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America Is Undergoing Seismic Changes. Its Politics? Hardly. – The New York Times

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The country is recovering from a pandemic and an economic crisis, and its former president is in legal and financial peril. But no political realignment appears to be at hand.

In another age, the events of this season would have been nearly certain to produce a major shift in American politics — or at least a meaningful, discernible one.

Over a period of weeks, the coronavirus death rate plunged and the country considerably eased public health restrictions. President Biden announced a bipartisan deal late last month to spend hundreds of billions of dollars rebuilding the country’s worn infrastructure — the most significant aisle-crossing legislative agreement in a generation, if it holds together. The Congressional Budget Office estimated on Thursday that the economy was on track to regain all of the jobs it lost during the pandemic by the middle of 2022.

And in a blow to Mr. Biden’s fractious opposition, Donald J. Trump — the dominant figure in Republican politics — faced an embarrassing legal setback just as he was resuming a schedule of campaign-style events. The Manhattan district attorney’s office charged his company, the Trump Organization, and its chief financial officer with “sweeping and audacious” financial crimes.

Not long ago, such a sequence of developments might have tested the partisan boundaries of American politics, startling voters into reconsidering their assumptions about the current president, his predecessor, the two major parties and what government can do for the American people.

These days, it is hard to imagine that such a political turning point is at hand.

“I think we’re open to small moves; I’m not sure we’re open to big moves,” said Mark Mellman, a Democratic pollster. “Partisanship has made our system so sclerotic that it isn’t very responsive to real changes in the real world.”

Amid the mounting drama of the early summer, a moment of truth appears imminent. It is one that will reveal whether the American electorate is still capable of large-scale shifts in opinion, or whether the country is essentially locked into a schism for the foreseeable future, with roughly 53 percent of Americans on one side and 47 percent on the other.

Mr. Biden’s job approval has been steady in the mid-50s for most of the year, as his administration has pushed a shots-and-checks message about beating the virus and reviving the economy. His numbers are weaker on subjects like immigration and crime; Republicans have focused their criticism on those areas accordingly.

This weekend, the president and his allies have mounted something of a celebratory tour for the Fourth of July: Mr. Biden headed to Michigan, one of the vital swing states that made him president, while Vice President Kamala Harris traveled to Las Vegas to mark a revival of the nation’s communal life.

On Friday, Mr. Biden stopped just short of declaring that happy days are here again, but he eagerly brandished the latest employment report showing that the economy added 850,000 jobs in June.

“The last time the economy grew at this rate was in 1984, and Ronald Reagan was telling us it’s morning in America,” Mr. Biden said. “Well, it’s getting close to afternoon here. The sun is coming out.”

Yet there is little confidence in either party that voters are about to swing behind Mr. Biden and his allies en masse, no matter how many events appear to align in his favor.

Democratic strategists see that as no fault of Mr. Biden’s, but merely the frustrating reality of political competition these days: The president — any president — might be able to chip away at voters’ skepticism of his party or their cynicism about Washington, but he cannot engineer a broad realignment in the public mood.

Mr. Mellman said the country’s political divide currently favored Mr. Biden and his party, with a small but stable majority of voters positively disposed toward the president. But even significant governing achievements — containing the coronavirus, passing a major infrastructure bill — may yield only minute adjustments in the electorate, he said.

“Getting a bipartisan bill passed, in the past, would have been a game changer,” Mr. Mellman said. “Will it be in this environment? I have my doubts.”

Russ Schriefer, a Republican strategist, offered an even blunter assessment of the chances for real movement in the electorate. He said that the receding of the pandemic had helped voters feel better about the direction the country is moving in — “the Covid reopening certainly helps with the right-track numbers” — but that he saw no evidence that it was changing the way they thought about their preferences between the parties.

“I don’t think anything has particularly changed,” Mr. Schriefer said. “If anything, since November people have retreated further and further back into their own corners.”

Maddie McGarvey for The New York Times

American voters’ stubborn resistance to external events is no great surprise, of course, to anyone who lived through the 2020 election. Last year, Mr. Trump presided over an out-of-control pandemic that killed hundreds of thousands of people and caused the American economy to collapse. He humiliated the nation’s top public health officials and ridiculed basic safety measures like mask wearing; threatened to crush mass demonstrations with military force; outlined no agenda for his second term; and delivered one of the most self-destructive debate performances of any presidential candidate in modern history.

Mr. Trump still won 47 percent of the vote and carried 25 states. The trench lines of identity-based grievance he spent five years digging and deepening — pitting rural voters against urban ones, working-class voters against voters with college degrees, white voters against everybody else — saved him from an overwhelming repudiation.

A Pew Research Center study of the 2020 election results released this past week showed exactly what scale of voter movement is possible in the political climate of the Trump era and its immediate aftermath.

The electorate is not entirely frozen, but each little shift in one party’s favor seems offset by another small one in the opposite direction. Mr. Trump improved his performance with women and Hispanic voters compared with the 2016 election, while Mr. Biden expanded his party’s support among moderate constituencies like male voters and military veterans.

The forces that made Mr. Trump a resilient foe in 2020 may now shield him from the kind of exile that might normally be inflicted on a toppled former president enveloped in criminal investigations and facing the prospect of financial ruin. Polls show that Mr. Trump has persuaded most of his party’s base to believe a catalog of outlandish lies about the 2020 election; encouraging his admirers to ignore his legal problems is an old trick by comparison.

The divisions Mr. Trump carved into the electoral map are still apparent in other ways, too: Even as the country reopens and approaches the point of declaring victory over the coronavirus, the states lagging furthest behind in their vaccination campaigns are nearly all strongholds of the G.O.P. While Mr. Trump has encouraged his supporters to get vaccinated, his contempt for public health authorities and the culture of vaccine skepticism in the right-wing media has hindered easy progress.

Yet the social fissures that have made Mr. Trump such a durable figure have also cemented Mr. Biden as the head of a majority coalition with broad dominance of the country’s most populous areas. The Democrats do not have an overwhelming electoral majority — and certainly not a majority that can count on overcoming congressional gerrymandering, the red-state bias of the Senate and the traditional advantage for the opposition party in midterm elections — but they have a majority all the same.

And if Mr. Biden’s approach up to this point has been good enough to keep roughly 53 percent of the country solidly with him, it might not take a major political breakthrough — let alone a season of them — to reinforce that coalition by winning over just a small slice of doubters or critics. There are strategists in Mr. Biden’s coalition who hope to do considerably more than that, either by maneuvering the Democratic Party more decisively toward the political center or by competing more assertively with Republicans on themes of economic populism (or perhaps through some combination of the two).

Mr. Biden’s aides have already briefed congressional Democrats several times on their plans to lean hard into promoting the economic recovery as the governing party’s signature achievement — one they hope to reinforce further with a victory on infrastructure.

Faiz Shakir, who managed Senator Bernie Sanders’s 2020 presidential campaign, said Democrats did not need to worry about making deep inroads into Mr. Trump’s base. But if Mr. Biden and his party managed to reclaim a sliver of the working-class community that had recently shifted right, he said, it would make them markedly stronger for 2022 and beyond.

“All you need to focus on is a 5 percent strategy,” Mr. Shakir said. “What 5 percent of this base do you think you can attract back?”

But Mr. Shakir warned that Democrats should not underestimate the passion that Mr. Trump’s party would bring to that fight, or the endurance of the fault lines that he had used to reorganize American politics.

“He has animated people around those social and racial, cultural, cleavages,” Mr. Shakir said of Mr. Trump. “That keeps people enthused. It’s sad but it is the case that that is going on.”

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Why the global inflation problem is bigger than US politics – The Hill

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Inflation may be the focus of a midterm cycle political blame game, but economists caution the problem — and the most effective solutions — are global. 

Rising prices were a focus of this week’s meeting of the Group of Seven (G-7) major economies. 

The White House said Tuesday it is investing $760 million to combat the effects of high food, fuel and fertilizer prices, and the European Council said the war in Ukraine is leading to steep price increases and that the G-7 needs to “assist the global economy.” 

“We are united and determined to strongly support Ukraine in producing and exporting grain, oil, and other agricultural products and we will foster coordinated initiatives that promote global food security and address the causes of the evolving global food crisis,” the council said.  

In the U.S., inflation stands at a 40-year high of 8.6 percent, weighing on personal expenses and effectively making people poorer.  

Around the world, it is sparking protest movements, driven by a soaring cost of living felt in the price of goods like food and gasoline. 

In the United Kingdom, where inflation is higher than it is in the U.S. — above 9 percent — the biggest rail strike in 30 years has disrupted travel around the country and seen tens of thousands of workers walk off the job demanding more pay. There are also concerns that the rail strike could be the first of many in the country. 

U.K. rail union members “are leading the way for all workers in this country who are sick and tired of having their pay and conditions slashed by a mixture of big business profits and government policy,” union head Mick Lynch said in a statement last week, adding that his group was seeking a “decent pay rise.” 

In South Korea, where inflation surpassed 5 percent for the first time in more than a decade, truckers reached a deal with the government earlier this month after a weeklong strike to get a minimum pay guarantee. This led to production cuts by South Korean steel producer POSCO as well as automaker Hyundai, which said sales are facing “unfavorable external environments.” 

Inflation has also hit a decades-high 5.2 percent in France, where there are concerns over whether there will be a resurgence of the Gilets Jaunes, or Yellow Vest, grassroots protest movement this fall. 

Over the past few months, economic- and inflation-related protests have been reported in India, Ecuador, Indonesia, Ireland, Tunisia, Sri Lanka and Peru, where the government imposed a curfew and enacted various emergency measures after demonstrations turned violent earlier this year. 

“Inflation is not just in the U.S. or in Europe, but it’s also in developing countries — it’s almost everywhere,” Hamid Rashid, head of the global economic monitoring branch of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, said in an interview. 

This ubiquity means that workers in numerous countries with varying political systems and social dynamics are pushing in the same direction, putting pressure on global labor markets that many central banks are hoping to see loosen.  

In the U.S., having a looser labor market, or slightly higher unemployment, would take some of the pressure off companies to keep raising their prices in order to turn a profit for their investors, some economists argue.  

But with more than 11 million open jobs and unemployment levels in the U.S. at 3.6 percent — which is still not as low as the pre-pandemic level of 3.5 percent — a looser labor market may just not be in the cards.  

This means that the “supply-side interventions” — measures aimed at specific industries and pipeline bottlenecks, such as those in the shipping industry — that some economists are recommending to fight inflation may not be as effective as policymakers in the U.S. or around the world hope.  

“When we think of the supply side, we tend to focus on supply chains. Supply chains are part of the supply side, but the most important element of the supply side is the labor supply,” Rashid said. “There are a lot of uncertainties in the labor supply, and that compounds a lot of supply chain issues, from packaging to transportation to warehouses to port clearance. Don’t underestimate the role that labor supply plays in most economies.”  

With the tight job market in the U.S. and workers able to demand higher pay both here and in other countries, the global supply side of the economy may take a while to sync up.   

That’s why economists are seeing increased international cooperation as an important additional measure in the fight against inflation. This cooperation can take many forms, including coordinated central bank policies, conforming regulatory frameworks and supply chain improvements.  

One unexpected source of cooperation, at least among Western powers, has been the war in Ukraine, which economists note has brought the G-7 much closer together.   

“Why do we have this cooperation happening right now? First, recognize really it’s Western cooperation. The G-7 is really leading this,” Abraham Newman, a professor in the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, said during an online event on economic globalization hosted by the Brookings Institution. “Within the G-7, you just see this complete belief that this is a legitimate exercise.” 

Despite the global nature of inflation, the war of words between Democrats and Republicans over who is to blame for the high cost of living rages on. 

“The White House and congressional Democrats are in denial about how their policies fueled inflation,” House Republicans on the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee said in a statement Monday, referring to the Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion stimulus package. 

A study from the San Francisco Federal Reserve found in March that direct fiscal stimulus related to the pandemic — which went out under both the Trump and Biden administrations — “may have contributed to about 3 percentage points of the rise in U.S. inflation through the end of 2021.”  

Democrats, meanwhile, have been focusing on corporate price gouging and market concentration in the private sector as drivers of inflation. President Biden earlier this month railed against oil companies for profiting while gas prices soared. 

And Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) introduced a bill in March that would tax windfall profits of corporations, a similar measure to ones enacted during the 20th century in times of war. 

“The American people are sick and tired of the unprecedented corporate greed that exists all over this country. They are sick and tired of being ripped-off by corporations making record-breaking profits while working families are forced to pay outrageously high prices for gas, rent, food, and prescription drugs,” Sanders said.   

Regardless of whether inflation is a global issue, Americans expect action on the inflation front and are likely to express that expectation at the polls in November.  

A NewsNation-DDHQ poll released last week found 97 percent of U.S. voters are very or somewhat concerned about inflation and inflation ranks as the top issue for 72 percent.

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Politics Briefing: B.C. Premier John Horgan announces he will be stepping down – The Globe and Mail

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Hello,

John Horgan has announced his exit as British Columbia premier.

At a news conference in Vancouver, one of Canada’s highest-profile New Democrats said Tuesday afternoon that he will be standing down as leader of the British Columbia New Democrats, and has asked the party to organize a leadership convention for the fall.

Mr. Horgan, who has been treated for throat cancer and said he is now cancer free after 35 treatments, said his health is good but his energy flags as the days go by.

“There has been endless speculation as a result of my recent battle with cancer about what my plans would be. I want to put the speculation to rest so we can get back to what really matters, and that’s the issues before British Columbians,” he said.

Mr. Horgan, a Vancouver Island member of the legislature since 2005, has been premier since 2017 after forming a minority government with support from the BC Greens, and ending 16 years of BC Liberal government.

He led the party to a majority government in the 2020 election. Although critical of the federal government on issues such as health-care funding, the 62-year-old has been supportive of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in other areas.

Mr. Horgan is chair of the Council of the Federation, and was scheduled to host a gathering of Canada’s premiers and territorial leaders in Victoria early next month. He said he remains committed to that event and the issues of importance to the leaders.

The Angus Reid Institute measured Mr. Horgan’s popularity with other premiers and territorial leaders earlier this month. Of Mr. Horgan they said, “British Columbia Premier John Horgan’s approval continues a downward trend. Just under half of British Columbians approve of Horgan, the lowest approval measured for the BC NDP leader since before the onset of the pandemic in 2020.” Details here.

This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Ian Bailey. It is available exclusively to our digital subscribers. If you’re reading this on the web, subscribers can sign up for the Politics newsletter and more than 20 others on our newsletter signup page. Have any feedback? Let us know what you think.

TODAY’S HEADLINES

JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TURNS OVER ADDITIONAL RCMP FILES IN N.S. MASS KILLING – The federal Justice Department said Tuesday that it had turned over a further 17 pages of RCMP investigative files to the public inquiry into the April, 2020, mass killing of 22 people in Nova Scotia. Department spokesman Ian McLeod said another three pages have been withheld as lawyers determine if they should be disclosed to the Mass Casualty Commission, which is investigating the worst mass shooting in Canadian history. Story here.

Reporter’s Comment, Ottawa Bureau Chief Robert Fife: “The fact that the Justice department withheld documents and did not bother to inform the commission should be taken seriously. The opposition parties are right to ask Justice Minister David Lametti and officials to appear before the House of Commons public safety and national intelligence committee next month to explain why this happened.”

SCOTIABANK SUSPENDS SPONSORSHIP TIES WITH HOCKEY CANADA – Scotiabank is suspending its sponsorship of Hockey Canada after the national sport organization paid an undisclosed sum last month to settle allegations that eight Canadian Hockey League players sexually assaulted a young woman after a Hockey Canada Foundation gala in June, 2018. Story here.

FEDS MISSING $23.4B IN UNCOLLECTED TAXES – The federal government is missing out on up to $23.4-billion a year in uncollected taxes, according to the Canada Revenue Agency’s most detailed effort to date to estimate Canada’s tax gap. Story here.

LICH HAS BEEN ARRESTED – A lawyer for “Freedom Convoy” organizer Tamara Lich says the Alberta woman has been arrested. Story here.

TRUDEAU DEFENDS MILITARY SPENDING – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is defending Canadian military spending as a new report released ahead of a major NATO meeting this week shows Canada heading in the wrong direction. Story here.

STANDING GRANTED IN EMERGENCIES ACT INQUIRY – The commissioner of the inquiry examining Ottawa’s use of the Emergencies Act to bring an end to the “Freedom Convoy” protest in February has granted standing to the organizers, police and representatives of all three levels of government. Story here.

ONTARIO NDP NAMING INTERIM LEADER – Ontario’s NDP was set to name an interim leader Tuesday to replace Andrea Horwath and the party is expected to select a longtime Toronto caucus member. Story here.

CONSERVATIVE LEADERSHIP RACE

CAMPAIGN TRAIL – Scott Aitchison is in Ontario. Roman Baber is hosting a meet and greet in Mississauga. Patrick Brown is in Brampton. Jean Charest is in Calgary. Pierre Poilievre is in Ottawa. There is no word on the campaign whereabouts of Leslyn Lewis.

PARTY CHANGE INEVITABLE: MACKAY – Elmer MacKay, a veteran cabinet minister under Brian Mulroney, says the evolution of the Conservative Party is an inevitability that some critical veteran party members should accept. He also said he is supporting Pierre Poilievre for the leadership. Story here.

On Tuesday, Elmer MacKay’s son, former Stephen Harper cabinet minister Peter MacKay, said in a statement that he is not making any endorsements in the Conservative leadership race, and is supportive of all of the six candidates. He said his father is entitled to his own choices. But he added, “I honestly don’t feel former leaders should weigh in too heavily in these critically important decisions that remain in the hands of the broader membership. That has been the tradition in our party for a long time [with] a few notable exceptions.”

THIS AND THAT

The House of Commons is not sitting again until Sept. 19. The Senate is to resume sitting on Sept. 20

MURRAY HAS COVID-19 – Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray has tested positive for COVID-19 while attending a UN fisheries conference in Portugal. “I’m feeling fine and I’ll be isolating in my hotel room, following public health guidance,” Ms. Murray wrote in a tweet. She offered thanks to the Canadian Embassy team and fisheries department staff for continuing to ensure a Canadian presence at the conference.

IEN IN TORONTO -Women’s Minister Marci Ien made a funding announcement in Toronto supporting sexual and reproductive health services for LGBTQ communities across Canada.

THE DECIBEL

Tuesday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast looks into the controversy over Hockey Canada’s handling of a civil lawsuit filed by a women who alleges she was sexually assaulted by eight Canadian Hockey League players in 2018. The public did not hear about this until 2022, after TSN broke the news that Hockey Canada settled a civil lawsuit with the woman. Now the government has cut off funding for the national organization until more details of their investigation are provided to a parliamentary committee. Taylor McKee , an assistant professor of sports management at Brock University, talks about how hockey has built a culture of secrecy and what that means for a sport deeply connected to Canadian identity. The Decibel is here.

PRIME MINISTER’S DAY

In Elmau, Germany, the Prime Minister, attending the G7 summit, held private meetings and met with Italy’s Prime Minister Mario Draghi, attended the G7 Working Session entitled Shaping International Cooperation: Multilateral and Digital Order/G20, and held a media availability. The Prime Minister was then scheduled to depart for Madrid, Spain, and participate in the official NATO leaders’ arrivals. The Prime Minister was then scheduled to participate in the official family photo with Their Royal Highnesses the King and Queen of Spain and NATO leaders and to attend a dinner they hosted.

LEADERS

Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet will be in the Quebec City region to meet with his local MPs, Caroline Desbiens and Julie Vignola, and to hold private meetings.

No schedules released for other party leaders.

PUBLIC OPINION

SWEARING ALLEGIANCE OATH TO QUEEN – Most people in Canada do not think people should have to swear an Oath of Allegiance to the Queen, according to a poll ahead of Canada Day. Story here.

OPINION

Gary Mason (The Globe and Mail) on whether the Conservatives are heading for a cataclysmic rupture: There will be many Conservative MPs and party supporters who will dismiss the warnings of Ms. LeBreton, Ms. Rempel Garner and Mr. O’Toole as the bleatings of disgruntled losers, a small rump that represents the out-of-touch moderate old guard. Anyone who holds that view is deeply misguided. Mr. Poilievre is taking the Conservatives in a radically different direction, one in which it has never been. It is a deeply divisive and corrosive path as well, one along which not all party members and elected representatives will be comfortable travelling. When the party ruptures, as it surely will, Mr. Poilievre can’t say he wasn’t warned.”

André Picard (The Globe and Mail) on why legislating abortion access in Canada would be a mistake: “Once you have a law, even one that guarantees access to abortion and other reproductive health services, it can serve as a platform for opponents to launch attacks, and protections can be whittled down with restrictions on who has access, when and how. These issues are summed up brilliantly by the National Association of Women and the Law and Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights in its response to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.”

David Moscrop (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on America’s social contract with its citizens lying in tatters: Just this month, decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court on abortion, gun control and Miranda rights, for instance, will make the country far less safe and far less just. In the wake of the decision to leave abortion laws up to the states, several states immediately banned it; more will follow. Former vice-president Mike Pence called for a national ban. This is the stuff of theocracy. The court’s decision not only limits the rights of people who may become pregnant, it will lead to deaths. It is a fundamental violation of the right to life. So is the lack of adequate gun control measures in a country where more than 45,000 people were killed by guns in 2020. A recent effort to impose some control resulted in a bipartisan bill – shocking, of itself – but it leaves much to be desired. If the country continues on its current course of decline, the U.S. will face violent revolution or oblivion – maybe even both.”

Jad Saliba and Neil Desai (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how the new cybersecurity bill needs to be backed by resources: “Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino recently tabled legislation that would mandate that businesses in four federally-regulated industries report cyberbreaches. It makes sense for the government to try to tackle this growing global challenge given that it’s estimated that an attack occurs ever 11 seconds and the cost of cybercrime to the global economy will top US$10.5 trillion annually by 2025. However, without wider applicability and a thoughtful implementation strategy that includes training and technology solutions for police agencies, the legislation may do little to actually protect Canadians, especially the most vulnerable among us.”

Murray Mandryk (Regina Leader-Post) on how overcoming dwindling NDP support will be the first test of the party’s new leader:Much of the not-so-great 2022 Saskatchewan NDP leadership race centred around whether this party wants to be a broad-based, inclusive government-in-waiting or something more akin to a special-interest lobby group. The frightening reality for new leader Carla Beck is that the NDP’s voting numbers suggest it’s more the latter than the former. Beck took the Saskatchewan NDP leadership on Sunday with 3,244 votes (or 68.5 per cent of the mere 4,741 total ballots cast) compared with 1,492 votes (31.5 per cent) for Kaitlyn Harvey. Those 4,741 ballots represented 65 per cent of the announced 7,294 NDP membership. Think about those numbers in the context of NDP bravado purporting to having just selected the next Saskatchewan premier.”

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B.C. Premier John Horgan to resign in the fall after leadership review

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VANCOUVER — British Columbia Premier John Horgan says he’ll resign as leader in the fall after the New Democrats hold a leadership convention because a second bout with cancer has left him with little energy for a job that’s been the thrill of his life.

“I wish I had the energy to do more, but I don’t,” he told a news conference Tuesday.

Horgan, 62, announced last November that he was diagnosed with throat cancer after being diagnosed with bladder cancer in his 40s.

He said that while he is now free of cancer following 35 radiation treatments, he will not seek re-election because he’s not able to make another six-year commitment to the job.

“I get tired and I come home and I fall asleep,” he said, adding he feels at peace about the timing of his “very difficult decision.”

Horgan said he and his wife Ellie, “the love of my life,” recently spent about 10 days in his constituency on the west coast of Vancouver Island reflecting on what they wanted to do for the rest of their lives.

The premier said he asked that question of himself before posing it to his cabinet colleagues at a retreat last week and concluded he couldn’t continue on as leader.

“There has been endless speculation as a result of my recent battle with cancer about what my plans would be. I want to put the speculation to rest so we can get back to what really matters, and those are the issues before British Columbia,” Horgan said.

Horgan said he will continue to work toward his goals to represent British Columbians in the next few months, including as leader of the Council of the Federation as he hosts his counterparts at a meeting next month in Victoria.

He said the No. 1 issue on the table is getting a commitment from the federal government to work with provinces to resolve the crisis in health care.

“I fully intend to carry on that battle to make the federal government stand up for the commitments they made to all of us and convene a meeting so that we can fix the most important social program, in fact, the most important program in Canada.”

Horgan has led the NDP since being acclaimed as leader in 2014 following the party’s defeat in the 2013 election.

In 2017, he formed a minority government after negotiating a so-called confidence and supply agreement with the Green Party, which held the balance of power.

Horgan called a snap election last October during the pandemic and won a majority government, taking 55 of the 87 seats in the legislature.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau posted a message to Horgan on Twitter, thanking the premier for his many years of public service, for his “ambitious” climate action as well as his initiatives on affordable child care and COVID-19.

“Wishing you all the best, John,” Trudeau said.

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said it’s no secret that he and Horgan “come from different political stripes.”

“But I’ve appreciated working with him greatly at the Council of (the) Federation table when I was chair a few years ago and this past year, now with him being chair. He’s served as an excellent chair. He’s a very, very capable and competent politician and I would say a friend in many cases as well.”

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said it had been a real pleasure to work constructively with Horgan on a range of issues.

“We come from different political traditions, but have always worked to find common ground.”

Sonia Furstenau, leader of B.C.’s Green Party, said Horgan led the government during a series of overlapping crises.

“Although we have not always agreed on policy, together our two parties created an era of unprecedented cross-party co-operation,” she said in a written statement, adding the legacy of their confidence and supply agreement lives on as a model for a similar deal between the federal New Democratic and Liberal parties.

“I sincerely hope that the premier enjoys health, rest and time spent with his family,” Furstenau said.

A date for the leadership convention has not yet been set.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 28, 2022.

 

Camille Bains, The Canadian Press

 

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