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article imageOp-Ed: Mulcair the logical choice for Conservative supporters

By Ken Hanly     Aug 22, 2015 in Politics
Ottawa - Except for dedicated loyalists who will hear no evil, see no evil, nor speak no evil of Stephen Harper most supporters of the Conservative Party must realize that the Harper brand is irredeemably damaged.
The question now for Conservative supporters is: " What is to be done? " A careful examination of the facts points to a rather surprising answer. Conservative supporters should vote for the New Democratic Party under its leader Thomas Mulcair. This may appear shocking and counter-intuitive to many but consider some of the reasons why this makes sense.
Before he became leader of the NDP , Mulcair actually tried to get a job with the Federal Conservatives as an advisor to the Harper government. According to one narrative he did not get the job because he asked for double the money being offered. According to an alternative version, Mulcair could not support Harper's environmental policies so the deal fell through. So why did he seek the job knowing the dismal record of Harper on the environment? Did he hope to reform the Harper government perhaps? According to former senior Conservative staffers the talks about the position were a prelude to having Mulcair run as a Conservative candidate in 2008. If Mulcair was acceptable as an advisor and a Conservative candidate surely he deserves the votes of conservatives now when Harper's star is dimming and may soon go dark.
There is nothing strange about the Conservatives, even the Harper Conservatives, supporting prominent NDP figures. Gary Doer was a long-time NDP premier of Manitoba. He resigned when Stephen Harper offered him the position of Canadian ambassador to the US. No doubt he is busy in Washington promoting the Keystone XL pipeline and other projects and policies pushed by the Harper government.
Mulcair would carry on the adulation of Israel characteristic of Harper. As well as cracking down on critics of Israel within the NDP, Mulcair said: “I am an ardent supporter of Israel in all situations and in all circumstances.” [“…je suis un ardent supporter de toutes les instances et de toutes les circonstances d’Israël.”]*
~Thomas Mulcair, quoted in Canadian Jewish News, May 1st, 2008
Even on economic matters where the NDP is regarded as interventionist, spendthrift, and opposed to free market neo-liberal policies, Mulcair has expressed admiration and support for that darling of conservatives globally Margaret Thatcher. Waxing eloquent, Mulcair declaimed while a member of the Quebec provincial Liberal government that the success of the UK economy under Thatcher's Conservative Party rule was due to the "winds of liberty and liberalism" that "swept across the markets in England". Sounding very much like a neo-liberal apologist and pundit Mulcair in 2001 said: "A government should never pretend it can replace the private market. It does not work," Mulcair said in 2001. "It didn't work in England. Up until Thatcher's time, that's what they tried, the government stuck its nose everywhere." This surely shows that Mulcair espouses conservative values even though as leader of an allegedly left-leaning party he may from time to time spout rhetoric he thinks appropriate to retaining his leftist base. If there is any doubt here is another bit from Mulcair that could easily come from a writer for the Fraser Institute: "..interventionism is a failure. A government can create the conditions conducive to the creation of jobs… but the best way for a government to create wealth is to let the private market thrive and to get off the back of business men and women."
Surely there is a compelling case for Conservative supporters to vote NDP this time around.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
More about thomas mulcair, Margaret thatcher, canadian federal election
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