Election Of Justin Trudeau Marks Shift To Left For Canada, Ends Decade-Long Conservative Rule

Canadian voters took a sharp turn left after ten years of conservative rule by leading Canada’s Liberal leader Justin Trudeau toward a resounding defeat of Conservative Party Prime Minister Stephen Harper as Liberals landed a large Parliamentary victory.

Just as President Barack Obama entered office promoting a policy stance that emphasized diplomacy, Trudeau is pushing “pro-active” diplomacy, which represents a break from the Harper administration.

In addition to trying to repair a relationship with the US that was damaged by dust-ups over the Keystone Pipeline and issues in the Middle East, Trudeau’s government likely will be more engaged at the United Nations and in global efforts to combat climate change.

“We will re-engage in multilateral institutions and show that Canada can be a constructive voice again on the world stage,” said Robert Asselin, one of Mr. Trudeau’s senior advisers told Canada’s Globe & Mail.

The upcoming Paris summit on the environment occurring in December will provide Trudeau with his first opportunity to demonstrate his stated intention to be a leader in terms of meeting emissions limits.

“We will go to Paris united as a country in our desire to reduce our emissions,” Trudeau said in September.

Trudeau has also promised to work with the provinces to put a market price on the country’s emissions.

The markets initially had a cautious reaction to Trudeau’s victory, which is certain to bring about increased government spending and increased taxes on the rich.

“With a majority government in place, there is much more clarity on the outlook for policy and certainty that the next election will be at least four years away,” BMO Capital Markets economists Douglas Porter and Benjamin Reitzes said, according to the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday morning.

As Canada’s Globe & Mail notes, the major “hole” in the Liberal Party’s economic plans is funding, particularly how more generous health and pension programs would be financed.

“One of the most obvious flaws of the Liberal economic plan is that some key initiatives aren’t fully priced out, or require negotiating with provinces and territories, which seldom agree on anything,” but “the largest hole in the Liberal economic plan involves how Ottawa would pay for promised health-care improvements,” reports Bill Curry and Barrie McKenna.

 

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