Former NDP MP
But our national NDP campaign let us down in spectacular fashion. That it was so tone deaf to the mood of the nation and ultimately so incompetent in its campaign offer to Canadians, was simply heartbreaking. At the historic moment when Canadians overwhelmingly wanted change, our national campaign appeared to want to match the tone and approach of the Conservatives. Many have commented on the failure of the Leader to answer questions on the opening day of the campaign, the failure to debate unless the PM was present, and generally the failure to inspire Canadians. I agree.
Clearly the federal NDP campaign failed to communicate with Canadians. There was no coherent message, no optimism, no passion. The NDP had a progressive platform that the national campaign neglected to advertise. Campaign ads were often insipid, and sometimes, there were no ads at all. Where were the voices of young families struggling to find and pay for childcare? Where were ads with low wage federal workers, like at Pearson Airport, struggling at poverty level wages to make ends in the Canada's largest city? Why didn't we defend our plan to raise corporate taxes to pay for social programs?'
The national NDP campaign failed to promote the progressive issues that set us apart from the other parties, and then allowed the Liberals to define the NDP as regressive on balanced budgets. Why was the decision made during the 2015 election concerning deficits, just as the resource sector was nosediving?
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Which brings me to the leadership question. The Leader too has to share the blame and Tom Mulcair has acknowledged this. Some delegates tell me they will support him anyway because he's good in Question Period. Others say they'll support him because there's no other candidate, because someone else could be worse, because we can always bring in a new leader in two years, or because this is the NDP and he deserves another try. Not all are good reasons. Some delegates have already decided to vote for a leadership review.
I will be a delegate in Edmonton next weekend. Frankly I haven't yet decided how I'm going to vote. I want to hear what Tom Mulcair offers us at the convention. He's had six months to reflect on the events of the 2015 campaign. I hope he throws away talking points and speaks from the heart. I hope he shows us the passion that was so lacking in the federal campaign, and that he inspires us with a vision of a better Canada and a plan to rebuild.
Canada needs the NDP to build a truly progressive, sustainable, inclusive and fair Canada. The NDP urgently needs the leader who can get us there.Quote: