Pierre Poilievre is the man who could beat Trudeau

Batters highlighted Poilievre’s speech to convention, in which he concluded with the image of a young couple enjoying a home they could afford, one of them holding a hard-earned paycheck on a hot summer night. ‘summer.

“It evoked this imagery of something to aspire to, something to look back on nostalgically,” says Batters. “If he had said this part of his speech several years ago, someone would have thought, ‘Why are you talking about this?’ It’s not serious.'”

In 2015, the average price of a house in Canada was CA$413,000. The Canadian Real Estate Association reported a massive spike amid the pandemic, surpassing CA$800,000, before gradually dropping to CA$668,000 in July.

Poilievre’s housing solution: Fight cities that don’t build housing.

It promises to force municipalities to increase housing construction by 15 percent annually or face penalties, including withholding federal funding. It would also increase funding for cities that exceed their goals. Poilievre says his government would hear residents’ complaints about cities engaging in “blatant NIMBYism” that limits supply.

“Where complaints are substantiated, we will withhold infrastructure funds until municipalities clear the blockage and authorize housing construction,” he said.

Conservatives would provide federal funding to cities that “pre-authorize building permits for high-density housing and jobs on all available land around transit stations.” They promise to sell 15 percent of the more than 30,000 federal buildings owned by Ottawa.

He found particular influence in focusing on the public anxiety that grew as demand for housing outstripped supply and interest rates rose sharply, excluding potential buyers and putting at risk strain family budgets in a country where most mortgages have rates that adjust from time to time. years.

A summer makeover that has gained ground

For most of his 19 years as an elected politician, Poilievre was the picture of confrontation in the House of Commons – an attack dog whose penchant for aggressive remarks sometimes landed him in trouble hot.

In 2008, Poilievre apologized for questioning the work ethic of Indigenous people on a talk radio station in Ottawa. This summer, he apologized to a woman whose house he called a “little shack” as he denounced soaring property prices.

This reputation needed to be butchered.

The Conservatives launched a $3 million summer advertising campaign, a significant sum in Canadian politics, intended to soften his image as a family man.

He also stopped wearing glasses in public, saying his wife preferred the new look.

The ads, at least, seem to be paying off. Poilievre’s approval ratings are positive for the first time since he launched his party’s leadership race in 2022.

The Conservatives recently broke a year-long statistical tie with the Liberals, taking a double-digit lead in successive polls released by major polling companies.

Poilievre has battled negative personal preference ratings for more than a year, according to Abacus Data. By September, he had flipped the script. For the first time, more people surveyed about Abacus had a positive rather than negative impression.

Abacus CEO David Coletto told POLITICO the bad news for liberals has been brewing for about a year. “This is not a new phenomenon. It’s not a sudden change,” he says. “We saw these underlying leading indicators telling us that something was building against the government. »

In the most recent Abacus poll, only 27 percent of voters had a positive impression of the prime minister. More than four-fifths believe it is time for a change of government, although a third of them do not see a good alternative government.

The Conservatives hold a large lead – 41 percent of the vote, compared to 26 percent for the Liberals and 18 percent for the NDP.

Some convention delegates questioned the reliability of the summer polls, even though most Canadians don’t think about politics. Coletto insists Poilievre’s position is legitimate.

Peace in the ranks (especially)

This positive momentum has produced more unity among Conservatives than at any time since Stephen Harper, the party’s beloved founding leader, last forged a winning Conservative electoral coalition in 2011.

A large tent of conservatives gathered at the political convention in Quebec. Roman Baber, a former provincial politician who was kicked out of Premier Doug Ford’s caucus for opposing Covid lockdowns, roamed the halls. Many activists from Ford’s Progressive Conservative Party did the same, despite rumors of discord between the provincial and federal clans.


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