Canada deserves better, because better is, after all, always possible. Our democracy permits us to choose a new leader when the current one falls short of even his own stated ideals, as Trudeau repeatedly has.
There was a telling moment on the campaign trail just days ago. Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau was asked if he had any regrets about his four years in power. Trudeau answered, in part, that Canadians “find ourselves more polarized, more divided in this election than in 2015. I wonder how, or if, I could have made sure we were pulling Canadians together?”
It was a revealing answer. Trudeau is certainly right that Canadians are divided today. He may indeed genuinely wonder if he could have done more to help. But his answer doesn’t contain a hint, not even the faintest glimmer, of any understanding that he himself shares some responsibility for the discord — not because of helpful things he could have done but didn’t, but because of the harmful things he and his party have done. Trudeau is a man much better able to apologize for the failures of those long dead than recognize where his own conduct has fallen short.
Fundamentally, in stark contrast to the incumbent Liberals, the Conservatives recognize that sound fiscal management is an unavoidable precondition for growing an innovative and productive economy.
But what the Conservatives are offering most of all is a break with the selfish, often preposterous leadership Canadians have seen these past four years. Trudeau is a recognized talent at political branding and optics — his government has been a highly polished PR machine, and the man himself, as he recently admitted in rather awkward circumstances, has a weakness for costumes and pageantry. This doesn’t only include his personal dress, and an awful habit of donning blackface makeup, but also his political career — Trudeau’s Liberals have shown themselves to be absolutely shameless in their willingness to promise one thing while delivering another. And they don’t seem to realize that Canadians have noticed.
The Conservatives and Andrew Scheer have a realistic plan to do this, grounded in an understanding of what governments can and should do.
Justin Trudeau, for his part, has his record — not that he’s dared run on it.
The choice is clear. Canada needs a Conservative government.