A hypocrite is “a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings.” Hypocrites preach one thing and do the exact opposite without any regret or remorse.
Maxime Bernier, aka “Mad Max”, has proven himself a hypocrite with his decision to quit the Conservatives and start his own political party.
Prior to his departure, he went on a tweetstorm, criticizing “extreme multiculturalism” because it will “divide us into little tribes.” However, Mad Max does not practice what he tweets. In quitting the Conservatives, he is on a mission to create a “little tribe” of his own.
Bernier tweeted that identity politics is “divisive and destructive” and that Canadians need a “unifying identity” based on “shared values.” While he may be right that too much emphasis on diversity can create division, his plan to launch a new party is the ultimate act of political division—splitting the Conservative party in two.
Despite his many years of political experience, Bernier hasn’t learned an important lesson of Canadian history.
In the federal elections of 1993, 1997 and 2000, there were two centre-right parties: the Progressive Conservatives and the Reform Party, which later became the Canadian Alliance. The splitting of the conservative vote resulted in three majority governments for Jean Chretien’s Liberals.
History repeated itself again in 2015. In the Alberta provincial election, the NDP won a majority because the conservative vote was split between the Wildrose Party and the Progressive Conservatives.
Canadian history lesson to Maxime Bernier: When conservatives split into two tribes, the inevitable result is that a left-wing party wins the election.
Bernier says he wants to start a new party because the Conservatives are “intellectually and morally corrupt.” In reality, this is the narcissistic practice of devaluing someone before you discard them. Bernier lost the leadership by a razor thin margin to Andrew Scheer and has never accepted the outcome. He can’t let go of his ambition to be the party leader.
Since his failed leadership campaign, Bernier has been a lone wolf, not a team player. According to Scheer, “As shadow minister for innovation, he was given every opportunity to come to the table with his ideas and apply them to policy. He never did.” Bernier could have worked to influence the Conservative party platform from within, but he didn’t even try.
If Bernier is successful in launching a new national party, neither he nor Scheer will become Prime Minister for a simple and obvious reason: There aren’t enough voters in Canada who are centre-right. Few polls since the 2015 election have given conservatives more than 40% of the vote.
Hence, there is no path to electoral victory for Maxime Bernier. Conservatives can only win if we remain united, not divided into warring factions. If the “Mad Max” party receives more than 5% of the popular vote, Justin Trudeau will win another majority in 2019.
Image Credit: https://hypocritepunk.bandcamp.com/