Canada:Justin Trudeau retains control

    There was no justification for the snap election which Justin Trudeau called a few weeks ago. It was a raw power grab, an attempt to ride a wave of good polls to a majority in Parliament that his party had failed to secure in the 2019 election. Trudeau clearly believed this was his moment, but things didn’t go as planned.

    Almost immediately after Trudeau called the election, polls showed a surprisingly tight race with the conservatives nearly even his Liberal Party. It was tight enough that there was some concern Trudeau could lose power and conservative leader Erin O’Toole might be forming a minority government instead. But after yesterday’s election, Trudeau will retain power but he’s in almost exactly the same place he was two years ago. He will once gain be forced to form a minority government with the NDP.

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s political gamble failed to pay off Monday when Canadian voters returned him to office but denied him the expanded bloc of power he had been seeking in Parliament…

    With some votes still being cast or uncounted, the preliminary results were a near repeat of the previous vote. The Liberal Party won 156 seats on Monday — one fewer than it acquired in 2019 — while its main rival, the Conservative Party, won 121 seats, the same as before.

    “If you missed the 2019 election, don’t worry, we just did a rerun for you,” said Duane Bratt, a political scientist at Mount Royal University in Calgary, Alberta…

    Mr. Trudeau will most likely rely on the New Democrats as his primary source of support in Parliament. But despite gaining three seats, the New Democrats’ total, 27, is a long way from holding power.

    This snap election became the most expensive in Canadian history with total spending nearing half a billion US dollars. The fact that Trudeau had even called the election became a major issue with many Canadians saying they didn’t see the point (other than the aforementioned power grab). Even Trudeau’s own explanation didn’t make much sense. He had called for an election in 2019 in the midst of a scandal, claiming the government needed to refocus itself on fighting COVID. Last month he said the new election was about ending the fight against COVID, which sort of seemed like the same thing to many voters. In his victory speech last night, Trudeau confessed that voters were unhappy with him calling a snap election in the midst of the delta wave.

    The day before the election a group supporting Conservative challenger Erin O’Toole posted a new blackface photo of Trudeau on Twitter.

    A similar photo had surfaced prior to the 2019 election. You’ve probably seen this one before:

    It really is amazing that, both here in the US and in Canada, left-wing politicians who campaign on social justice themes can survive photos like these. Apparently the rules are only for the other party.

    As for Trudeau, he’s safe for now. He may call another election in another two years or so. Maybe by then Canadians will have had enough of him.

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