Did Olivia Chow run as a "centrist", or as a leftist?

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TiradeFaction
Did Olivia Chow run as a "centrist", or as a leftist?

Sometime before the recent Mayoral election in Toronto, I posted an article by an author claiming Olivia Chow's major issue with her mayoral campaign was she was too "left wing" with her policies, and it turned off the general electorate in Toronto. Some have argued otherwise. A similar argument seemed to brew over the relative position of the ONDP in the last provincial election. As someone who doesn't live in Toronto (or Ontario at all), my ability to judge her campaign is somewhat limited (I also didn't follow it that closely) so I'm asking rabblers in Toronto (or in the GTA I suppose?) for which there's quite a few, did Olivia Chow run a "centrist" campaign or did she run a "leftist" campaign? I think this issue does have important considerations beyond just the recent mayoral election, as more otherwise socially democratic parties/politicians seem to be increasingly viewed to be watering themselves down as "centrists", and it's worth exploring if there's any actual merit that view, even if it just involves one particular candidate and one race.

P.S. The reason I'm sort of making another thread on this was the last one got derailed pretty badly. If it's against rules to make this I apologize in advance.

msdressup

Definitely leftist.

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Centrist.

Rokossovsky

Liberal.

NS NS's picture

As a past campaigner of NDP, I thought she campaigned as leftist. Although, she could've focused more on wages, poverty and public housing as Linda McQuiag did on her campaign but I suspect the reason why she didnt is because they are more of provincial and federal policies.

Rokossovsky

Horwath basically ripped her campaign message from Chow and Horwath got ripped in the media for being Margaret Thatcher and Mitt Romney, combined. Chow, got the kid gloves treatment from the Toronto media.

NS NS's picture

To what extent have we bought into the American the mythology of the "centrist". Recent media coverage of US mid terms repeated Conservatives lies that the Democrats lost because they leaned too left wing or when they win then they must have moved to the centre. Is the same thing being exported here?

onlinediscountanvils

Also-ran.

TiradeFaction

onlinediscountanvils wrote:

Also-ran.

Whoops. Guess it's back to remedial English for me.

NS wrote:

To what extent have we bought into the American the mythology of the "centrist". Recent media coverage of US mid terms repeated Conservatives lies that the Democrats lost because they leaned too left wing or when they win then they must have moved to the centre. Is the same thing being exported here?

Haven't the Liberals been huge proponents on the idea they're "centrist"? And often stated that reason why they should be entitled to govern?

ctrl190

Chow started the campaign as the "progressive bridge builder" who could work with Liberals while still minding the public purse. Following the aftermath of the provincial election and Horwath's criticism from the base there was a noticeable left-ward shift from the Chow campaign, with much of the populist-penny pinching narrative tossed out. This became even more apparent come September when Tory was now leading Chow by over ten points which I think forced Chow to appeal to her base even more, I guess as a way to strengthen her core in the hopes of remaining competitive in a three-way race. In desperation the Chow team changed their slogan, Chow started talking about income inequality and wore her NDP roots on her sleave. Less than two months earlier she would not be seen within five feet of NDP candidates (think back to her decision not to endorse Cressy in the Trinity-Spadina by-election) and now she was openly campainging with Dipper council candidates like Gord Perks, Janet Davis and even Cressy himself. 

So, in a nutshell, she started off in the centre but moved firmly to the left in the dying weeks of the campaign. 

Rokossovsky

Notably, there was little to no criticism of Chow running on a centerist narrative, but Horwath got slammed hard in the Toronto media for copying Chow's sTyleZ. There seemed to be little principle involved, when it appeared that Chow was running away with it, despite her "right-shift".

terrytowel

ctrl190 wrote:

So, in a nutshell, she started off in the centre but moved firmly to the left in the dying weeks of the campaign. 

I couldn't agree more. Especially when she touted the waste in a Scarborough subway, saying she always knew the value of a buck, and saying she served on the budget committee and always blanced the budget.

Unionist

I think she should have left the centre and centred more on the left. Am I right?

 

Rokossovsky

Unionist wrote:

I think she should have left the centre and centred more on the left. Am I right?

I think she should have been roundly attacked by the "progressive left" in Toronto for "campaigning from the right", and losing her "moral compass", for advocating "equalization" (reduce) of Toronto business education taxes, in order to reward "small business job creators".

Strangely, NDP "stalwart", Judy Rebick, known for her steadfast defense of principle was silent on that one.

terrytowel

Where did Olivia Chow go wrong?

Everything from the beginning. Her branding as a fiscally conservative lefty—you can’t brand somebody something they’re not. You have to go with the strengths in politics and mitigate the weaknesses. She kept flip-flopping on the relief line stuff, and that cost her. And at the end, Warren Kinsella’s behaviour, calling John Tory’s transit plan a segregationist track, should have never happened. It cost her the opportunity to get back in the game.

-Nick Kouvalis

Rokossovsky

Nick is a wise man. Too bad he is on the wrong side of reaction.

By the way, do you ever link sources, because its difficult to trust your paraphrasing of what people say. A lot of your summaries seem highly "interprative".

terrytowel

Rokossovsky wrote:

By the way, do you ever link sources, because its difficult to trust your paraphrasing of what people say. A lot of your summaries seem highly "interprative".

Next time just google the name in question

http://www.torontolife.com/informer/people/2014/12/17/qa-nick-kouvalis-k...

Rokossovsky

You mean I have authenticate your contributions?

terrytowel

No because there is nothing to authenticate.

exxanimo

Applying labels like centristor or leftist to a person or campaign is too simplistic and meaningless.  IMHO, many individuals that seek public office try to appeal and play to what they believe is the largest constituency.  Sadly that group is largely poorly informed and under developed. The candidates typically present as weak leaders and we never know what they really beleive or stand for.  We need intelligent, capable, individuals who are serious and not fearful of being honest with the public.  This takes couage.  This type of individual rarely runs for public office.

exxanimo

Applying labels like centristor or leftist to a person or campaign is too simplistic and meaningless.  IMHO, many individuals that seek public office try to appeal and play to what they believe is the largest constituency.  Sadly that group is largely poorly informed and under developed. The candidates typically present as weak leaders and we never know what they really beleive or stand for.  We need intelligent, capable, individuals who are serious and not fearful of being honest with the public.  This takes courage, which is rare among those that choose to run for public office.

NorthReport

Liberals of course don't want to discuss this, but at the beginning the Cons and Libs got together, and cut a private deal to back John Tory.

No matter what she did she didn't have a chance.

Chow was never in the game.

Liberals are a lot more worried about the NDP than they are of the Cons, as Liberal's very survival is at stake.

Rokossovsky

terrytowel wrote:

No because there is nothing to authenticate.

You mean you are to lazy to cite your sources, or you just don't want us to read them to confirm that they are true.

I like you claiming that Christina Blizzard had "changed her article" when it was cleary you had misquoted her. That was a laff.

terrytowel

Rokossovsky wrote:

terrytowel wrote:

No because there is nothing to authenticate.

You mean you are to lazy to cite your sources, or you just don't want us to read them to confirm that they are true.

I like you claiming that Christina Blizzard had "changed her article" when it was cleary you had misquoted her. That was a laff.

I DID NOT Misquote her. I copied and pasted her article. In that case I did provide a link.

But she changed it. It wasn;t even a misquote. She removed all references to her critical of Andrea, and replaced with with total hatchet job on Wynne.

If you notice on the time stamp below

http://www.torontosun.com/2014/12/16/liberals-may-feel-public-wrath-over...

It says

First posted: Tuesday, December 16, 2014 11:46 AM EST | Updated: Tuesday, December 16, 2014 06:10 PM EST

So I copied and pasted the 11:46 AM version (copied and pasted)

Then Blizzard totally rewrote it and reposted it at 6:10 PM.

Why would I make up something, and then provide a link with that. Which would have NOTHING of that text?

 

terrytowel

NorthReport wrote:

Liberals of course don't want to discuss this, but at the beginning the Cons and Libs got together, and cut a private deal to back John Tory.

No matter what she did she didn't have a chance.

Chow was never in the game.

Liberals are a lot more worried about the NDP than they are of the Cons, as Liberal's very survival is at stake.

Not true, Olivia had Liberals, Conservatives and NDPers working on her campaign. She was leading in the polls.

If you are looking for blame, Olivia has to be at the top.She blew it.

She took for granted she would win. She and her team thought this was a coronation, not a competition.

As such that is one of the many, many reasons she lost. She and her team didn't take Tory or Ford seriously.

Which is why way before the start of the campaign her team convinced any progressive candidate not to enter the race. She wanted to be the only progressive candidate in the race.

From day one they were convinced that Tory & Ford would split the vote in the middle and let her rise to victory.

janfromthebruce

Liberals just like to pretend and mouth progressive politics but they prefer to get into bed with Tories. Mike Harris would be proud that Wynne took a page out of his privitization scheme in selling off Ontario Hydro. Of course Harris sold it to his conservative buddies, while Wynne favours her Liberal buddies. That's why corporations love backing Liberals and Conservatives - it's a win win for the priveleged few.

terrytowel

janfromthebruce wrote:

Liberals just like to pretend and mouth progressive politics but they prefer to get into bed with Tories. Mike Harris would be proud that Wynne took a page out of his privitization scheme in selling off Ontario Hydro. Of course Harris sold it to his conservative buddies, while Wynne favours her Liberal buddies. That's why corporations love backing Liberals and Conservatives - it's a win win for the priveleged few.

Couldn't agree more.

As Nick Kouvoulis said about Olivia

"Her branding as a fiscally conservative lefty—you can’t brand somebody something they’re not."

NorthReport

Cut the nonsense tt.

Liberals and Conservatives privately working together did Chow in.

The night that turned the tide for John Tory’s fledgling mayoral campaign

 

A team of high level provincial and federal Liberals and Conservatives, many of whom had worked against each other in campaigns going back decades, began to meet informally in the summer of 2013. Their goal: find a way to replace Rob Ford. The committee met throughout that summer and into the fall in Bay Street board rooms and consultants’ offices. From the beginning it included John Capobianco, a heavyweight Conservative, Liberal organizer Bob Richardson, former Toronto deputy mayor Case Ootes, pollster Robert Hutton, former council candidate Ken Chan and a handful of others.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/10/27/the-night-that-turned-the-tide-f...

 

terrytowel

NorthReport wrote:

Cut the nonsense tt.

Liberals and Conservatives privately working together did Chow in.

The night that turned the tide for John Tory’s fledgling mayoral campaign

A team of high level provincial and federal Liberals and Conservatives, many of whom had worked against each other in campaigns going back decades, began to meet informally in the summer of 2013. Their goal: find a way to replace Rob Ford. The committee met throughout that summer and into the fall in Bay Street board rooms and consultants’ offices. From the beginning it included John Capobianco, a heavyweight Conservative, Liberal organizer Bob Richardson, former Toronto deputy mayor Case Ootes, pollster Robert Hutton, former council candidate Ken Chan and a handful of others.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/10/27/the-night-that-turned-the-tide-f...

Right and Olivia had her own team of Conservatives and Liberals working for her as well.

So it all evened out.

And she still placed third BEHIND Ford who had NO ONE working on his campaign

BTW your headline "Liberals and Conservatives privately working together did Chow in."

Is NOWHERE in that article. The word "privately" is not even in the text AT ALL in the article above.

And Rokossovsky accusses me of making up quotes?

Rokossovsky

No. I just asked that you provide links, so I don't have to go searching all over the internet to find them, and read them in context. Nick Kouvalis is an excellent campaign organizer. He does a great job selling reactionaries.

He did it with Rob Ford, Christie Clark and now John Tory.

terrytowel

Rokossovsky wrote:

No. I just asked that you provide links, so I don't have to go searching all over the internet to find them, and read them in context. Nick Kouvalis is an excellent campaign organizer. He does a great job selling reactionaries.

He did it with Rob Ford, Christie Clark and now John Tory.

OK fair enough.

Stockholm

terrytowel wrote:

She (Blizzard) removed all references to her critical of Andrea, and replaced with with total hatchet job on Wynne.

http://www.torontosun.com/2014/12/16/liberals-may-feel-public-wrath-over...

I think you are being very unfair to Christina Blizzard. In what way did she do a "hatchet job"? What she said about Wynne and her filthy attempt at bribery is 100% true. Wynne clearly tried to entice someone to quit a political race in exchange for a GOVERNMENT job that would have been paid by TAXPAYERS (not by the Ontario Liberal party). Clearly, nothing has changed under Wynne, she is just as arrogant and antitled and corrupt as McGuinty was. I hope she face criminal charges over her bribery attempt in Sudbury.

terrytowel

Stockholm wrote:

terrytowel wrote:

She (Blizzard) removed all references to her critical of Andrea, and replaced with with total hatchet job on Wynne.

http://www.torontosun.com/2014/12/16/liberals-may-feel-public-wrath-over...

I think you are being very unfair to Christina Blizzard. In what way did she do a "hatchet job"? What she said about Wynne and her filthy attempt at bribery is 100% true. Wynne clearly tried to entice someone to quit a political race in exchange for a GOVERNMENT job that would have been paid by TAXPAYERS (not by the Ontario Liberal party). Clearly, nothing has changed under Wynne, she is just as arrogant and antitled and corrupt as McGuinty was. I hope she face criminal charges over her bribery attempt in Sudbury.

Sorry I was running out the door when I wrote this. Maybe 'hatchet' was too strong of a word. But I was in a hurry, and couldn't think of the right word.

But Blizzard did remove criticism of Andrea, and replaced it with criticism of Wynne, but ratched it up a notch.

That was my point.

janfromthebruce

Wynne is looking like the same old Liberal - bribing and coverup for gas plants.

Brachina

 I would say it was niether left nor right, but simply poorly.

mark_alfred

Her campaign had a couple of themes.  Initially it was that she immigrated to Canada when she was 13 and thus had to learn how to "count every penny".  So, she's a good manager with money.  And she worked with Mel Lastman on the budget committee.  Again, a good manager of money, who can work with people of all political stripes.  A uniter.  A fiscally prudent person who will be a good role model.

When Tory, and then Ford, eclipsed her in the polls, she changed the theme of her campaign to "no one should be left behind".  She advocated childcare, after school programs, an increase on the Land Transfer Tax for properties over $2M, more buses, a Downtown Relief Line, an LRT in Scarborough, and to keep property taxes in line with inflation.  So, while she was still emphasizing being fiscally prudent, it was a bit more left than the initial theme of her campaign.

ctrl190
Unionist

Oh Geez - Olivia worked for the National Democratic Institute in Tunisia!? Did anyone know about this?

[url=https://twitter.com/oliviachow/status/534723978183839744]Olivia's tweet[/url]

Quote:
Excited to be heading off to Tunisia to monitor its presidential election and keep Arab Spring alive, with the National Democratic Institute

Apparently she has never heard of the [url=http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/cifamerica/2012/jan/31/american.... That's really unfortunate.

Unionist

*

tducey1

Leftist.