I've been lurking a long while. I haven't tracked who says what but I have read enough to know how deeply partisan this board is which is why I haven't posted.
The line seems to be that the NDP and Mulcair can do anything they please as long as it isn't as bad as what the Conservatives do or the Liberals did when they were in power. It reminds me so much of the Conservatives. Every time they got accused of something especially early on they brought up the Liberals. When Mulcair was a Liberal, you probably would have been trashing him. Now that he is NDP he can do no wrong.
Even though I always preferred the NDP I voted Liberal federally because I didn't think the NDP could win. When I moved into a Bloc riding I voted Green as a statement vote except when I voted for Dion. Last time around I voted for Layton even though I have never forgiven him for defeating the Liberal budget that would have brought in universal daycare. So, I am not a die-hard Liberal.
I am, however, getting very turned off the NDP because they seem to behave pretty much like the Conservatives only at the other end of the spectrum. Authoritarian leader that can do no wrong, except when he does, but then, his bad behavior is justifed by others being supposedly worse.
The NDP grew because of people like me. Because when Iggy was dropped in by the Liberal elites I was offended and I was no happier with the elites popping Rae into place either. I like him a lot, just didn't like the undemocratic way in which the party was being run. So, I decided to join in the orange wave even though I didn't think Duceppe could be defeated, but he was defeated.
I was ready to give Mulcair a chance especially knowing that he had a tough act to follow in Layton. Now I can't stand him or many of the NDP supporters. I used to think the NDP were special, principled, the real deal. Now I just see them as selfish game-players and Trudeau seems like the sincere one and the only one of the three that is a federalist.
The NDP grew because Liberals got turned off of Iggy and decided to give the NDP a chance. The partisan ugliness and the dishonest cynical attacks on Trudeau are sending us back to the Liberals in droves. Trudeau doesn't have to defeat the NDP, the NDP is defeating themselves just like the Conservatives.
Trudeau will win the next federal election not because he is so great (he isn't) but because the alternatives are so awful. Mulcair/NDP dishonest and lowball attacks on Trudeau are self-defeating because Mulcair is showing that he is just another political player like all the rest. There is no reason to vote for him.