Why he’s running

by Aaron Wherry

An email Justin Trudeau sent to supporters last night.

Friend –

It has been a week already since I was in Papineau, surrounded by family, friends and supporters, to announce my candidacy to become the next leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.

In the days that followed, I travelled to Calgary, then to Richmond, Mississauga, Dieppe and home to Sophie and the kids for Thanksgiving as a family.

I want to let you know what I saw over the course of this extraordinary week– and why I’m in this race.

It is inspiring to look out across a crowd of Canadians who care deeply about our country.

You feel an incredible energy and optimism, a powerful mix of promise and possibility. You see it in Canadians from every walk of life, from every corner of our country and the world. You hear it from people who have been volunteering on election campaigns since their school days, and from those who have never set foot in a political meeting before in their lives.

Young and old, French and English, urban and rural, and from coast to coast to coast, we share the same, simple belief that built this magnificent country: that together we can create a better life for one another, and a better Canada for our kids.

I’m running because I hope to share that vision with a new generation of leaders. I want to lead the Liberal Party of Canada because I believe that citizenship demands service — and there is no higher form than awakening in others a passion to serve.

And so if there is one thing that I hope to accomplish, between now and next April, it is this: to bring young Canadians back into our politics, so that we give the “leaders of tomorrow” the chance to be what they have always been — the leaders of today.

That’s how we’ll ensure that the priorities of our government reflect the demands of our future. We can meet our greatest challenges — creating jobs and prosperity, protecting our environment, making education accessible and opportunity equal — but only if we harness the full potential of our people.

That’s the Canada we can build together — where no one’s talents are left to languish, and no Canadian gets pushed to the margins or left out in the cold.

The positive message we’re bringing, that middle class success means Canada’s success, is being welcomed by Liberals across the country.

This campaign is not about passing the torch, but about kindling a new flame; not about renewing what was, but about building anew. It’s about being part of the change.

We need the courage to discard old dogma and the pretensions of the past. It won’t be easy. Real change never is. But with new energy, new ideas, and new boldness, we’ll succeed — and, above all, we’ll succeed together.

I hope you’ll encourage your friends and family to join the conversation about our country’s future.

Visit Justin.ca for information on how to sign up to become a supporter, receive updates, donate and volunteer.

We have an incredible opportunity in the next six months to bring new ideas and new people into our party and our public life.

We are just getting started. Join us.

Justin

P.S.: Will you share this message, by forwarding this email? JT.




Browse

Why he’s running

  1. Junior should stick to delivering his speeches in person and on video. When you’re not distracted by his deep blue eyes and amazing hair, he just comes off sounding hallow.

    • er…it’s hollow; but with you one can never be entirely sure.

      • ahmen!

      • Hallow is a combination of hollow and halo…

  2. He knows he’s running for leadership of the Liberals,doesn’t he?

    • Care to expand that thought a bit? :-)

      [edit: fixed my typo]

      • “We need the courage to discard old dogma and the pretensions of the past. It won’t be easy. Real change never is. But with new energy, new ideas, and new boldness, we’ll succeed — and, above all, we’ll succeed together.”

        If he was running for the Greens or Marxists, that might make sense. But if any party symbolizes the ‘pretensions of the past’, surely it’s the Libs. They have unfailingly followed Chretien down the path of basking in the glow of Pearson and Trudeau Sr. without a shred of the commitment or the daring that would entitle them to claim that lineage in a meaningful way. They’re the political equivalent of a middle class college kid wearing a Che Guevara T-shirt.

        Never mind the social and political obstacles , never mind the vacuous Obamaesque “change” poetry… if there is a party that could take a stab at remaking our nation in a way that even came close to Trudeau Jr’s lofty goals, it sure ain’t the Libs.

        And for the record, I admire many of the Liberal MPs greatly – they probably have the strongest caucus in Parliament by many measures. But the party itself has shown no sign of doing anything more than gathering round the campfire for a stirring singalong of “Glory Days”.

        • Don’t hold back!! ;-)

          Don’t disagree, I suppose, but also not sure what the real consequences of true renewal or lack thereof will be: voters are a funny bunch.

          Interesting to witness events as they unfold.

          • I think there’s still room for the Liberals to appeal to federalist, soft-socialist voters. I’m not sure how many of those exist any more, but it’s pretty much the only territory left open between the Cons and NDP. But whatever they become, the party has to become that from the grassroots, not via a messiah leader. That takes work, sacrifice of control by party elites, and (usually) building from one or two strong regions first. I certainly agree with you that it’s interesting to watch all of this, but I despair we’ll be stuck with the relatively unopposed brutes in charge for some time.

          • Are there any lessons that the LPC could learn from today’s CPC? I suppose the merger was a major factor in the return of the right, and it seems pretty clear that neither the LPC or NDP are motivated enough to go down that road, so that “option” is not available.

            Setting that aside, would you say that the CPC actually went through some serious renewal somewhere in the last 20 years or so? Did their party elite sacrifice control? (If they did, have they reclaimed control?)

            I’m asking because even though I hear that drumbeat about renewal, and how a party can’t just sit around and wait for the keys to government to be handed to them, none of that jives with the other canard: opposing parties don’t win elections, governments loose elections. Sure, that might be a risky strategy, but still…….

  3. Justin is leaving out a lot of people, and using old categories.

    “Young and old”. What about the rest of us? You know, the ones who pay the bills.

    “French and English”. What about the majority of the rest of us, who are neither French, nor English. No explicit recognition of the emerging multicultural and multiregional identities of the country. He’s talking in Quebec nationalist categories. The country has moved beyond “French and English”.

    “Urban and rural”. Does he realize that Harper’s base us suburban?

    If he continues to use those terms and those categories, of the past, I think the Liberal Party is toast.

    No new thinking here. No new flame. No renewal. No building anew.

    • Try to keep up. The guy has definitely got a following in multicultural circles – did you miss coverage of the events in Calgary/Vancouver/Mississauga? Did you close your eyes when he mentioned the “middle class” ?
      You don’t like him – fine, no problem. But at least look at him objectively if you’re going to parse his statements. This kind of petty nit picking is a sad effort for you.

      “Citizenship demands service”…banal if you like. But who could possibly disagree with the sentiment? Dumb question…obviously lots of partisans will find a way to.

  4. I have only one question for Mr. Trudeau: what is he talking about? I have no clue whatsoever as to what he plans to do if he becomes Liberal leader or Prime Minister. This letter is the exact opposite of new thinking; it could have been written in 1950, 1980, or today, by pretty much any party.
    And what’s with the French/English stuff? Are we still talking about that?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *