While Andrew Scheer and Justin Trudeau trade shots, it appears the NDP have a different target in mind, themselves.
Over the last year, the Singh team has slowly lost the support of key areas within the NDP base, some out of his control, but
In February of 2018 for example, Singh suspended Erin Weir from his caucus duties pending an independent investigation made into sexual harassment allegations.
Weir was expelled from the NDP caucus on May 3, 2018.
In May 2018, a group of 67 former NDP MPs and MLAs from Saskatchewan sent Singh a letter in support of Weir and calling for his reinstatement as an NDP MP. Singh ignored that letter, and controversially removed Weir permanently, in effect opposing some of the oldest NDP supporters in the country.
Sadly, Saskatchewan is not the only place where the NDP appears to be bleeding.
A recent online poll for the Journal de Quebec places the NDP just 2% percent ahead of the PPC in Quebec with roughly 8% of the vote, a complete meltdown for the party which previously swept Quebec.
This image is basically the same in every province, short of British Columbia, and an extremely small portion of Ontario.
With many of the traditional bases for the NDP collapsing, fundraising numbers have also dropped to record lows, forcing the NDP to re-mortgage the Jack Layton building in Ottawa.
With so many problems, you would expect the party to solely focus on rebuilding its brand. Instead, the past few days have included the current NDP leadership, actively opposing some of the comments made by the previous NDP leader, Thomas Mulcair.
Mulcair, now a paid commentator for CTV, has publicly noted some of the problems currently stifling the NDP, such as Singh’s awkward moment of not knowing that the Chinese ambassador had described Canada as a country of white supremacists.
He has also notably pointed out that with the NDP falling apart, many voters who traditionally considered themselves New Democrats, could switch to the Green party.
With Green party fundraising rising rapidly, the NDP’s dropping, and both parties hovering around the 37.5 mark in the Nanos Power Index, Mulcair’s statements are not shocking.
Now it seems, party loyalists have no intent to actually fix their party, instead choosing to attack their former leader, with NDP MP Charlie Angus, describing Mulcair as “bitter”.
While Mulcair could be in fact bitter, his analysis has been fair and to the point.
Even if hard-core partisans may want to think otherwise, the party is losing ground and could stand to face absolute devastation in the upcoming election, especially at the hands of the growing Green party.
As a former NDP’er, that is truly sad.
If the NDP wants to counter this they need to learn from the advancements of modern politics, and finally adopt a no-holds-bar approach which borrows populist energy.
Something that actually calls out the Trudeau government actively, and forcefully. Which can in the mind of Canadians provide an alternative path, different to that of the governing Liberals.
Right now, sadly the party seems more like a less capable, less energetic, and overall less important version of the Liberal government. On policy there are very few noticeable differences between the NDP and the Liberal party.
What do you think?
Will the party stop fighting its own members long enough to focus on Trudeau? Join the conversation by commenting below!