Election 2019 has come and gone, and the aftermath will be felt for years to come.
Other than the defeat of Lisa Raitt and Ralph Goodale I wasn’t surprised by the results. With such a poor showing in Alberta and Saskatchewan, watch for Trudeau to appoint Goodale to the Senate and make him a cabinet minister at the same time.
Once again, the Conservatives have not been able to expand their base and while their total percentage of the national vote is up, much of this was from areas they already held. Again, they demonstrated their inability to make major gains in the cities and in Quebec and while they picked up a couple in Atlantic Canada, they once again had a dismal performance failing to come anywhere close to the numbers from 1997-2011.
Overall the results were not a surprise as the party doesn’t reflect modern day Quebec, lacks a credible environment plan and offers little to the millennial generation. Harper at least was able to do well in the 905 area code around Toronto.
The Doug Ford factor was probably responsible for some of the poor showing in the GTA and that shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Many people felt Scheer was another Ford and in the end even more cuts were coming.
As is the case when a Conservative leader can’t shut down the abortion issue, it dogged Scheer for much of the campaign. As long as the party base is heavily socially conservative, this issue will be present. You would have thought Scheer could have shut it down the very first time it was raised by reminding the press and voters of Trudeau’s position, but this was left until the end of the campaign. Too late to do any good. The Conservatives need to do a lot of soul searching and find ways to be more reflective of modern Canada and find ways to appeal to metropolitan areas and younger voters. That means moving more towards the center and not going further right. Some how I don’t see that happening.
The Greens managed 3 seats, a pretty poor showing considering all of the hype and press Elizabeth May has received over the years and her “climate emergency” this time around. They will try to spin it as a win, but really? Overall, I wasn’t impressed by their campaign, even if a lot of their policies were interesting.
The NDP will brag that they are the balance of power, but in the end they have lost badly. They at least retained party status and several good MPs have returned.
It will be interesting to see if both the Greens and NDP conduct a leadership review once the dust settles from this campaign.
Watch for a divisive nasty House of Commons once MPs return. Generally, the lifespan of minority governments is limited. Sometime in the next year or so we should be doing this all over again. Only then we will know if any of the parties learnt some lessons from Election 2019.