Opinion: What’s the point of the NDP?

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What would Canada’s NDP look like if it ceased to be its own separate party, and instead operated as a phalange of governing liberals? Will the new Democratic principles, initiatives and practices be markedly different from what the Canadians are now offering?

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If, one day, the NDP morphs from its current role as the figurative Progressive side of the Liberal Party to the literal Progressive side of the Liberal Party – will anyone notice? Or will it be NDP leader Jagmeet Singh wearing a red tie and playing Rani’s song in the hotel lobby before the public realizes that the two parties have become one?

Liberals, led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, have continued to encroach on the NDP’s territory: on the legalization of marijuana, as first promised during the 2015 election; setting a price on carbon, though with a tax, contrary to former NDP leader Tom Mulcair’s pledge to a national cap-and-trade system; on access to affordable daycare through its $10-day deal with the provinces; on social justice, reconciliation and inclusive initiatives; And so on.

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The NDP would sometimes protest: “Hey, that was our idea first!” Each time, however, they would hand that idea over to the liberals and replace that hitherto occupied space with nothing. The party’s final forfeiture of leverage and autonomy came through a trust and supply agreement with the Liberals in March, when the NDP pledged to support the government until 2025; In return, liberals would implement some NDP initiatives, such as dental care, and claim essentially all of the credits themselves.

The NDP can again insist, “Hey, that was our idea,” to anyone who will listen – but now it gets to do so while gritting its teeth and voting on any and all important matters with the government. It also received the liberals’ compromised version of its initiative, including an interim dental care “program”, a plan to distribute checks, while insisting the party would not make any further concessions. (we will see!)

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The NDP’s seeming role as an offshoot of the Liberal Party was put to work once again last week, when the party issued a 30-second timeout. attack ad Against Conservative Party leader Pierre Poiliver. Transmitting the style and essence of conservatives’ OneDS For the 2011 election against former Liberal leader Michael Ignatief (“He didn’t come back for you!”), this NDP ad claims Mr. Claims to be an advocate for, he is actually “a friend of big business and the corporate elite”.

From a libertarian point of view, this is perfect. The NDP is doing the dirty work by throwing mud against the new Conservative leader, while the Liberal Party is told to keep its hands clean and perpetuate the illusion that it will pass bills on doubling the GST exemption and topping Canada housing benefits. too busy to do. Indulging in foolish partisan expulsions.

Best of all, the ad is non-specific: it does not attempt to promote the NDP, or instead outline any methods advocating for a Canadian activist. It simply asserts that Mr. Polyver is not, and leaves the rest to the observer to find out. Mr. Singh’s communications team should have gotten the fruit basket from the Prime Minister’s Office, if it hasn’t already.

The NDP knows that it is now being squeezed on both the political sides. Not only is the party being overthrown by the governing liberals on social issues, climate, health care, etc., but now conservatives are appealing directly to the party’s old bread-and-butter: the blue-collar activist. In fact, what former Conservative leader Erin O’Toole started with her labor reforms package during the last election has been picked up and activated by Mr. Poilievre – who has toured the country over the past several months and mourned the growing Have lamented the cost of living and its impact on the average Canadian.

The change has misguided and confused the NDP, with Mr. Singh both easing the pain of inflation for the Canadian household, while also Condemnation Efforts by the Bank of Canada to curb inflation through raising interest rates. What is the point of NDP then? Uh, better support for Canadian workers, I suppose, but delivered a little differently.

The question of what justifies the NDP as a separate federal party should not be rhetorical. As it exists now, it is no more an alternative than a dominant force: a progressive nag at the discretion of liberals that can influence policy, but does not offer a viable or electable replacement – ​​and especially Not since he has committed to supporting the governing party for the next three years.

Certainly many Canadians still support and will continue to support the New Democrats, but not without reason, that support probably stems more from disillusionment with Trudeau and hatred for Mr. Appeals Platform.

So what is the NDP in 2022? Mr Singh will tell you – as he finishes Mr Trudeau’s raucous work.




Source: www.theglobeandmail.com

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