Scheer has to up his game to defeat Trudeau in 2019

In an extremely divisive political climate, is Andrew Scheer, the Conservative Party Leader, acting enough to substantiate a win for his Tories?

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It’s time for Progressive Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer to step up his game.

The soft words and kind approach he’s used so far won’t translate into votes in the next federal election scheduled for Oct. 21, 2019.

As early as last January, the people who write the editorials and columns for Canada’s major newspapers were begging Scheer to get in the game.

The headline on a Globe and Mail opinion story back in January was “Tory Leader Andrew Scheer’s shtick simply isn’t cutting it.” Another story from iPolitics the same month was headlined: “Face it, Conservatives. Picking Scheer was a mistake.”

Maclean’s magazine: “Andrew Scheer’s Everyman image won’t be enough to beat Justin Trudeau”.  All those opinions were dead on.

Sheer’s answer to the crisis at the U.S. border with asylum seekers was to designate all unofficial crossings as official.  His answer to Trudeau’s importation of refugees from overseas was: “Legitimate refugees and immigrants looking to reunite with their family are being forced to wait while Justin Trudeau prioritizes illegal border crossers. This has been an issue for well over a year but Justin Trudeau has failed to take action.”

What he should have said was 1) It’s time to secure the border and repel invaders and 2) The acceptance of refugees needs to end until Canada finds homes for 30,000 of its own people without a place sleep each night.

Then there’s the recent battle over the Trans-Mountain Pipeline project. Scheer criticizes Trudeau for getting the government to buy the pipeline for $4.5 billion.

“Justin Trudeau is spending $4.5 billion in taxpayer money to buy a pipeline he can’t even build,” Scheer said in a statement Tuesday “This is quickly becoming the most expensive scandal in the history of Canadian politics. This is Justin Trudeau’s personal failure.”

In the same statement, he criticized Trudeau for his positions on other pipeline deals.

“He vetoed the Northern Gateway pipeline, and then killed Energy East with last-minute regulatory changes that favoured foreign imports over Canadian energy,” the statement reads.

“Canada’s Conservatives are the only party fighting for the hardworking men and women in our resource sector, whose jobs and livelihoods depend on the projects that Justin Trudeau has failed to champion,” the statement continues. “A Conservative government will fix the mess Justin Trudeau has made.”

But how will the Conservatives fix it? This is the plan:

“First thing we need to do is restore investor confidence in Canada,” he told Global News’ Dallas Flexhaug back in April.

He said pipelines shouldn’t be funded with tax dollars.

“Kinder Morgan doesn’t want taxpayers’ money, they want to pay taxes,” he said. “They want to build the project with shareholders’ money, putting people back to work and getting Canadian energy to market.”

But how will any government of any stripe get shareholders’ money for this pipeline now?

And is it all Trudeau’s fault? I mean you have native people who can’t decide whether they are in favour or against the project.

What do First Nations really think about Trans Mountain?

“Some love it, some hate it, and some want a better deal” the headline in the National Post back in April read.

That almost sounds like Andrew Scheer’s position on most issues. You know let’s make all unofficial crossings officials to enable border officials to repel invaders, instead of just saying let’s repel invaders.

Or we’ll take these types of refugees but not another type. Or the latest on the pipeline issue in which he says he would encourage the oil and gas industry “to come back to the table” and would eliminate what he calls the “double standard on Canadian energy.” But doesn’t say how he would do that.

Scheer needs to issue some concrete plans to erase Trudeau’s failures and get Canadians to believe they have a clear alternative to the Liberals come next October. So far, it hasn’t happened. It better happen soon.


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Jeff Wilkinson

Jeff Wilkinson is a retired writer, who worked 35 years in print and broadcast journalism before retiring. He also served in the press operations crews at the 2015 Pan Am Games and the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto.

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