rests on what he offers voters and if they believe he can deliver.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Why do you assume that the ideas of the left AREN'T about "offering people what they want"?  And why is it so important to you to deny that "the left" deserves any credit for Plante's victory?   Most of the people working in her campaign were on the left, and the left, from what I've wanted, has generally worked with the idea of the greater good in mind.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

It does potentially augur well for QS(it would augur well for an NPD-Q if that party had any support) in the next National Assembly elections.  With Duceppe having endorsed the defeated incumbent, it's a big setback for the Bloc and possibly harms the PQ by extension.  

Debater

At the moment the NDP is running in 3rd or 4th place in Quebec, depending on the poll.  So at this point in time, the NDP is at risk of losing seats in Quebec, not gaining them.

The NDP also just finished in 4th in Lac Saint Jean.

And in the Saint Laurent by-election earlier this year, the NDP finished 3rd, behind the Conservatives.

So the NDP might be at risk of losing Outremont, if Tom Mulcair steps down next month, as rumoured.  Some people are wondering if Mulcair will delay his retirement because of the poor NDP poll numbers.

Anything can change, but right now the Liberals have about a 20-point lead in Quebec according to the latest Leger poll.

Singh will need to spend more time building up the NDP in Quebec.

Mighty Middle

Denis Lemieux, Liberal MP for Chicoutimi–Le Fjord has announced he'll be stepping down.

He only beat NDP Dany Morin by 2% (600 votes) so maybe this could be a potential NDP pick-up.

Debater

Why is Denis Lemieux stepping down?

And yes, there was a close race between the Liberals & NDP in that riding in 2015.  Although since that time, the NDP numbers have fallen, as we saw in Lac Saint Jean.  So it might be more secure for the Liberals now.

Pondering

Ken Burch wrote:

Why do you assume that the ideas of the left AREN'T about "offering people what they want"?  And why is it so important to you to deny that "the left" deserves any credit for Plante's victory?   Most of the people working in her campaign were on the left, and the left, from what I've wanted, has generally worked with the idea of the greater good in mind.

In terms of workers of course "the left" deserves credit for all their hard work. Having said that it doesn't mean that the people who voted for Plante now identify as "leftist" so will vote for "leftist" parties like QS or NDP provincially and NDP federally.

Montreal voted for Valerie Plante and Projet Montreal not "a leftist party".  Montrealers are not more left than they were when they elected Coderre.

lagatta4

And even though many of us on the left (at least the radical left) want a different economic system, why on earth would be want businesses to fail and working people be out of a job, as at Target and Sears? A lot of the "anti-business" claims are nothing but blackmail, claiming that environmental and social measures will stifle business.

Pondering

lagatta4 wrote:
And even though many of us on the left (at least the radical left) want a different economic system, why on earth would be want businesses to fail and working people be out of a job, as at Target and Sears? A lot of the "anti-business" claims are nothing but blackmail, claiming that environmental and social measures will stifle business.

I agree and Montrealers rejected the fear-mongering. But, those very same people might be anti-abortionists or racist or have other beliefs counter to left-wing thought. The title of this thread is "Mini-Orange Crush in Montreal for 2019". It's a very long shot to suggest that Plante's win says anything about how Montrealers will vote federally in 2019 or even to claim that Montrealers have shifted from right to left in their general political beliefs.

I think left right and centre are useful concepts for political discussion and for organization but that there is danger in thinking the general public can be so neatly categorized.

"The left" whatever that really is, cannot afford to be naive or idealistic. Having truth and justice on your side is a help but it still takes sophistication and focus to sell it.

Sean in Ottawa

I think this vote is more evidence of what we already know. Montreal is fertile ground for progressive ideas.

To say that this is a direct benefit to the NDP, in the form of a potential Orange Crush, is to miss the challenge for the NDP in the province.

The Party is not seen as the primary vehicle for progressive ideas in Quebec right now. For a short time it had success because it was. It will have to find a way to do that again and make that connection before dreams of a repeat of 2011 may be possible.

I really think that a relationship between the NDP and the population is needed to replace this current situation where a small number of people decide what to project. Without this there will be no Orange Crush anywhere. With it, anything is possible. Unfortunately there is the minefield of division in and out of Quebec. It is difficult to find points of view that can attract without repelling. A challenge for any political party is that there is little consensus among voters and this has not been closed.

 

Pondering

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
 I really think that a relationship between the NDP and the population is needed to replace this current situation where a small number of people decide what to project.

Absolutely. That's what Plante did. She listened. Then she focused on what the people of Montreal want. Jagmeet is absolutely doing the right thing by traveling the country meeting people and hearing about their priorities. I think it's important for the NDP to stick to its principals but that can be done while still focusing on what the people want.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
It is difficult to find points of view that can attract without repelling. A challenge for any political party is that there is little consensus among voters and this has not been closed. 

I think to win power you have to play down ideology and find issues voters do have consensus on or would if they knew how the issue was going to impact them. During Valerie's acceptance speech in reference to anglophones and allophones she said we have more in common than people would like us to believe. That is very true. We play into the hands of our enemies when we allow the focus to be on what divides us.

Win first on what unites us. Once elected then try to lead on the issues that don't have consensus.

...

 

 

Mighty Middle

There have been a couple of right-wing columnists who are celebrating this victory. Not because they are pro-Plante. But they feel this is evidence to them that Trudeau can & will be taken out after one term.

Debater

Denis Coderre’s stunning defeat a message to Montreal’s elites

Chantal Hébert

https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/11/06/denis-coderres-stunning-d...

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

(note: this was meant to be a response to post #13)

The 2015 NDP campaign was an ideology-free zone, fixated with looking as "practical" as possible.  So I'm not sure who you're critiquing when you imply that the NDP is too "ideological".

 

bekayne

Mighty Middle wrote:

There have been a couple of right-wing columnists who are celebrating this victory. Not because they are pro-Plante. But they feel this is evidence to them that Trudeau can & will be taken out after one term.

They're dumb enough to think this was a pro-pipeline vote.

Pondering

Ken Burch wrote:

The 2015 NDP campaign was an ideology-free zone, fixated with looking as "practical" as possible.  So I'm not suer who you're critiquing when you imply that the NDP is too "ideological".

I didn't say the NDP is too ideological.  The NDP had a whole set of other problems in 2015. Being ideological was certainly not one of them. I was responding to Sean's comment about the difficulty in achieving consensus in general and referring to Plante's approach which was non-ideological.

I am talking generally about lessons learned from Plante's campaign because this thread is about the relationship between Plante's win and the future of the NDP in 2019. There are certainly members of the NDP would would like the party to be more ideological. I don't think Plante's win was about being on the left. Right-wingers don't like traffic congestion either and they do appreciate transparency.

Now that you mention it you could say that the NDP was ideological in 2015. They were decidedly centrist. Their whole focus was on being just left enough to keep their core voters while reassuring voters they wouldn't do anything too crazy.

Populism is always so disparaged but Valerie Plante won based on it and it stuns me that the right has been able to snap up people that should logically support the left because it would make their lives so much better.

As I've been saying. I have high hopes for Jagmeet Singh. I think he is doing the right thing by traveling the country and building up the NDP while allowing Canadians a chance to get to know him and for him to get a first hand feel for what people are most concerned about and how they respond to his ideas.

Pondering

Debater wrote:

Denis Coderre’s stunning defeat a message to Montreal’s elites

Chantal Hébert

https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/11/06/denis-coderres-stunning-d...

This is not as unlikely an alliance as it might seem. Plante’s election is not good news for the main sovereigntist parties or for that matter for the Liberals — federal and provincial — who are used to having one of their own running the show at Montreal City Hall.

The grassroots organization that defeated Coderre and his team on Sunday could help Québec Solidaire wipe the PQ and its leader Jean-François Lisée off the map of Montreal in next fall’s provincial election. It could also make it a bit easier for Jagmeet Singh’s New Democrats to keep their footing in Quebec’s biggest city.

That's a lot of "coulds".  Her theory seems to be that voters rejected all the elite endorsements of Coderre so it's kind of a revolt against the establishment. QS and the NDP are the anti-establishment parties so it's good news for them. I think that's a way too inflated and simplistic analysis of what happened. The papers all endorsed Harper against Trudeau too. It did not signal a revolt of the masses when Trudeau won.

cco

Pondering wrote:

I don't think Plante's win was about being on the left. Right-wingers don't like traffic congestion either and they do appreciate transparency.

Isn't it funny how whenever right-wingers win, it's a sign that the voting public agrees with right-wing ideals and the left-wing parties need to move right, but when left-wingers win, it's an accident, not a sign of anything ideological, and nobody suggests the right-wing parties move left?

Pondering

cco wrote:
Pondering wrote:

I don't think Plante's win was about being on the left. Right-wingers don't like traffic congestion either and they do appreciate transparency.

Isn't it funny how whenever right-wingers win, it's a sign that the voting public agrees with right-wing ideals and the left-wing parties need to move right, but when left-wingers win, it's an accident, not a sign of anything ideological, and nobody suggests the right-wing parties move left?

I've never believed that at all. I regularly say that the whole right/left thing doesn't apply to voters. Someone can be anti-abortionist, racist and pro-LBGTQ and be an environmentalist all at the same time. Is such a person on the left or the right? Harper's win didn't indicate that people were moving to the right. The Conservatives, Liberals and NDP all work to convince Canadians that they are in the centre because voters don't identify with the right/left thing.

Plante's win didn't indicate that people are moving to the left. Reading it as such is a misreading of the public. Plante won because Coderre was arrogant and ran a bad campaign while she was humble and ran a great boots on the ground campaign.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..i suspect that the plante election was seen by many folk, especially activists, as a possible vehicle to a better place. a place where there is a more participitory enviroment. it's up to those folk to support, shape and defend what is about to come. i don't believe that this election is about the ndp at all and that some want to piggyback on the plante victory. and i see the election as being very political.  

Sean in Ottawa

Mighty Middle wrote:

There have been a couple of right-wing columnists who are celebrating this victory. Not because they are pro-Plante. But they feel this is evidence to them that Trudeau can & will be taken out after one term.

Do they live in Quebec or read news from there?

I am sure Trudeau is not happy but this could not be said to be anything about the federal government or Trudeau, I think.

progressive17 progressive17's picture

The right can't use the argument that Plante will be less business-friendly than Coderre was. There are plenty of signs around Montreal on empty stores indicating that Coderre's high municipal business taxes put them out of business. 

And of course there are many places a business can locate which are outside Montreal city limits (St. Laurent, TMR, etc.) and where they can avoid Montreal business taxes.

Sean in Ottawa

I think that the biggest indication you might take out of this result beyond local politics is that After many years of little change Quebec for the last decade has had very fluid politics and I think many people there like it that way. 

I don't think that any time soon any party will be able to take Quebec for granted. This is a good thing for Quebec. Elections will be won and lost there. For many years few seats were considered in play there.

For any opposition party, including the NDP, fluidity is good news and likewise bad news for any government.

When the fluidity raises a party or candidate of the left this is better news for a left party. However drawing a tighter connection would be a challenge.

All this said it is my opinion that the NDP may fair better in Quebec in the next election than many think -- or much worse. What I think is off the table is anything like the last result. It will be a case of restored support and quite a few gains or a much more serious loss than 2015.

 

 

progressive17 progressive17's picture

Unfortunately for Party enthusiasts of all stripes, I think that no conclusion can be drawn whatsoever as to the result on provincial and federal politics from Plante's win.

It can however be said that the ground game of the "progressive" or "left" forces in Montreal has been operating very well. Their support is not to be taken for granted. It could very well fracture. (Coderre won against such a fractured opposition) Provincial and federal politicians from the "right" parties may say the wrong things or advocate the wrong policies. 

If some politician from the traditional "left" parties (or otherwise) decides to dictate that he or she is a "leader of the people", he or she will probably be punished by the Montreal electorate.

Pondering

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

For any opposition party, including the NDP, fluidity is good news and likewise bad news for any government.

When the fluidity raises a party or candidate of the left this is better news for a left party. However drawing a tighter connection would be a challenge.

All this said it is my opinion that the NDP may fair better in Quebec in the next election than many think -- or much worse. What I think is off the table is anything like the last result. It will be a case of restored support and quite a few gains or a much more serious loss than 2015.

Agreed. I think it could have a positive impact but if it does it will be a result of progressive ideas working. The next four years are going to be tough for Plante. I honestly don't know how much support she can count on in the municipal machine or if she will face opposition. Will the provincial and federal governments try to undermine her or work with her? Apparently I am supposed to believe the corruption has been all cleared up. I'm not convinced.

If she is successful it might get people to take a more sympathetic approach to evaluating parties considered on the left.

JKR

Pondering wrote:

The Conservatives, Liberals and NDP all work to convince Canadians that they are in the centre because voters don't identify with the right/left thing.

 

Or maybe the political parties tailor their message to centrist voters because centrist voters make up the vast majority of swing voters? 

One interesting aspect of the Montreal election is that it turned out to be a classic two-party FPTP election. It seems that to beat Coderre under FPTP, the left intelligently united behind one candidate and didn't split the vote.