Another in the series of Liberal debates happened on the weekend. As you might have heard, Martha Hall Findlay decided to go after Justin Trudeau on the question of privilege and class – whether someone who’s been privileged as Justin Trudeau has been can actually speak for the middle class was the premise of the question.
Quite frankly, the way it was put came out rather classless, but it was apparent Mr. Trudeau was anticipating it – as he turned it into a passionate defense of what he stands for. MHF would later give a “sorta apology” for the question – such was the blow-back on it which more or less has probably basically ended her campaign – but in a way, perhaps it has helped Liberals gauge how Justin Trudeau will respond to the inevitable Conservative negative attack ads if he were to become Liberal leader, as most anticipate. As the son of a Prime Minister many in Harper’s Conservative Party despise, and who have carried it over to the next generation, I suspect those attacks and/or attack ads will be far more vitriolic then anything Dion or Ignatieff faced. Justin has shown some indication after Saturday he can and knows how to handle those attacks.
As for the overall debate, three candidates stood out (in a positive way) for me from the weekend debate; Trudeau (who pleasantly surprised me), Marc Garneau, and Joyce Murray. The next debate is in Halifax in March; I wonder if we will still have 9 leadership candidates running, or if it will be whittled down a bit. I have a feeling it won’t be, as the slight uncertainty of how all LPC Members + the Supporters will vote is the great unknown (or the great slim hope) for those candidates on the fringe.
Postscript: I’d hope the candidates will all still answer the seven questions I submitted to them for blog rebroadcast before any drop out