Yukon North Of Ordinary

News archive for April 15, 2013

Local Liberals enthusiastic about Trudeau’s big victory

Local Liberals are celebrating their new federal leader after Justin Trudeau’s landslide victory Sunday in the party’s leadership role Sunday.

By Stephanie Waddell on April 15, 2013 at 3:08 pm


Photo by Whitehorse Star

FUTURE LEADER IN THE NORTH – Liberal MP Justin Trudeau speaks at a news conference in Whitehorse in January 2011 as former Yukon MP Larry Bagnell looks on (top). ON THE TRAIL TO THE LEADERSHIP – Justin Trudeau enjoys some mushing along the trails behind Yukon College in January 2011.

Local Liberals are celebrating their new federal leader after Justin Trudeau’s landslide victory Sunday in the party’s leadership role Sunday.

The Papineau (Montreal) riding MP won the leadership on the first ballot with almost 80 per cent of the vote.

Yukon Liberals who could be reached for reaction this morning are saying they are also pleased with the new leader.

“He’s energized a lot of people,” said former Yukon senator Ione Christensen, adding it’s exactly what the party needs.

Her sentiments were echoed by a number of Liberal supporters in the territory. They pointed to his victory as a sign that the party is experiencing a resurgence in interest thanks to the leadership campaign.

Christensen wouldn’t speculate on how that will factor into the next federal or territorial elections, stating anything can happen.

Sandy Silver, the interim Liberal leader and sole Liberal MLA at the territorial level, said he’s confident the Yukon’s next MP will be under the Liberal banner.

He’s also expecting that energy will translate over to the territorial level.

“You couldn’t punch the smile off my face,” Silver said of Trudeau’s win, arguing it’s a great day for all Canadians who want to work toward creating a national identity.

While there were “great candidates right across the board” for the leadership, Silver’s support was behind Trudeau.

Silver argued Trudeau’s not beholden to any one area of Canada and will help bring the country together by working together.

Like Christensen, Silver said, Trudeau engaged youth throughout his campaign, making good use of social media in getting his message out.

“The momentum has switched,” he said of the Liberal party.

Former Liberal MP Larry Bagnell, meanwhile, noted Trudeau’s support for the North. He recalled the Liberal leader’s visit to the territory in 2011, even before the campaign began.

“He’s been very positive to the North in the past,” Bagnell said, pointing out Trudeau’s focus on the North’s people.

Throughout the campaign, Bagnell said he’s been surprised by the number of people who were previously not associated with any party putting their support behind Trudeau.

Pointing to the low voter turnout often seen during elections, Bagnell said the interest in the Liberal campaign and Trudeau could mean more voters at the polls, and that’s good news for everyone.

Next year, the federal Liberal party is set to have a major convention focused on policy, with Trudeau expressing an interest in having people from across the country involved, including in the North. Bagnell said he hopes to be involved with that as well.

As for whether Bagnell will run for the federal seat again under Trudeau’s leadership, he didn’t rule it out, stating it’s not a decision his family has made yet.

He was the MP from 2000 to 2011, losing that year to incumbent Conservative Ryan Leef.

Former commissioner Jack Cable said that while he had initially put his support behind Marc Garneau, once Garneau stepped out, he opted – as Garneau did – to support Trudeau, and believes the 41-year-old will help engage younger voters.

“I think Trudeau will bring a lot of people on board,” Cable said.

While his first choice of candidate isn’t the leader, he added, what he also wanted to see was a team that included both Trudeau and Garneau, and that will still happen.

Former territorial Liberal leader Arthur Mitchell also noted the interest Trudeau’s campaign has created.

Mitchell, who was speaking in his former role as a leader and not on behalf of the local Liberal party, said he was also pleased to see the strong group of high-calibre candidates seek the leadership.

Christensen also praised all those seeking the leadership.

While they all brought their own views and may have disagreed with one another, she said, they maintained respect for one another throughout the campaigns.

Candidate Deborah Coyne paid a visit to the Yukon during the campaign.

CommentsAdd a comment

June Jackson

Apr 15, 2013 at 6:17 pm

As much as I respect Larry Bagnell.. I don’t know if I can put a Trudeau on the throne.

His father aside.. not so long ago, Justin was on the floor of the house swearing like a seaman’s parrot.. he came off like a spoiled, foul mouthed little boy.  Are his fathers coattails enough to push him into the country’s leadership?  Has he grown up? Time will tell eh?


Apr 16, 2013 at 8:49 am

You wrote:

“He was the MP from 2000 to 2011, losing that year to incumbent Conservative Ryan Leef.”

How could he have lost his seat to an incumbent?

The incumbent, in politics, is the existing holder of a political office.

bobby bitman

Apr 16, 2013 at 3:31 pm

So far all The Harper Conservatives have been able to do is to slag Justin for participating in a charity fashion show fundraiser, and for paraphrasing why his father did not think Quebec needed special status, (because his father felt that Quebeckers already had more going for them than other Canadians.  Pierre’s view, and the Harper Cons bloody well knew it.)

I’d say things look extremely good for Justin Trudeau.

So far as the Yukon riding goes, so far Ryan has been nothing but a sock puppet for Steve Harper, and that ain’t winning him any fan base.  But, that is what the Harper Cons demand, and he wants to remain the Harper Con candidate.  Before the election I will personally make a list of Ryan’s voting on issues.  The long gun registry smack down was a plus, but other than that, it has been not good so far as I am aware.  (closing our tax office for starters)

bobby bitman

Apr 16, 2013 at 3:33 pm

PS - I suspect the next liberal candidate in this territory is going to be a very strong candidate.  Not Larry Long Gun Registry Bagnell.  I am not connected to the liberal party in any way, but have a feeling that one of our city councillors might just take a shot at it.  That is totally my guess but you heard it here first!

June Jackson

Apr 16, 2013 at 5:05 pm

I am really conflicted about this.. I agree 100% with Bobby Bitman’s opinion on Ryan Leefs performance on behalf of Yukoners..

But, the more I listen to Justin and the Trudeau legacy.. the more I think this might be the first time I didn’t vote in 50 years.

Add a comment

In order to encourage thoughtful and responsible discussion, comments will not be visible until a moderator approves them. Please add comments judiciously and refrain from maligning any individual or institution. Read about our user comment and privacy policies.

Your full name and email address are required before your comment will be posted.

Commenting is not available in this section entry.

Comment preview