Back in the mists of time, a half-century ago, there was a majority Liberal government that went though the same sort of mid-term pain that Justin Trudeau’s government is experiencing today, as its poll numbers slide, ministers stumble, key policies unravel and the opposition, smelling blood, circles impatiently.
Justin Trudeau and his band of “sunny ways” Liberals have approached the political equivalent of the continental divide – two years in and two years to go before the next election on Oct. 21, 2019. They have had two years to enjoy the fruits of victory and to keep – or not – their campaign promises. Now they face two years of heavier slogging as they try to build momentum for re-election.
There was a time, less than a million years ago, when the federal Liberals prided themselves on their ability to get things done.
They might not have been lovable or even very likeable, and most of the time they weren’t. They were not a warm and cuddly outfit. They didn’t take selfies, hug voters, or remove their shirts in public. (Can anyone imagine “Uncle Louis” St. Laurent – his most famous quote: “If we are to preserve civilization, we must first remain civilized” – on a beach showing off his tattoos?)
This is the topic of a new paper of mine avaiable for early view and scheduled for publication in the September 2017 issue of the academic journal, Canadian Public Administration.
Here's the abstract: