Back on February 4th Tom Mulcair was speculating that some NDP supporters might think the Green Party deserved a second look.
It is an interesting thought. Should it happen, it could seriously damage the election chances of the NDP, and it has the potential to damage the Liberals as well.
The NDP is in bad shape- they have come off of their worse fundraising quarter, their leader is struggling to be relevant and they keep sending mixed policy messages such as on Venezuela.
In the mean time the Greens are on a roll, at least at the provincial level. They elected three members in New Brunswick, one in Ontario and may have a chance in PEI. Plus, the federal party has just had its best fundraising quarter ever.
So called “progressives” (really who invents these terms) have the choice of backing Trudeau who has failed on almost every issue that is dear to them. From double-crossing them on proportional representation; to lots of flash, but little substance on environmental issues; to killing one pipeline only to then buy another one and the list goes on.
NDP supporters, especially those who are strong on the environment could easily go to the Green Party.
Other NDPers who worry about a Conservative win, may feel they have no choice but to hold their nose and support Trudeau. Either way the NDP pays a price.
As for the two main stream federal parties, they need to wake up and smell the coffee too. Voters are tired of the same old policies and lack of vision. They are tired of the daily antics they see from both sides. They are tired of the name calling and mudslinging.
Just look at the last election in Quebec where the voters gave both of the main stream provincial parties, the PQ and the Liberal Party, a wake-up call by electing the CAQ.
So far, the Greens have never really convinced federal voters that they have more to offer than their stance on environmental issues. But they do appeal to younger voters which is a growing demographic.
Most voters, young or old, would be surprised to know that the Green policy platform, excluding photos, only has 4 pages on the environment out of a total of 44 pages. There is lots in there on a national senior’s program, the CPP, reducing red tape for small business, supporting the manufacturing sector, pharmacare, eliminating student debt etc.
If they ever figure out how to communicate their platform better, they could become a force to be reckoned with. That is bad news for the NDP, and it should be a wake-up call for both the Conservatives and the Liberals.
Was Mulcair just causing a bit of trouble by trying to get even with the party that dumped him as leader, or is he on to something? The next election will tell if he was right.