The Liberals are likely laughing and sipping champagne as chaos engulfs the Conservatives. But they may not be laughing for long.
There’s no doubt that the Conservatives are going to feel some short-term pain from Maxime Bernier’s exit from the Conservative Party of Canada.
He will likely draw away some fundraising, he will take some votes (possibly many many votes) from the Conservative Party, and he will bring up topics that the leadership of the Conservative Party would rather not discuss.
In the next few months, the Conservatives will struggle to manage this new situation, and Bernier’s ability to connect with the Conservative base as well as his strong ability to fundraise and get media attention will likely build his potential new party into an organization capable of gaining seats.
At this point, the Liberals probably think Christmas just arrived early – and Justin Trudeau had a huge smile on his face as he avoided commenting on Bernier’s move.
But, Bernier’s move could be something the Liberals come to rue, and Conservatives could see long-term benefits from it.
On issues like Supply Management, immigration, and Canadian identity, more than half of Canadians hold a Conservative viewpoint.
For example, polls have shown weak support for supply management, views on immigration that are often more conservative than some other western countries, and most recently – massive opposition to Justin Trudeau’s plan to spike immigration levels.
Currently however, no party is advocating for those viewpoints.
So why hasn’t the current Conservative Party taken similar positions?
Because they’re afraid.
Andrew Scheer is a pretty Conservative person. As much as he gets some rightful criticism for not being tougher, he’s not a secret Liberal plotting to impose Trudeau’s agenda.
He’s simply afraid of challenging the false-consensus imposed by the elites, and as a result he waters down his views as much as possible and lets Trudeau direct the agenda.
It’s similar to the problem Stephen Harper faced (even in government), as even after about a decade in power, most of what Harper did was undone within a year by Justin Trudeau’s horrendous government.
The issue is that those who push the false-consensus – which includes almost the entire media and political class – have successfully demonized mainstream conservative positions held by the majority of Canadians.
So, even when Conservatives hold power, they end up just slowing down disastrous Liberal policies, without really changing the direction of the country, and then have their fixes quickly undone when they lose power again.
Until the false consensus (which is designed to convince Canadians that their common-sense viewpoints are extreme and unacceptable) is challenged, Conservatives will always be on the defensive.
But if it is challenged – and challenged relentlessly and successfully – the political landscape of Canada could be transformed.
And that’s where Maxime Bernier comes in:
He’s obviously not a team player, but that’s the entire point. A team player would never have been willing to challenge the false-consensus that reigns in Ottawa, and a team player would always be screwed over by the political class the moment they got close to actually representing the views of a majority of Canadians.
But, if Bernier is successful in challenging and breaking down that consensus as an outsider, then millions of Canadians will realize that they are more conservative than they thought, and that Justin Trudeau and the media elites have been pulling the wool over their eyes.
Not only will that mean the Liberals could lose tons of votes, but the available electorate for the Conservatives could increase dramatically, and people will lose their fear of advocating true Conservatism. And, the Liberals will feel what it’s like to be constantly on the defensive.
If that ends up happening, the benefits to Conservatism will be massive, and the short-term pain will be seen as worth it.
Photo – YouTube