Adrian Wyld The Canadian Press Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has already declared his intention to run again as leader of the party in the next elections, scheduled for 2025.
The question is on everyone's lips in Ottawa these days: is Prime Minister Justin Trudeau still best placed to lead his party to victory at the end of the next election campaign?
On Thursday, active Liberal activist and former governor of the Bank of Canada Mark Carney told the Globe and Mail that he was not ruling out a future bid for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada (PLC).
All major national polls also place the Prime Minister behind Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre, who now holds a considerable lead over the Liberals.
In an interview with Duty, the federal Minister of Transport, Pablo Rodriguez, however assures that he “does not sense” any discontent towards Mr. Trudeau. He even assures that the Quebec Liberals are still behind the Prime Minister.
“There are people who look at the polls and who [are] nervous. I got past this level of nervousness a long time ago […] I think you have to trust yourself,” he firmly maintains.
Mark Carney, formerly head of the Bank of England, has long been considered among the potential contenders for leadership of the PLC – with ministers Chrystia Freeland, Mélanie Joly, Anita Anand and François-Philippe Champagne, in particular.
“I'm glad [Mark Carney] is Liberal. People like him, we want more. But, [a race for] leadership, there is none,” assures Pablo Rodriguez, also lieutenant of Quebec.
None of the contenders for the Liberal leadership seems to sufficiently convince the electorate of this stadium. Three experts consulted by Le Devoirdoubt that the current contenders will lead the party to victory in the next election.
For former Liberal strategist Jeremy Ghio, nothing excludes Mr. Trudeau from regaining momentum if he relaunch in the campaign, since he “remains an excellent campaigner“.
Wednesday, a long-time supporter of Liberal Party and former chief of staff to Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, Percy Downe, wrote in National Newswatchthat the “prudent course of action” would be for Mr. Trudeau to resign and someone else within the caucus to take the helm of the party before the next election.
Percy Downe, who is also a senator from Prince Edward Island, even suggests that the Prime Minister could make a decision on his wish to lead the party in the next election by February. “Most Liberals I've spoken to assume, given the poll results as they are, that we are weeks away from a final decision [on Trudeau's plans],” he said. – he told the Hills Times.
The Prime Minister has already declared his intention to run for leadership of the party in the next elections, scheduled for 2025.
When reporters raised the senator's position on Thursday, Trudeau simply responded, with a sneer, that he wished Mr. Downe “all the best in his work,” before heading to question period in chamber.
If he maintains this decision, it will be the fourth time in a row that the leader of the PLC has asked Canadians for a mandate. Remember that his party was elected as a minority government in the last two elections, in 2019 and 2021.
Discussions about Mr. Trudeau's future occur in the context of the PLC national convention being held in Trois-Rivières this weekend. Several Quebec federal ministers will be present to discuss Francophonie, economic development in Quebec and climate change, among other things. The Prime Minister must also deliver a speech to the 400 registered activists on Saturday evening.
The PLC is losing points in the polls across the country, except in Quebec. Pierre Poilievre's Conservatives rank third — behind the Bloc Québécois — but have been rising quietly for several weeks.
“We don't expect activists to agree with everything that we do, admitted Minister Rodriguez. At the end of the week, we will debate [several themes].”
For him, we must “fear” a rise of conservatives in any province, a rise that would harm “the fundamental rights” of Canadians.
In the event of the election of Pierre Poilievre, Mr. Trudeau would fear the collapse of his work accomplished since 2015 and the weakening of Canadian democracy.