OTTAWA – New Democrat leaders from across the country, including the premiers of Manitoba and Nova Scotia, will be in Ottawa today for talks hosted by federal NDP Leader Tom Mulcair.
Nine provincial and territorial NDP leaders are confirmed to attend an afternoon of closed-door discussions on Parliament Hill that will focus largely on economic issues.
Interprovincial relations, jobs, and natural resources and energy policy are all on the agenda for the roughly three-hour meeting, which will be followed by a working dinner at Stornoway, the official residence of the Opposition leader.
Mulcair has been attempting to bolster his party’s economic credentials as the federal NDP positions itself for a run at government in 2015, when Canadians are next expected to go to the polls.
By aligning himself with provincial NDP governments, which have a proven track record, Mulcair may be hoping to break the mould of the federal New Democrats as a perennial protest party.
The meeting also contrasts with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s reticence toward mass meetings with his provincial counterparts.
According to a list released by Mulcair’s office, Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger and Nova Scotia Premier Darrell Dexter, Adrian Dix of British Columbia and Andrea Horwath of Ontario are among the provincial NDP leaders who will attend.
Selinger “will share Manitoba’s approach to governing in uncertain times, moving forward by focusing on the things that matter most to families,” said his spokesman Matt Williamson in an email.