2019 could be Elizabeth May’s defining election

After nearly four years of poor Liberal mismanagement alongside an even worse performance from NDP leader Jagmeet Singh, the Greens stand as the clear momentum gaining organization on the left.
Ali Taghva Montreal, QC

With only a few months left until the next Canadian federal election, the leader of the Green party should be in a rather celebratory mood.

After nearly four years of poor Liberal mismanagement alongside an even worse performance from NDP leader Jagmeet Singh, the Greens stand as the clear momentum gaining organization on the left.

While May celebrates wins from her base, her potential opposition sits in a precarious situation.

According to recent polls, Andrew Scheer’s Conservative Party appears to be losing some steam, as many voters appear to be either moving past or forgetting about the disastrous Liberal SNC-Scandal.

This at the same time that PPC leader Maxime Bernier announces an almost full slate of candidates, and a substantial fundraising haul quite similar to Elizabeth May.

The Greens and PPC have both also raised more than a $1 million this year, the Greens beating their previous fundraising record, and the PPC crashing through all previous records for new parties.

Now by no means are these two parties equal, heading in the same direction, or even bound to form government this time.

While Elizabeth May is virtually certain to get into the national debates, Bernier will not unless the Debates Commissioner makes a special consideration.

Outside of the debate problem for the PPC, both the Green party and the PPC are financially outgunned. The Conservatives and Liberals both appear to have raised more than twenty times than their competitors.

While the Greens are in a better position when it comes to election day due to their clear capacity to make it into the debate and in turn contrast themselves against their opposition, realistically neither party will take more than a handful of seats.

Canada’s election system is immensely regional, making a real run in every riding nearly impossible for virtually anyone but the Liberals or the Conservatives.

That overarching limitation won’t mean the newer parties won’t have a potentially game-changing impact on this election or those after it.

Bernier could organize just enough to pull away some votes from Scheer, while Elizabeth May continues to pull at Liberal and NDP voters setting the stage for the following election.

If a minority government is elected, Elizabeth May could win following a vote of no confidence, given her overall high levels of potential support with a large portion of the population supporting her party, as well as the want by many for an alternative voice in government.

Should there be no minority, increased division over issues such as climate change are almost sure to push voters to the Greens, given that the Liberals will be branded as builders of the pipeline by that time.

This path to victory, of course, can only occur if a large part of the more untested parts of her party or herself due not cause serious blunders, a common fatal mistake for start-up movements with a chance to bring change.

Looking at the news cycle, it seems May clearly understands the real chance to pull away tired Liberals and NDP members in preparation for a future election.

Why else would a party based largely on moral actions hire a former Liberal strategist who goes against much of the Green brand stands for?

Because Warren understands winning at a truly intuitive level, and after years at the helm building a green coalition, is tired of waiting and wants to win.

Could Elizabeth May really one day be our Prime Minister?

Looking at the global trend towards populism as well as her party’s trajectory the quick answer is quite possibly yes.

Just not in 2019.

This election is all down to Trudeau and Scheer.

What do you think? Join the conversation by commenting below!

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Ali Taghva
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