Liberal Party of Canada elects Justin Trudeau as leader

Canada’s Liberal Party has had its troubles in recent years. Two years ago they suffered the worst election result in their history, returning only 34 MPs and falling to an unprecedented third place behind the Conservative and New Democratic parties.

The Guardian reports that Justin Trudeau was elected the party’s leader with a massive majority. He attained 80% of the vote, a good start for somebody who needs to unify the party after years of infighting. His acceptance speech attempted to put those divisions behind the party:

I don’t care if you thought my father was great or arrogant,” Trudeau said. “It doesn’t matter to me if you were a Chretien-Liberal or a Martin-Liberal or any other kind of Liberal. The era of hyphenated Liberals ends right here right now.

Justin is the son of  the man who was Canada’s Prime Minister for much of the time between 1968 and 1984, the popular Pierre Trudeau who was once praised by John Lennon. The former Beatle met Trudeau in 1969,at the end of his Peace Tour, and pronounced that if all politicians were like Pierre Trudeau, there would be world peace.

His message of thanks on the Party’s website is cleverly balanced between hope and optimism and warnings about how the opposition are just waiting to attack:

It doesn’t matter who you supported or what role you played. You were a part of something big.

We brought together over 100,000 people around the hopes and dreams we all share to build the start of a real movement for change.

You showed what can be accomplished when we work together, driven by a love of Canada, a passion to make this country better, and a belief that politics can be done differently.

But we’re just beginning.

There’s much more to do, and tomorrow we’ll face new challenges. The people who want to maintain the status quo at all costs aren’t resting — they’ve seen what we can do, and they’re already planning negative and misleading attacks to stop us.

Don’t let anyone drown out our positive message of change — make a donation right now and help us get ready for what comes next.

Time will tell whether a young and charismatic leader with a prestigious liberal background will get the party back on track. He has two years before he faces the country in 2015.

You can watch his acceptance speech on You Tube.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in Europe / International and News.
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8 Comments

  • Good luck to him. It will be a serious achievement if the Liberals can come back from their devastation under the foolish opportunist Ignatieff.

  • Well the Canadian conservatives came back from having just 1 seat in recent memory!
    Comments on Canadian liberalism need to have regard to the fact that the NDP are in fact a more radical splinter party which overtook the traditional party at the last GE there. If Trudeau fils can lure them back, and make inroads in Quebec, he may be PM very soon.

  • It’s all because of that charity boxing match last year, where he somewhat surprisingly knocked out the widely-fancied Conservative senator. If Clegg is looking to boost his ratings, he could do worse than belt an obnoxious tory in the face on live TV

  • LOL, “Let’s make it happen!”

  • Alex Sabine 15th Apr '13 - 6:52pm

    Hah! Perhaps he should suggest a showdown in the ring instead of the TV election debates 🙂

    You never know, it could be the key to reviving Cleggmania…

  • Alex Macfie 15th Apr '13 - 7:12pm

    It was 2 seats, and one reason for that disastrous showing by the Progressive Conservative Party (as it was oxymoronically called back then in 1993) was the emergence of the Reform Party, also a more radical (in a right-wing way) splinter party, which split the right-wing vote. The two parties subsequently merged; the present Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, was originally in the Reform Party.

    So history seems to be repeating itself in Canadian politics, but this time on the left.

  • David Wilkinson 16th Apr '13 - 8:22am

    A Liberal leading a Liberal party, anyone told Nick

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