PRINT – Asian Tribune (Weekly) – Edmonton, 30/08/2019 – News, English
Image source: https://torontolife.com/city/life/behind-the-scenes-with-jagmeet-singh/
This story quotes Singh as stating “I am simply taking a stand on principle” after a video had just been released showing the Conservative leader, Andrew Scheer, speaking against gay marriage in Parliament — in 2005. The “news” of Scheer’s publicly stated position of 14 years ago — a position shared by many progressives at the time, which he has since recanted — had so shaken Singh that he could not in good conscience be responsible for propping up the Conservatives in power. Behind Singh’s move, rather than a tactical blunder or a moral line in the sand, it may simply be an attempt to position the party to advantage in the pre-election jockeying for strategic voters — aimed, specifically, at the NDP’s mortal rivals on the left, the Greens. Why might this be so? Consider, first, the current state of play in the polls: a tight race between the Conservatives and the Liberals, with no more than a percentage point between them on average, both in the low 30s. The most likely outcome, if this holds: a minority Parliament of some kind, with neither party capable of governing on its own.Next, consider the likely strategies of the two major parties in response. The Liberals will do what they nearly always do: paint the Conservatives as racists, Nazis and worse, the better to frighten NDP and Green supporters into voting Grit as the only way to “stop the Tories.” The Conservatives, for their part, will respond with a time-tested fear campaign of their own, this one aimed at centrist voters. In a minority parliament, they will say, the alternative to the Conservatives is not the Liberals, but the Liberals propped up by the NDP (boo!) and/or the Greens (yikes!). Only a Tory majority, the party will insist, can avert this dreaded scenario. Where the NDP are wishy-washy and opportunistic, but steady and experienced, and the Greens are drunk on their newfound popularity.