Liberals herald new federal leader

Newly crowned federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau will bring youth, charisma and fairness to Canadian politics

  • Apr. 17, 2013 8:00 a.m.

By Laura Tester

Black Press

Newly crowned federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau will bring youth, charisma and fairness to Canadian politics, Liberal supporters in central Alberta said Monday.

William Weiswasser, president of Red Deer’s federal Liberal Electoral District Association, said he was pleased to see Trudeau win the leadership on Sunday night in Ottawa. It will be a positive step, not only for the party, but for everyone in federal politics, he said.

“I think he will provide a very spirited opposition to the phlegmatic (Stephen) Harper government, which exercises severe control over everything,” Weiswasser said.

He’s looking forward to Trudeau reinvigorating the party and is expecting the 41-year-old to bring exciting and beneficial ideas to Parliament in September.

“I think his win represents a lot of coalescing of a lot of support nationwide and I think his youthfulness appeals to the younger voter, who is in many cases apolitical and uninvolved,” Weiswasser said.

He liked both Trudeau and former MP Martha Hall Findlay during the federal leadership campaign. Both visited Red Deer while on the campaign trail across the country.

Trudeau achieved a landslide, first-ballot win, taking in more than 80 per cent of the available points in a final field of six candidates. MP Joyce Murray finished a very distance second with 10 per cent of the vote.

Trudeau was originally up against eight candidates, including MP and former astronaut Marc Garneau.

Red Deer historian Michael Dawe had supported Garneau, who ended up dropping out of the race on March 13 to support Trudeau.

Dawe said he believes that Trudeau’s last name could benefit or hinder him as he moves forward.

The son of the late former prime minister Pierre Trudeau should be judged on his own merits, Dawe said.

“He is extremely charismatic and he speaks really well.”

Dawe hopes that Justin Trudeau will bring in a new era of politics where leaders can work together on solving Canada’s issues.

He said Trudeau might already have some problems in trying to bring a positive atmosphere on the Hill.

The Conservative government unleashed attack TV ads Monday that suggested that Trudeau was too inexperienced to rule the country.