As the 2019 election nears and the sunny ways face a possible first-term defeat, they have made an interesting u-turn.
In their most recent omnibus budget bill, tucked away on page 392, are a series of changes to the Immigration and Refugee Act, which in effect, go against the same aggressive rhetoric that the party put forward in the past.
The largest change involves no longer accepting accepting the asylum claims of individuals who have already applied, been approved, or have been rejected in other countries. It went even further than just reducing claims from the American border, as the policy would apply to claimants on our soil as well as abroad.
Andrew Coyne perhaps summarized this rapid switch best in his recent National Post article titled: “In two years, Liberals go from #WelcomeToCanada to deportations without hearings.”
While the policy change is important, the choices made by the Liberals and the manner in which they made them should plainly be questioned.
Until this bill, Liberals seemingly relished any opposition questioning of the rapidly destabilizing refugee arrivals, which they gleefully used as a chance to fear-monger and paint their opponents as alt-right racists, who have no place in Canada.
When Michelle Rempel brought up early issues with the Safe Third Country agreement, Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen responded by claiming Conservatives want to “militarize” the border with the United States in an attempt to stop the tens of thousands of asylum seekers who enter Canada between official points of entry.
Even now, the Liberals are road-testing campaign attacks mostly based on describing their opposition as alt-right, this time making sure to conveniently keep refugees out of the discussion. All of a sudden, focusing instead on “immigration.”
This kind of policy u-turn alongside a continued use of desperate sounding rhetoric raises the question that many of us have been asking even more often these days: “What are Liberal voters thinking?”
After such years of deflecting any mention of border policy as unCanadian white supremacy, you would expect them to now see the worse aspects of the movement they opposed installed directly in the government they voted for.
All this providing cover for the real white supremacist narratives that continue to grow unchallenged.
For this u-turn, progressives and conservatives deserve answers. The Liberal Party, like so many times in their history, has become the same as those they very recently opposed.
Either they now realize that they have in fact been the fear-mongerers all along, or they are just in blind and panicked damage control. Perhaps both!
But hey, perhaps in the “current year” (+4) elections win themselves too.
What do you think? Join the conversation by commenting below!