While it’s going to be an interesting election for the following five weeks, Canada’s Green Party faces several challenges to return out ahead. But their leader Annamie Paul says Canadians are ready to usher in change for the country.
“They underestimate the will of individuals for change that this pandemic has provoked,” said Paul, while gearing up her campaign on the Wellesley Community Centre.
“We’re able to strike out in a recent direction,” she said amongst a flurry of cheers.
But there’s one hurdle she must overcome — or the newly minted party leader’s pomp might fizzle out.
She needs a seat in parliament, a proven fact that puts her in a tricky spot in accordance with Tim Abray, a professor in political science at Queen’s University.
“It’s an unlimited uphill battle,” he says. “I don’t envy her position. It was already going to be tough due to riding she selected to run in.”
Abray, who can also be PhD candidate studying voter behaviour, says with the continuing fighting in her own party — convincing Canadians to vote in a different way isn’t going to be easy.
“The closest analogy to that is to be starting a race with no driver,” he says. “There may be quite a bit that she really has to beat in a brief time frame.”
She must outpace newly-elected Liberal MP Marci Ien — formerly a CTV news anchor and well-known within the Toronto Centre riding.
Ien defeated her within the Toronto Centre byelection last 12 months. She was also beat out in 2019 — coming in fourth.
Paul says she’s confident Canadians want change.
“We’ve heard from many outgoing MPs from this session that it’s a culture that has been toxic. It’s a culture that has turn out to be unwelcoming and it’s a culture that concentrates on putting an excessive amount of power into the hands of too few,” she says.
“We see ourselves as being a part of the antidote to that.”
Over the past 10 months, the Green Party has been in turmoil.
There are ongoing legal battles difficult Paul’s leadership. Paul’s interim chief of staff Phil Spidle was laid off by party brass last week. And sources say the Green Party staff has been halved. They even lost an MP in Fredericton to the Liberals, Jenica Atwin.
Nevertheless, they’re all facts that Paul says are bumps on the road to victory.
“Change shouldn’t be at all times easy. Nevertheless it’s at all times value it. And so we’re going through that. But we’re a celebration that I feel unifies on the times that matter probably the most.”
Paul was flanked by her candidates running alongside her in several Ontario ridings — including Adrian Currie. He’s vying for a seat in Toronto’s Davenport riding. He says although the fighting is distracting for his or her party, that’s all it’s and Canadian’s must see through it.
“It’s been a distraction for the easy proven fact that the Green Party has one of the best plan to tackle climate change,” says Currie. “The Liberals are frightened that Annamie Paul will win Toronto Centre — and in the event that they do, there might be a domino effect across Toronto.”
All this while Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau tries to secure a majority — during a pandemic.
Political strategist with Enterprise Canada Jason Lietaer says it’s a difficult time for everybody, considering there are only 36 days until people will hit the polls.
“Day one, it’s a nerve-racking day. I believe you’re all somewhat bit frightened of where it’s going to go,” he says. “I believe all of them met their objectives in various degrees. All of them have questions going forward.
Because it stands, Paul will only campaign in her riding of Toronto Centre to try to solidify a seat. But with several roadblocks along the way in which.