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Canadian Left Sweeps Election, Trudeau to Become First Liberal PM in Nearly a Decade

All news channels are predicting that Justin Trudeau will become the 23rd Prime Minister of Canada and form a majority government. The Liberals are projected to win at least 191 seats as of this writing, exceeding the minimum 170-seat threshold for a majority government.

 The Conservatives are currently projected to win 104 seats, the NDP 32 seats, and Bloc Quebecois 10 seats. 

Beginning with a sweep of virtually all Atlantic Canada’s ridings – 32 of the 338 total seats in the House of Commons – the wave seemed to continue going west across the country as polling stations closed and votes were counted.  

Trudeau’s victory ushers in a new era for the Liberal Party of Canada, which has been plagued with unappealing leadership since at least Paul Martin’s ascendance in 2003. Under Martin’s leadership, the Liberals lost their previous majority government, and then lost power in 2006. Subsequent leadership was equally poor in attempting to rebuild the party’s support; first with a leader who struggled to speak English, then with an aloof part-time Canadian who lived most of his adult life in America.

Justin Trudeau’s father Pierre served as Canada’s 15th Prime Minister between 1968 and 1984, showing that America is not alone in manifestation of what appear as familial political dynasties.

Both Stephen Harper and Thomas Mulcair will resign from the leadership positions of the CPC and NDP, respectively.

Trudeau’s campaign channeled rhetoric reminiscent of President Obama’s presidential reelection campaign in 2012, as well as that of his 2008 campaign while still a senator. His campaign promised “real change,” spoke regularly about the nebulous “middle class,” and framed the consensus of the United Nations as representative of Canada’s international reputation. His campaign also focused on reaching out to young voters. Perhaps most importantly, Trudeau’s campaign has incorporated sophisticated technology for hi-tech GOTV efforts used and proven successful by the Obama campaigns.

Both the Liberals and NDP hired advisors who were alumni of President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign. Cross-pollination of left-wing political strategy across the Canada/U.S. border is not entirely new; David Axelrod advised failed former Ontario Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty. McGuinty is now a lobbyist.

Trudeau has pledged support to a wide range of left-wing causes. While supporting the Keystone XL Pipeline (while fully aware of President Obama’s opposition to it), Trudeau opposes other pipeline projects to bring crude oil to market to the west and east of Canada. He has promised to ease family reunification of refugees in addition to bringing in another 25,000 from Syria. Canada’s state-broadcaster – the CBC – is likely glad to have been promised even greater funding above and beyond the over $1 billion currently flowing into its coffers annually.  

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