Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Support quality journalism
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
The Globe and Mail
Support quality journalism
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Globe and Mail website displayed on various devices
Just$1.99
per week
for the first 24 weeks

var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){console.log("scroll");var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1);

Prime Minister Harper and his wife Laureen wave as they leave a room following a speech to supporters, Sept. 15, 2014 in Ottawa.

Adrian Wyld/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Are we now in Day Two of a 399-day federal election campaign? Our hearts say, Please, no!, but our heads tell us, Yes, better suck it up. Barring prorogation or a vote of no confidence, Canada's fixed-date rules mean the next general election will be held Oct. 19, 2015, which in turn means that we can expect the writ to drop roughly 12 months from now. Except that the writ unofficially succumbed to gravity on Monday with the return of Parliament and a speech from Prime Minister Stephen Harper that has been described as "election-style." Let's be honest: Election-style is the only style right now.

NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair promised over the weekend to push for a $15 minimum wage for employees in federally regulated industries. It is just the first of a number of promises the NDP will roll out over the fall. The party also launched a slogan – "Change that's ready" – a shot at the Liberals' more tentative "Getting ready to lead," and a Liberal Leader they and the Conservatives hope to paint as unready to do so. "Prime Minister just isn't an entry-level job," the Opposition leader said.

Nor does it pay $15 an hour, come to think of it. Mr. Harper has been earning his generous Prime Minister's salary for close to nine years. His speech on Monday would have been at home echoing off the side of a campaign bus. He hammered away at Conservative themes of a strong economy, balanced budgets, lower taxes, safe streets, johns and pimps trembling in fear, and foreign policy that is unambiguously ideological. He set up his government's fall session, which in turn will set up its balanced budget next spring, which in turn will be the platform for Mr. Harper's re-election.

Story continues below advertisement

Which in turn brings up Justin Trudeau. He has been luxuriating in an extended honeymoon since becoming Liberal Leader in 2013. Poll-wise, he is the man to beat. But he has been reluctant to mess with a success that has come easily and without making any policy commitments. His opponents rightfully chide him for his vague promises about infrastructure and education spending, and for his Obama-like call for a new hope across the land that cashes in on dissatisfaction with Mr. Harper's aging government. When will Mr. Trudeau be ready to let us know what he would do as PM?

All three leaders plan to spend most of this parliamentary session on the road, wooing voters. In Mr. Harper's case, he will also be travelling abroad and reinforcing his brand as an international player. Voters will have plenty of time to judge their options. Two days down, 397 to go.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies