August 09, 2021
Politics Blog: Tough times for Erin O’Toole

Ottawa – August 9, 2021 – With a federal election on the horizon, Conservative Party of Canada leader Erin O’Toole has failed to gain traction with voters, and according to latest polls, is looking less and less capable of leading them to victory.

O’Toole has attempted to make his party sound softer by talking about carbon pricing and being friendly to labour but his rhetoric often contradicts his actions. For instance, he supports the removal of regulations on the oil and gas sector meant to tackle climate change and even supported Trudeau’s back-to-work legislation against Port of Montreal workers.
O’Toole relied on votes from social conservatives to win the party leadership but has claimed he would not be running a campaign against a woman’s right to choose and that he supports the LGBTQ2S community.

Meanwhile, he orders his deputy chief of staff to assist social conservatives in securing nominations to run as candidates in the upcoming election. O’Toole himself voted in support of the bill to outlaw conversion therapy but over half of his caucus – 62 MPs voted against the bill, to the outrage of LGBTQ2S communities.

Right-wing premiers have been little help in O’Toole’s attempt to portray a softer more caring conservatism. When assessing the actions of his provincial counterparts one can anticipate what a federal conservative government would look like.

Jason Kenney has launched an attack against pandemic heroes, attempting to roll back the wages of nurses in Alberta. Manitoba premier Brian Pallister has doubled down on his comments regarding the “good intentions” of residential schools, even as the discovery of Indigenous children buried in unmarked graves continues to grow. In Ontario, Doug Ford continues to use Ministerial Zoning Orders to over-rule environmental regulations to benefit his developer friends.

The result of these actions has voters weary of O’Toole and the Conservative Party of Canada as a government in waiting. This is good news for progressives, however, as it is becoming more difficult for Trudeau to scare the electorate into voting for the liberals out of fear alone.
In this election, especially coming out of the pandemic, voters are looking for real change and have an opportunity to vote for what they truly want and not having to make decisions out of fear.

The NDP has seized this opportunity by offering a real alternative to voters. It is no longer enough to just talk a good game – as the time for real action is before us. Whether it be the need to establish a national pharmacare and dentalcare system or providing universal childcare or once and for all solving the drinking water crises in First Nations communities it is Jagmeet Singh who has shown principled leadership on these issues.