An emphasis on the middle class, environmental sustainability and strong federal/provincial cooperation will be the focus of coming policies, says John Brisbois.
The president of the Bay of Quinte Federal Liberal Association and some members were among more than 3,000 delegates in attendance at weekend’s Liberal Biennial Convention in Montreal.
Leader Justin Trudeau noted in his speech Saturday that Canadians don’t expect the government to perform miracles as they know it cannot resolve all issues. “What they do expect, however, and rightly so, is that the government help them have a real chance to succeed. The chance to get a quality education and a good job. The chance to be able to reimburse their debts and to be able to retire with dignity. We’ve had some great discussions so far this weekend.”
“The Biennial Convention creates policy for the 2015 election,” said Brisbois. “Local Liberals were in attendance for sessions that develop economic initiatives, election strategy and sustainable development to name a few.”
Brisbois said the tone was set in the opening address by Chrystia Freeland and Lawrence Summers – both noted authors in the field of economics with a theme that economic growth can be created to benefit everyone not just the 1 per cent.
Trudeau’s focus, he said, “starts with the core liberal ideas of freedom and opportunity. The idea that no matter where and to whom you were born, you start free, and should have a fair shot at success. Upward mobility should be a realistic prospect for everyone. If you remain hard-working and forward-thinking, you should be able to build a better life for yourself, and pass on even more opportunities to your kids.
“The growth we have seen over the past three decades has been the product of a broadly supported agenda. Investments in education, fiscal discipline, openness to trade. All of which the middle class voted for, repeatedly,” said Trudeau. “The original promise of that agenda was that everyone would share in the prosperity that it creates. That hasn’t happened. That’s not a political point. It’s a fact. If we don’t fix it, the middle class will stop supporting a growth agenda. That will make us all poorer.”
Policy resolutions adopted at the convention include A national framework for mental health, Aboriginal issues, Canadian Pension Plan enchancements, the National Action Plan on Dementia, Health Care, Fracking, and Death with Dignity: Legalizing Medically Assisted Death. Details here: http://convention.liberal.ca/2014-policy-resolutions/
He also appealed to past Conservative voters noting “People in Ottawa talk about the ‘Conservative base’ as if it is some angry mob to be feared. They’re wrong,” Trudeau told delegates. “As all of you know, the 5.8 million Canadians who voted Conservative aren’t your enemies. They’re your neighbours. These are good people. People who thought they were sending strong local leaders to be their voice in Ottawa, but got nothing in return but Mr. Harper’s voice in their communities.”
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