Monday, May 04, 2009

Ignatieff Officially Becomes Liberal Party Leader

Renee and some of the other Canadians I converse with on a regular basis tell me about their disenchantment with their 'pit bull in a sweater vest', AKA Conservative prime minister Stephen Harper.

Their yearning for their own victory over conservatism north of the border may be coming soon. Last weekend the Liberal Party held their convention in Vancouver and formally voted to take the 'interim' tag off Michael Ignatieff.

Say hello to Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff, who received support from 97 per cent of the 3000 delegates attending the convention. He has been the party leader on a interim basis since Stephane Dion resigned in the wake of their October federal election loss.

“You can feel a longing for change sweeping across the land,” Ignatieff said in his acceptance speech. “If we offer our citizens a message of hope I believe Canadians will ask us to form their next government.”

And during the part of his speech that slammed PM Harper, Ignatieff stated, “You have failed to understand that a prime minister has one job and only one job, which is to unite the people of this country. Mr. Harper, you have failed us. If you can't unite Canadians, if you can't appeal to the best in all of us, we can.”

The 'we can' echoed the 'Yes, we can' slogan of President Obama's presidential campaign, who is more popular in Canada than he is here in the States. President Obama during his whirlwind visit to Canada did meet with Ignatieff last February, and they share ties to Harvard University.

Ignatieff gave no sign that he planned to force an early election, despite a Nanos Research poll showing the Liberals with a narrow 36 to 33 per cent lead over the Conservatives.

But that poll, conducted in the wake of recent statements by Ignatieff that tax increases might be needed to pay for deficits being accumulated by the Canadian federal government to pull Canada out of recession, reveals that only 27 per cent of Canadians thought that Ignatieff would make the best prime minister, compared with 32 per cent for Harper.

Stay tuned as the political intrigue in the 'Great White North' continues.

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