The Winners Of The Canadian Election Are…

Image by ycanada_news via flickr,
Justin Trudeau: Image by ycanada_news via flickr, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial license.

Canada has a new ruling party, and it is truly something to celebrate. In an election that was arguably one of the nastiest in recent memory, and the longest in Canadian history, Canadians can start moving forward.

The incumbent Conservative party ran a campaign built on wedge issues, fear of immigrants, and concern over Muslim terrorists. Sound familiar? These issues have been a major part of the discussion around the 2016 American presidential election, with Republicans sounding very much like the Canadian Conservatives.

American liberals can be excited about these results from Canada. Although Canadians have always tended to be more left socially and economically than Americans, this is showing a shift in ideology from a fear-based discussion to a discussion of the issues.

Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi, a Muslim, and a very vocal opponent to the Conservative’s xenophobic platform, has already commented on the election:

“People are voting, not against something, but for something.”

The “voting against something” surely refers to a platform built on fear of change and fear of outsiders (including Syrian refugees). “Voting for something” is likely referring to a positive campaign by the Liberals– the only one in the election, in my humble opinion. The Liberals’ campaigned on a platform of creating jobs, cutting taxes for the middle class (and increasing taxes for the high earners), infrastructure projects, and supporting new Canadians. The other major parties’ platforms seemed to be mostly attacking the Liberals.

Justin Trudeau, the Liberal leader and Prime Minister-elect of Canada, has been criticized for being too young (a popular attack was, “He’s just not ready”), but he has proven that, by engaging with young Canadians and by speaking out on important issues.┬áHis popularity skyrocketed in the homestretch of the election, as he became more and more outspoken about LGBT issues and about the economy.

 

He also refused to engage with any of the attacks and negative campaigning, and has shown his ability to handle adversity.

This is great news for liberal Americans, and it is something that we all can celebrate.