January 22, 2007


The surprising Stephen Harper: The Canadian Prime Minister has the power to allay fears of a 'hidden agenda.' (Rondi Adamson, 1/23/07, CS Monitor)

Even Harper's foes bow to his political savvy, focus, and intelligence. He has navigated the past year with only a minority government, meaning he needs opposition support to pass legislation. As a result, he has done little domestically that could reasonably be called radical. He has replaced left-leaning spending and social engineering with centrist spending and social engineering. For example, a national day-care plan proposed by his liberal predecessors was scrapped in favor of issuing monthly $100 checks to parents of children under the age of six. He has cut Canada's goods and services tax by 1 percent. And while he has made cuts to social programs, he has steered clear of touching the "third rails" of Canadian politics - socialized healthcare and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. [...]

This kind of principled stance and impressive leadership has earned him some respect, and cost him some support. It has also earned him the nickname, "Bush Lite." Many who know Harper call this unfair, saying these have always been his ideals, not something newly acquired to please Washington.

Whereas Chretien was Chirac-Lite.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 22, 2007 7:31 PM
Comments for this post are closed.