When Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called a snap election, he wanted to capture a majority in parliament, but a weak campaign and popular outrage about a vote during a pandemic are jeopardizing his chances of victory.
Trudeau, who has been in power since 2015, chose to risk an early election in order to capitalize on his government’s management of the pandemic, which included substantial spending to help individuals and companies, as well as high vaccination rates.
With only a week until the election on Sept. 20, Trudeau’s Liberals are still a long way from the 38 percent needed for a majority, and may even lose to the Conservatives, led by the relatively unknown Erin O’Toole.
Insiders blame a sluggish start to the campaign, as well as the unavoidable political baggage that Trudeau, 49, has accumulated since taking power six years ago promising “sunny ways.”
“I wish he hadn’t called it,” one Liberal source said of Trudeau’s plan to run for re-election two years before his mandate ends.