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Don Martin: Why should Justin Trudeau enter his last full year as Prime Minister?  Because it’s 2022

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Don Martin: Why should Justin Trudeau enter his last full year as Prime Minister? Because it’s 2022

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It’s a midlife crisis like no other as Justin Trudeau turns 50 and has no choice but to sink.

The three-term prime minister and Christmas Day baby of 1971 faces a grim Omicron entering his seventh year in office while facing a major personal decision: stay or go?

But, but, but, you can tell, that question was answered with Trudeau insisting that he will absolutely run again. Oh, puh-LEEZE. Which leader would relinquish power even hinting at retirement barely three months after the start of a new term?

Common sense says that Trudeau not only tempts fate by going against the traditional electoral calculations of the three knocks and you are left out, but risks the start of impatient growls from the aspiring chiefs of his cabinet.

And yet, it’s not easy to see a lucrative post-political career for a young and healthy party leader who has become obsolete in the country’s top political office.

He can brim with charisma and excel at spontaneous interactions with the masses, but Trudeau tends to deliver plastic scripts through dead-eyed teleprompter readings whenever he steps up to the podium for an official speech.

Add to that a few signs of great intellectual depth and it seems unlikely that Trudeau would be overwhelmed by offers for chairman of the board or maintain an extended world tour of $ 150,000 per speech to a first-rate audience.

That’s not to say that Justin Trudeau’s legacy is simply that of a drama teacher with a last name that qualifies him for the post of prime minister.

He’s done great things, presiding arguably a much more productive era than Stephen Harper or even Jean Chrétien with nation-defining acts like legalizing weed, legislation on medically assisted death, handing over to the provinces. money for inexpensive child care, gender balance in cabinet. and launching a massive pandemic rescue program in just a few weeks. These heavy political acts required courage and determination and all were carried out with a minimum of agitation or scandal.

But timing is everything in politics and his stature is clearly diminishing as too many months of soul-destroying pandemic suffering sprawl out years with no end in sight.

So, smart money would bet on 2022, Trudeau’s last full year in power.

The footprints of his future walk in the snow are already there.

Showing a stark lack of inspiration to enter a fourth term which he touted as a pivotal turning point in Canadian history, his mind-numbing series of year-end media interviews showcases his talent for say nothing substantive and its usual high-octane energy seems depleted by the weight of too many pressing challenges.

In addition, he clearly crowned his preferred successor by handing Chrystia Freeland the two main positions of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance to make her the first woman elected Prime Minister of Canada.

Now, before we continue, my main prediction for 2022 if Trudeau’s retirement speculation becomes a reality is that the next Liberal leader will be a woman who is effectively elected Prime Minister if the Conservatives do not ignite one way or another.

But it won’t be Chrystia Freeland.

She’s got what it takes for the job and all, but Freeland’s public figure can be aggravatingly condescending, her caucus relationship is little better than her supposedly cool and aloof treatment of her own top officials and she acts too as if his leadership victory is a done deal.

For a more likely post-Trudeau leader, look at current Minister of National Defense Anita Anand, whose first cabinet post achieved spectacular success in procuring vaccines for all Canadians and who has continued to struggle with it. more force against the mess of military sexual misconduct in a month than the former minister. Harjit Sajjan did it in six years.

The law professor is highly regarded by Liberal MPs, commands the boardroom when big decisions are made, and is known to quietly connect with Liberal members, whose votes will eventually crown the winner.

So I’m going to limit my New Years column to just one long-term prediction – Anita Anand will be next as a Liberal leader.

As for the current one, well, if he makes tangible progress in Canada towards resisting climate change, delivers meaningful Indigenous reconciliation, and puts the economy on a healthy track, Justin Trudeau might bow out in the end. next year as a transformational prime minister who delivered far more than expected when his sunny lanes first appeared in 2015.

But if he stays too long, weary voters will plunge his poll numbers toward probable electoral defeat and he could end his reign with a forced march by his own Liberal MPs.

So why should Prime Minister Justin Trudeau seriously consider leaving? Because we are in 2022.

It is essential.

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