It is quite unlikely that the Christmas break from parliament has brought any new perspective to conservative leader Pierre Poilievre. His problem is that he needs to see the report from Justice Paul Rouleau on the federal government’s use of the emergencies act. Depending on what the Ontario justice reports and how he says it, Poilievre might have some options.
To-date, the Tory leader is conflicted by his own awkward positioning. He welcomed the ‘Freedom’ convoy to Ottawa with open arms—obviously not aware of their intent to make the city’s major streets party central for over a month. His claim that the protestors would have left if the prime minister had met with them was specious and highly unlikely. In addition, his claim that there were “peaceful” elements to the protest was weakened by every day that the foolishness continued. It seemed that the size of the crowd was increasing and the level of disturbance for Ottawa citizens was increasing. Nobody seemed to want to go home.
Part of Poilievre’s problem was the length of time that he had spent as financial critic for the Tories. It became something of a trademark. His use of Zoom over the worst of the pandemic, to attend committee meetings, was studied, artistic and false. He might not have been wearing pants, but the scene the public saw was meticulous, crafted and natty.
He blew it when he started attacking Bank of Canada governor Tiff Macklem. He took most of his supporters out of their depth of understanding. They really could not comprehend Poilievre’s claim that the Bank of Canada was causing the sudden rises in the cost of groceries. And by adding in support for cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin), the subsequent disastrous drop in value of cryptocurrencies turned them into fool’s gold.
But what surprises people these days is that Poilievre is bringing his family into play. He has found that polls show that he is not liked by women voters. He figures he needs to have his wife and children humanize him.
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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