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NDP kicks off policy convention that Mulcair describes as a ‘critical moment’


 

TTAWA – The New Democrats kick off a policy convention today they say will retool their party’s message and policies to better suit a government in waiting.

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair is billing his party’s event as a critical moment that will give New Democrats the vision and determination to carry them through to the next election.

Party members will vote on a change that’s been haunting conventions since 2009 — modernizing the preamble of the party’s constitution.

A panel has come up with a more moderate statement that drops numerous references to “socialism” and “socialist,” as well as the document’s anti-free market language.

Mulcair says the party will continue to fight for labour rights, but will also try to come up with a vision on how to have a sustained economy.

Anne McGrath, former chief of staff to late NDP leader Jack Layton, said all social democratic parties come to a point where they need to modernize and consider how they’re perceived by the public.

“It’s not going to be just about what resolutions get adopted, it’s going to be about how we actually conduct debates, and what the consciousness is of the people that are there about the importance of presenting the party as a replacement for this government,” said McGrath, now managing director of Ensight Canada.

The NDP’s discussion mirrors to some extent the debate Britain’s Labour Party had at a convention in 1994, with new leader Tony Blair leading the charge for the party to abandon a constitutional clause that committed to “social ownership.”

Longtime NDP observer David McGrane, a political science professor at the University of Saskatchewan, said he’ll be looking for some of the same trends inside the NDP as with Blair’s New Labour party — a moment where the party membership accepts the need to become moderate.

“There has been a culture change within the NDP itself, and it’s matured in a lot of ways … if the vast majority of delegates are onside with this, that shows a sort of culture change,” McGrane said.

“They’re accepting a modernization, but also a professionalization of the party, the idea that the party needs to have a good marketing skills, and they start with putting together a good preamble — one’s that quite wishy-washy, actually.”


 
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NDP kicks off policy convention that Mulcair describes as a ‘critical moment’

  1. A panel has come up with a more moderate statement that drops numerous
    references to “socialism” and “socialist,” as well as the document’s
    anti-free market language.

    You can put lipstick on a pig, but………………..it’s still a pig.

    • Unlike a certain governing party whose members act like sheep and are easily cowed by its top dog.

        • Ha, back! If you think Kathleen Wynne cows anybody, you must be some kind of chicken.

          • You never quite got zoology or biology ………..to busy licking yourself instead of paying attention in class………..silly mongrel.

          • Yabbut I’ve got dogged determination

          • Touche

  2. Now if the NDP would only drop their formal ties with labour unions …

  3. Hope they keep the higher corporate taxes, at least for finance and petro/coal.

    They could shift to things like higher loan loss reserves, shift to recyclable thermoplastics manufacturing R+D and product subsidies (recyclable auto parts for car parts and wind turbines should be easier than for higher materials science applications which might be harder to recycle)…the energy sector should really be picking lithium or nickel batteries or B.Gate’s metal layered utility scale battery; different elements.
    I’m learning subsidizing the poor sometimes subsidizes addiction (rather than controlled consumption) and that this causes expensive crime and ruins the normal ladder of sane non-junkie upward mobility in cities that otherwise have a good work ethic.

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