It appears (yawn) that we’re going to have to put up with election speculation (yawn) every day between now and when the members of Parliament take their three-month summer break. This break (yawn) follows their pre-Easter break, their Easter break and their post-Easter break, which was last week.
Before that (how do our lawmakers endure the strain?) there was their mid-winter break, and before that the Christmas break, and before that the pre-Christmas break when Stephen Harper shut the doors of Parliament to save his government.
When they’re not breaking, the MPs are posturing (yawn) as they are now with election bluster. It is clear there won’t be an election called before the summer break. For one thing, we just had an election last fall. For another, the issue of changes to employment insurance isn’t important enough to trigger a new one. For another, Liberals are unlikely to get the support of the opposition parties to defeat the government on a non-confidence motion.
And so everybody should relax and tune out politics until the MPs return to work in late September before their weeklong Thanksgiving break in mid-October.
By that time, the Conservatives hope the recession will be easing off and their attack ads will have succeeded in making voters believe Michael Ignatieff is an arrogant elitist whose only interest in this country has been for vacation stopovers.
They should bear in mind, however, that the last so-called arrogant elitist who sat in the king’s chair was Pierre Trudeau. A new poll rating modern prime ministers shows Trudeau on top by a huge margin. He scored 39 per cent, with everyone else in the footnote category at 11 per cent or worse. Stephen Harper was at 11 per cent, but the bad news for him was he topped the list for worst PM, scoring 22 per cent.
Trudeau also had the reputation of someone who cared more what was happening in the salons of Paris than the bowling alleys of Moose Jaw. That didn’t hurt him either. He also had the reputation of being an intellectual, something else the anti-Iggy ads scorn. That didn’t hurt him either.
Come to think of it, maybe the Grits ought to be saluting the ads painting their new guy as an outsider.
The thing about Trudeau was he wasn’t pedestrian, like (yawn) some latter-day prime ministers we know. That’s why he was and is still admired. His outsider aura gave him a compelling mystique. He rose above — as national leaders should — our collective mundanity.