Obvious NDP is down, but Trudeau providing windows of opportunity: Broadbent

NDP down, but far from out: Broadbent

OTTAWA — While it’s “obvious” the NDP is down at the moment, former leader Ed Broadbent said Thursday he’s confident of a revival — thanks in large part to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Trudeau’s decision to abandon a Liberal pledge on electoral reform is just one of many political opportunities for New Democrats, Broadbent said in an interview Thursday on the sidelines of the Progress Summit — an event held annually in Ottawa by the institute that bears his name.

“I think there will be a revival of the party now, in part because of what Trudeau has not delivered,” Broadbent said.

Trudeau “chickened out” on tackling income inequality by failing to increase capital gains taxes in the most recent federal budget, Broadbent said, pointing to remarks Trudeau made in Hamburg, Germany where the prime minister suggested leaders need to ‘get real’ about tackling the issue.

“When companies post record profits on the backs of workers consistently refused full-time work — and the job security that comes with it — people get defeated,” Trudeau told business leaders in the February address.

“Increasingly, inequality has made citizens distrust their governments, distrust their employers. It turns into ‘us versus them’.”

Broadbent said he suspects Trudeau backed down in the face of opposition from elites, adding he had hoped to see a change to capital gains taxes in the fiscal blueprint.

“For me personally, the Hamburg speech was a sign of optimism,” he said. “So … to be candid, I expected a more progressive budget … You make progress in government by changing policy and he didn’t do that.”

Broadbent also said he is pleased with the depth of talent that has so far come forward in pursuit of the party leadership, up for grabs this October.

“There’s a rebuilding effort going on,” he said.

There are four MPs in the running to replace Tom Mulcair: Manitoba’s Niki Ashton, Quebec’s Guy Caron, B.C.’s Peter Julian and Ontario’s Charlie Angus.

Ontario deputy NDP leader Jagmeet Singh is also considering a bid.

Broadbent led the party from 1975 to 1989.

—Follow @kkirkup on Twitter

Kristy Kirkup, The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Well-known B.C. magician ready to charm Chilliwack audiences

Shawn Farquhar brings his Cabaret of Wonders magic show back to the Chilliwack Cultural Centre

Unity Christian the team to beat in 1A basketball

UC’s senior girls are the number one ranked team in B.C., a first in the school’s history.

Woman charged in Abbotsford mall stabbing served time for 2001 killing

Victim in Edmonton killing was stabbed eight times with kitchen knife

Trial date scheduled for man charged with killing Abbotsford officer

Oscar Arfmann slated to go to trial in New Westminster in January 2019

Fraser Valley Thunderbirds top Thompson Blazers to start 2018

The B.C. Major Midget Hockey League team won both games in a weekend road trip to Kelowna.

VIDEO: Orcas put on a show near Hornby Island

Louis Jobodin shares photos and video of his experience

VIDEO: B.C. Lions sign defensive back T.J. Lee to contract for upcoming season

The four-year veteran had a team-high four interceptions and 49 tackles last season with B.C.

How an immigrant to Canada helped Donald Trump prove his mental health

Test that cleared Trump was developed by doctor associated with McGill and Sherbrooke universities

Premier touches on multiple topics ahead of Asia trade trip

Housing and childcare are expected to be the focus of the BC NDP’s first budget in February.

Premier offers condolences to family of boy, 15, killed in Vancouver crossfire

John Horgan: ‘No stone is to be left unturned until we find the perpetrator of this heinous crime’

VIDEO: Explorers uncover Canada’s deepest cave in Fernie

The cave, named Bisaro Anima, was confirmed to have broken the record on New Year’s Day

Vernon to host largest Special Olympics B.C. Winter Games in 2019

Games to be held Feb. 21-23, with more than 800 athletes expected to take part

Ex-BC Liberal staffer focused on ‘favourable’ ethnic communities in scandal: lawyer

Former communications director Brian Bonney’s sentencing hearing for breach of trust is underway

Council tells TransLink commission to make sure road pricing is fair

Maple Ridge tells road pricing commission to make sure system is fair

Most Read